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Geographic information science: Contribution to understanding salt and sodium affected soils in the Senegal River ValleyRamatoulaye Ndiaye
Kansas State University
The Senegal River valley and delta (SRVD) are affected by long term climate variability. Indicators of these climatic shifts include a rainfall deficit, warmer temperatures, sea level rise, floods, and drought. These shifts have led to environmental degradation, water deficits, and profound effects on human life and activities in the area. Geographic Information Science (GIScience), including satellite-based remote sensing methods offer several advantages over conventional ground-based methods used to map and monitor salt-affected soil (SAS) features. This study was designed to assess the accuracy of information on soil salinization extracted from Landsat satellite imagery. Would available imagery and GIScience data analysis enable an ability to discriminate natural soil salinization from soil sodication and provide an ability to characterize the SAS trend and pattern over 30 years? A set of Landsat MSS (June 1973 and September 1979), Landsat TM (November 1987, April 1994 and November 1999) and ETM+ (May 2001 and March 2003) images have been used to map and monitor salt impacted soil distribution. Supervised classification, unsupervised classification and post-classification change detection methods were used. Supervised classifications of May 2001 and March 2003 images were made in conjunction field data characterizing soil surface chemical characteristics that included exchange sodium percentage (ESP), cation exchange capacity (CEC) and the electrical conductivity (EC). With this supervised information extraction method, the distribution of three different types of SAS (saline, saline-sodic, and sodic) was mapped with an accuracy of 91.07% for 2001 image and 73.21% for 2003 image. Change detection results confirmed a decreasing trend in non-saline and saline soil and an increase in saline-sodic and sodic soil. All seven Landsat images were subjected to the unsupervised classification method which resulted in maps that separate SAS according to their degree of salinity. The spatial distribution of sodic and saline-sodic soils has a strong relationship with the area of irrigated rice crop management. This study documented that human-induced salinization is progressively replacing natural salinization in the SRVD. These pedologic parameters obtained using GIScience remote sensing techniques can be used as a scientific tool for sustainable management and to assist with the implementation of environmental policy.
Earth sciences; Biological sciences; Landsat images; Salt-affected soils; Senegal River Valley; Supervised classification; Unsupervised classification; Physical geography; Soil sciences; Remote sensing; 0799:Remote sensing; 0481:Soil sciences; 0368:Physical geography
J. Harrington, Jr.
Kansas State University
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