A study of land cover change and its environmental index application

Prof. Lin, Chao-yuan

Taiwan was named as “Formosa” due to its plentiful forest resources back at the time. In addition, the mountainous landscape, high species diversity and the location of East Asian Monsoon along with high annual average rainfall of 2500mm per year together formed the unique Taiwan. Under the rapid population growth and limited land resources, many slopes have been developed continuously to farmland or residential area to satisfy the demands. Land use or/and land cover changes could lead to environmental issues such as flood, water pollution, and landslide. The consequent objectives of this three-year project are recognized, as shown in the following:

The first year project aims to analyze the change of land and water resources, thus examine the influential factors of major disasters in watersheds. The second year project aims to establish a management model on the hot spots of land use/land cover change in multi-scale perspectives, e.g. large scale (river basin), medium scale (management unit) and small scale (cadaster and pixel). The last year project aims to draft the strategic response to environmental change through three case studies that evaluate the potential area of deep-seated landslide in a watershed; identify the optimum groundwater recharge site screening for the significant subsidence watershed, and to discuss the spatial distribution change of carbon sequestration in a watershed.

In this study, the multi-aspect of environmental issues in a watershed such as a landslide, flood, wildfire, water resources conservation, grassland succession and wetland conservation will be analyzed by using environmental indices. According to the results, the driving forces and impacts from land use/cover change could be explored. Finally, an integrated stewardship model in the watershed for conservation and monitoring management’s will be established as a reference to authorities.