GIS/RS-based Rapid Reassessment for Slope Land Capability Classification

Friday, 19 December 2014
Ting-Yu Chang and Chuphan Chompuchan, NCHU National Chung Hsing University, Taichung, Taiwan
Farmland resources in Taiwan are limited because about 73% is mountainous and slope land. Moreover, the rapid urbanization and dense population resulted in the highly developed flat area. Therefore, the utilization of slope land for agriculture is more needed. In 1976, “Slope Land Conservation and Utilization Act” was promulgated to regulate the slope land utilization. Consequently, slope land capability was categorized into Class I-IV according to 4 criteria, i.e., average land slope, effective soil depth, degree of soil erosion, and parent rock. The slope land capability Class I-VI are suitable for cultivation and pasture. Whereas, Class V should be used for forestry purpose and Class VI should be the conservation land which requires intensive conservation practices. The field survey was conducted to categorize each land unit as the classification scheme. The landowners may not allow to overuse land capability limitation.

In the last decade, typhoons and landslides frequently devastated in Taiwan. The rapid post-disaster reassessment of the slope land capability classification is necessary. However, the large-scale disaster on slope land is the constraint of field investigation. This study focused on using satellite remote sensing and GIS as the rapid re-evaluation method. Chenyulan watershed in Nantou County, Taiwan was selected to be a case study area. Grid-based slope derivation, topographic wetness index (TWI) and USLE soil loss calculation were used to classify slope land capability. The results showed that GIS-based classification give an overall accuracy of 68.32%. In addition, the post-disaster areas of Typhoon Morakot in 2009, which interpreted by SPOT satellite imageries, were suggested to classify as the conservation lands. These tools perform better in the large coverage post-disaster update for slope land capability classification and reduce time-consuming, manpower and material resources to the field investigation.