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Soil Loss Minimization through Land Use Optimization

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  21st Century Watershed Technology: Improving Water Quality and the Environment Conference Proceedings, May 27-June 1, 2012, Bari, Italy  12-13728.(doi:10.13031/2013.41436)
Authors:   Davood - Nikkami, Hadi - Chamheidar, Mohammad Hossein - Mahdian, Ebrahim - Pazira
Keywords:   Abolabbas, Land resources, Land use, Linear programming

The optimal allocation of the limited land resources in a watershed scale is one of the most important factors of reducing the volume of soil erosion. Applying optimization techniques can empower the decision-maker or watershed manager to maintain a reasonable balance between environmental flows and demands. The main objective of this research is to study the optimized combination of land allocation to different land uses like forestland, rangeland, orchard, irrigated farming and dry farming for minimized soil erosion in Abolabbas watershed located in Khuzestan province, Iran. For this purpose an optimization problem based on linear programming solution has been formulated in three different land use scenarios including existing land uses, existing land uses and some land management and finally optimum land uses with proper land management. Using simplex method within the LINGO software, the optimal solution was determined. The results demonstrated that the amount of soil erosion could, respectively reduce to the tune of 1.70, 69.77 and 75.85%, in three scenarios, in case of implementing optimal allocation of land resources in different land uses. The results of sensitivity analysis also showed that the area of orchard and irrigated lands are the most sensitive parameters in the constraints of soil erosion minimization problem.

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