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Tropentag, September 14 - 16, 2022, Prague

"Can agroecological farming feed the world? Farmers' and academia's views."


Patterns and drivers of medium-term agricultural landscape transformation in Kyunsu township, Southern Myanmar

Phyu Thaw Tun, Thanh Thi Nguyen, Andreas Buerkert

University of Kassel, Organic Plant Production and Agroecosyst. Res. in the Tropics and Subtropics, Germany


Abstract


Kyunsu Township in Southern Myanmar comprises coastal regions and a multitude of small islands covered by vast tropical evergreen forests, mangrove forests, and a large water body in the Adman Sea. Due to population growth, residents are increasingly expanding their agricultural areas. Understanding the patterns and drivers of medium-term agricultural landscape transformation in this area is crucial for local policy making to foster sustainable crop production.
Landsat datasets were used in a comparative post-classification approach to investigate agricultural landscape transformation over 40 years. Iso-cluster unsupervised classification, supervised random forest classification, compilation of classified data, and digitisation of Landsat datasets from 1978, 1989, 2000, 2011, and 2020 were performed using ArcGIS software and GEE platform. A minimum of 58 training points and 65 training polygons for each class were used for supervised classification.
The overall accuracies of the classification were 96% (1978), 97% (1989), 97% (2000), 97% (2011), and 97% (2020). As expected, the results did not indicate changes in water bodies within the last 40 years. However, major changes were noted in lowland rice fields (+90%), open forests (+81%), settlement areas (+115%), aquaculture (+1594%), and other land uses (+188%) while closed forests shrunk by -45%. Also, minor changes occurred in mangrove forests (-9%) and in plantation areas (+11%). Change detection showed that 10 km2 of lowland rice areas expanded to open forests and plantation areas and a large proportion of closed forests (405.23 km2) transformed to open forests. Our findings may support local land-use planner and extension services to foster agroecological farming practices to secure the livelihoods of the local people while maintaining ecosystem services.


Keywords: Agricultural landscape transformation, ecosystem protection, Kyunsu, sustainable crop production


Contact Address: Phyu Thaw Tun, University of Kassel, Organic Plant Production and Agroecosyst. Res. in the Tropics and Subtropics, Steinstrasse 19, 37213 Witzenhausen, Germany, e-mail: phyuthaw25@gmail.com


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