Four Decade Land Degradation in Capital City of Islamabad Pakistan
during 2017-2019- A Comparative Assessment
The study of Land Use Land Cover (LULC) changes and their patterns
enhance our understanding of the causes and consequences of various
natural and man caused phenomenon. The Capital City of Pakistan,
Islamabad has expereinced high rate of urbnization and population
increase in the last 3-4 decades. The main aim of our study was to
provide compatible data on LULC change during the last 40 years for the
functional city Islamabad, Pakistan. LULC statistics were extracted from
Landsat Multi-spectral Scanner (MSS), Thematic Mapper (TM), Enhanced
Thematic Mapper Plus (ETM+) and Operational Land Imager (OLI) images.
For each of the target years (1979, 1989, 1999, 2009 and 2019) LULC
information was obtained through a supervised classification algorithm.
The study area was classified into five major landscape categories,
namely built-up, agriculture, forest, water bodies and barren land. The
results have indicated that the urban expansion has been increasing due
to mass migration and uncontrolled urbanization in the city. The urban
sprawl analysis revealed that built-up area and farmland has expanded by
41.7% and 5.20% during (1979-2019). On the other hand, the forest and
water bodies declined from at 9.03% and 1.21% respectively. The land
degradation has forced the planners to revise the original master plan
of the city and including the agricultural sector in the housing area
during 2019. This degradation of land has also led to increase in the
temperature of the city.