Land Cover Change Assessment of Vaal Harts Irrigation Scheme using Multi-temporal Satellite Sata

Fredrick Ao Otieno 1 , Olumuyiwa I Ojo 2 ,  and George M. Ochieng 3
  • 1 Durban University of Technology, Durban, South Africa
  • 2 Dept. of Civil Engineering
  • 3 Tshwane University of Technology, Pretoria, South Africa


Land cover change (LCC) is important to assess the land use/land cover changes with respect to the development activities like irrigation. The region selected for the study is Vaal Harts Irrigation Scheme (VHS) occupying an area of approximately 36, 325 hectares of irrigated land. The study was carried out using Land sat data of 1991, 2001, 2005 covering the area to assess the changes in land use/land cover for which supervised classification technique has been applied. The Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) index was also done to assess vegetative change conditions during the period of investigation. By using the remote sensing images and with the support of GIS the spatial pattern of land use change of Vaal Harts Irrigation Scheme for 15 years was extracted and interpreted for the changes of scheme. Results showed that the spatial difference of land use change was obvious. The analysis reveals that 37.86% of additional land area has been brought under fallow land and thus less irrigation area (18.21%). There is an urgent need for management program to control the loss of irrigation land and therefore reclaim the damaged land in order to make the scheme more viable.

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