Development of 2010 national land cover database for the Nepal

Type Journal Article - Journal of environmental management
Title Development of 2010 national land cover database for the Nepal
Volume 148
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2015
Page numbers 82-90
Land cover and its change analysis across the Hindu Kush Himalayan (HKH) region is realized as an
urgent need to support diverse issues of environmental conservation. This study presents the first and
most complete national land cover database of Nepal prepared using public domain Landsat TM data of
2010 and replicable methodology. The study estimated that 39.1% of Nepal is covered by forests and
29.83% by agriculture. Patch and edge forests constituting 23.4% of national forest cover revealed
proximate biotic interferences over the forests. Core forests constituted 79.3% of forests of Protected
areas where as 63% of area was under core forests in the outside protected area. Physiographic regions
wise forest fragmentation analysis revealed specific conservation requirements for productive hill and
mid mountain regions. Comparative analysis with Landsat TM based global land cover product showed
difference of the order of 30e60% among different land cover classes stressing the need for significant
improvements for national level adoption. The online web based land cover validation tool is developed
for continual improvement of land cover product. The potential use of the data set for national and
regional level sustainable land use planning strategies and meeting several global commitments also

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