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Assessing the effectiveness of land restoration interventions in dry lands by multitemporal remote sensing - a case study in ouled dlim (Marrakech, Morocco)

Zucca, Claudio and Wu, Weicheng and Dessena, Leonarda and Mulas, Maurizio (2015) Assessing the effectiveness of land restoration interventions in dry lands by multitemporal remote sensing - a case study in ouled dlim (Marrakech, Morocco). Land Degradation & Development, Vol. 26 (1), p. 80-91. eISSN 1099-145X. Article.

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DOI: 10.1002/ldr.2307

Abstract

Atriplex nummularia has been extensively planted in Northern Africa to combat desertification. However, few studies evaluated the effectiveness of these interventions. This study aimed at assessing the dynamic performance of a number of Atriplex plantations located in the Marrakech province in terms of multitemporal dry biomass production. Three SPOT 5 images (2004, 2008 and 2012) and field biomass measurements were integrated to quantify the dry biomass production dynamics of plantations established from 1996 to 2007. Different plant ages covered the whole plant life cycle curve. Vegetation indices were derived from the images and those of 2012 were coupled to the measured biomass of 2012 to formulate biomass models. An analysis of shrub biomass production was conducted in plantations and in adjacent rangelands, covering varying degree of plant development, and an estimate of the economic benefits generated by the plantations in terms of available fodder biomass was performed. The results show that, on average, the plantation sites produced 2•21 to 3•61 Mg ha−1 of dry biomass more than the surrounding rangelands. The best performing plantations yielded even greater differences, up to more than 7 Mg ha−1. It was observed that the most performing plantations, while contributing to mitigating land degradation, have generated economic value and could compensate the economic cost of the intervention even under drought conditions. However, in several cases the plantation performance was far from sustainability, particularly due to poor management (early and/or over grazing), revealing that management is a critical factor for the success of this restoration practice.

Item Type:Article
ID Code:10025
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords:Desertification, Atriplex, biomass, vegetation indices, rangeland, rehabilitation, assessment, monitoring
Subjects:Area 07 - Scienze agrarie e veterinarie > AGR/14 Pedologia
Area 07 - Scienze agrarie e veterinarie > AGR/03 Arboricoltura generale e coltivazioni arboree
Divisions:001 Università di Sassari > 02 Centri > Centro interdipartimentale Nucleo di ricerca sulla desertificazione
001 Università di Sassari > 01-a Nuovi Dipartimenti dal 2012 > Agraria
001 Università di Sassari > 01-a Nuovi Dipartimenti dal 2012 > Scienze della Natura e del Territorio
Publisher:Wiley
eISSN:1099-145X
Deposited On:08 Sep 2014 12:46

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