Preliminary land-use and land-cover mapping in the upper Okavango basin and implications for the Okavango delta
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Image processing in the upper Okavango catchment resulted in ten generalised classes which may be used as base line data for monitoring future overall land-use/cover change assessments over the entire upper catchment. Specific work was undertaken using single images for more detailed land-use/cover mapping in a 10 km buffer along all tributaries of the upper Okavango in Angola and Namibia. In terms of the under-developed Angolan upper catchment there is relatively little land clearing at present, and impacts on water use and quality are expected to be minimal in the near future. This is a consequence of 20 years of civil war, while the return of refugees is being inhibited by the prevalence of land-mines. Much more extensive development is taking place in Namibia along the southern bank of the Kavango river. This area is likely to become more intensively used as Namibia attempts to develop greater food security. Further work is required to monitor the impacts from Namibian agricultural expansion. These are likely to be pervasive in terms of the ecology of both the Mahango Game Reserve in Namibia and the Okavango Delta in Botswana.
- Research articles (ORI)