Land use/Land Cover Mapping Studies

Land use relates to the purpose of the land, such as recreation, wildlife habitat, or agriculture.


Objectives of the Land Use and Land cover are to establish the current land use pattern in the study area and at the project site. This will help to establish the anticipated environmental impacts due to change in land use pattern in the study area after implementation of the project. Existing land use and land cover data also will be useful in developing the sustainable land use plan in the area including green belt development, project related transport network, wet land system management, watershed management etc.

Land use/land cover plan will be developed as per the EIA Manual suggested by MoEF&CC and also good engineering practices suggested by NRSA and other agencies.

Parameters to be Considered (indicators)

The following parameters will be studied under this task.

Land Use / Land Cover – Land Use refers to human activities and the many uses carried out on land. Land cover includes natural flora, water bodies, rock/soil, artificial cover, and other features that come from land transformation. Land Use and Land Cover are closely related and interchangeable words. Knowledge of current land use and changing trends is critical if the country is to address the issues connected with haphazard and uncontrolled expansion.The purposes, for which land is being used commonly, are associated with different types of cover such as built-up land, agriculture, forest, wasteland, water body and others. The following land use/cover classes have been identified and presented in the land use/cover map.

Land use Classification –2nd Cycle – NNRMS Guidelines

Mapping methodologies to map Land Use / Land Cover categories by adopting classification Schema of NRC – LULC 2nd cycle

Natural Resources Census – LULC 50K Mapping (2nd Cycle) – Classification

Natural Resources Census - LULC 50K Mapping (2nd Cycle) – Classification
Natural Resources Census - LULC 50K Mapping (2nd Cycle) – Classification
Natural Resources Census - LULC 50K Mapping (2nd Cycle) – Classification

Methodology and Approach

The land use/land cover map is prepared by adopting the interpretation techniques of the image in conjunction with collateral data such as topographical maps and census records. Image classification may be accomplished via the use of visual interpretation techniques and digital classification through the use of any image processing software.For the present study, ERDAS and ArcGIS Software are used for preprocessing, rectification, enhancements and classifying the satellite data for preparation of land use land cover map and assessing land use land cover and land developmental activities.The image is initially interpreted using secondary data and image attributes.Thorough ground verification will be done to check each class of land use/land cover spread over the entire study area and final land use/land cover analysis will be made after necessary corrections. Flowchart showing the methodology adopted is presented below.

The data requirement for interpretation and analysis of land use and land cover of the study area is as below:

Basic Data: – Fused data of LISS-IV-MX or PAN+LISS3 merged, Survey of India Toposheets, Local knowledge, Area map on any scale to transfer details, Reports and other secondary data of the study area.
Ground Data: – Ground data is very much essential to verify and to increase the accuracy of the interpreted classes and to minimize the field work.

Data Analysis: The study may be separated into three phases for the analysis and interpretation of satellite data for land use and land cover mapping

Preliminary Work: – To lay down the criteria for land use classification to be adopted, To fix the size of mapping units, which depends upon the scale, Interpretation of different land use/cover classifications, Delineation of uncertain regions, preliminary land use/cover map creation

Field Work: -Specify the type of ground data to be collected. Selection of a sample area for final categorization, verification of dubious delineated regions, correction of incorrectly recognised land use/cover areas, and formulation of amended terminology Overall general verification.

Post-Field Work: – Re-interpretation or rectification of mismatch areas Transferring details out from the base map to the final land use/cover map

To finalize the land use/land cover map, the pre-field interpreted map details will be revised on to the base map by additional field information, wherever necessary. Final drawings will then be digitized in GIS software (ArcGIS) environment to prepare a digital database. Subsequently land use/land cover map of the study area will be digitally composed, and the final area statistics will be worked out in ArcGIS module.

SOI Topographical maps (1) (1)
Flow Chart showing Methodology of Land use Mapping

Site/Ground Truthing:

  • Site visit – capture the Geo-Coordinates of Boundary Pillars and record in field notebook.
  • Take traverses and study the land use categories, then plot them on a field map with field pictures on a draft map.
  • Observe each land use category like single crop/double crop, industrial area, settlements, forest lands, water bodies and waste lands.
  • The buffer zone region will  traverse  randomly for correlating mapping units.
  • Gathering secondary data from the agriculture department and local residents.

Presentation of the results

  • Land use maps at Level I and Level II as per MoEF&CC EIA Manual guidelines shall be developed
  • GIS Maps with different features of study area on different layers: Road, Rail, Airport/ Sea port, Canal, River, Water Bodies, Built-up area, Agricultural Land, Mangroves, Industries, Settlements, Forests marked on different layers with options for us to select the no. of layers for use
  • Land use data with areas for each land use class shall be provided
  • Ground truth verification shall be undertaken to reconfirm the forest land, plantation area and any other aspects that should be verified if necessary