Detecting the Changes of AL-Hawizeh Marshland and Surrounding Areas Using GIS and Remote Sensing Techniques
The marshes of Iraq, which lie in southern part, play an important role in the economic and natural equilibrium. In the last decades, the Iraqi marshes suffered from several changes especially the land cover changes, which effect on environmental and ecosystem of marshes.
In this research, AL-Hawizeh marsh was selected as a study area due to being a one of the largest and most important Iraqi Marshlands to deduce the occurred changes in last decades. This study aims to detect the changes of land cover using vegetation index (NDVI), water index (NDWI), and sand dune index (NDSDI), these are implemented for a study area represented by AL-Hawizeh marsh and surrounding areas for the four years of the period of 1990-2015 depending on GIS technique and multi-temporal satellite data.
During the last decade remotely sensed data have been widely used to monitoring Marshland. Satellite remote sensed data can also provide information on surrounding land cover and their change over the time. Four Landsat images were used for 1990 (Landsat TM), 2000 (Landsat ETM+), and 2013 in addition to 2015 (Landsat LDCM).
The findings of this study showed significant change in land cover, for example, the surface area of vegetation decreased about 43% during this selected period.