Assessment of remote sensing and GIS application in identification of land suitability for agroforestry: A case study of Samastipur, Bihar, India

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Agroforestry provides the foundation for climate-smart agriculture to withstand the extreme weather events. The aim of the present study was to identify the land of Samastipur, Bihar, India for agroforestry, based on GIS modeling concept utilizing various ancillary (soil fertility) and satellite data (DEM, wetness, NDVI and LULC) sets. This was achieved by integrating various thematic layers logically in GIS domain. Agroforestry suitability maps were generated for the Samastipur district of Bihar, India which showed 48.22 % as very high suitable, 22.83 % as high suitable, 23.32% as moderate suitable and 5.63% as low suitable. The cross evaluation of agroforestry suitability with LULC categories revealed that the 86.4 % (agriculture) and 30.2% (open area) of land fall into a very high agroforestry suitability category which provides the huge opportunity to harness agroforestry practices if utilized scientifically. Such analysis/results will certainly assist agroforestry policymakers and planner in the state of Bihar, India to implement and extend it to new areas. The potentiality of Remote Sensing and GIS can be exploited in accessing suitable land for agroforestry which will significantly help to rural poor people/farmers in ensuring food and ecological security, resilience in livelihoods.

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