Original scientific paper
Published in: Holistic Approach Environ. 4(2014) 1, pp. 29 – 38
Paper reference number: HAE-78
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Shirkou Jaafari*, Afshin Alizadeh Shabani*, Afshin Danehkar*, Aliakbar Nazarisamani*

* Faculty of Natural Resources, University of Tehran, Karaj, Iran



Globally, land use change impacts biodiversity, water and radiation budgets, emission of greenhouse gases, carbon cycling, and livelihoods. The study of LUCC and its dynamics is crucial for environmental management, especially with regard to sustainable agriculture and forestry. Different models, in terms of structure and application, have been used to understand LUCC dynamics. The present study aims to simulate the spatial pattern of land use change in Varjin protected area, Iran. Land cover maps for 2000 and 2010 were prepared using TM images. Images were classified using supervised classification. CA Markov model was used to predict land cover map for 2020 as a top- down approach in investigating land use change. A comparison was made between the predicted and older land use map. The findings of the study suggest that the region will experience a degradation in poor range and increase rate in urban from 2010 to 2020. Moreover, if the trend of land exploitation and current management policy of the region continue as before, the region will experience with urban development and degradation in the Varjin protected area.

Keywords: land use and land cover changes, land use and land cover modelling, cellular automata, ecological modelling