What is it about?
In the last few years, the agricultural sector in Syria has suffered from major problems related to land degradation. To cope with this problem, a land suitability assessment has become an essential tool for sustainable land use management. The present research qualitatively evaluated the suitability of land in the Al-Yarmouk Basin (S-Syria) for rainfed winter wheat (Triticum aestivum) cultivation. In this study, a regional spatial approach involving three steps was developed, based on the method proposed by Sys et al. In the first step, a soil survey was carried out and 107 soil profiles were described, sampled and analyzed. In the second step, climatic gridded datasets from 1984–2014 MRm at a high spatial resolution (30 meters) and the Digital Elevation Model (DEM) were clipped from NASA’s Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) and prepared for the study area. In the third step, a land suitability assessment was performed using the geographical information system (GIS) and multi criteria decision support (MCDS).
Photo by Raphael Rychetsky on Unsplash
Why is it important?
Soil survey outcomes showed that the study area was dominated by five soil orders: Mollisols, Inceptisols, Vertisols, Entisols and Aridisols. Also, results from the Sys model illustrated that more than 23.8% of the study area is highly suitable (S1–0) for wheat production without any limitations, whereas 38.7% and 37.5% are highly suitable (S1–1) and moderately suitable (S2), respectively. Also, the study emphasizes the important role of topographical factors in the study areafor wheat cultivation. All in all, this research suggests W-Syria as a potential region for wheat cultivation, instead of the eastern area which is subject to climate change and a shortage of water. Integrating the Sys-approach and the GIS framework offers a good tool for policy-makers to apply in Syria for land suitability assessments.
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This page is a summary of: Assessment of land suitability potentials for winter wheat cultivation by using a multi criteria decision Support- Geographic information system (MCDS-GIS) approach in Al-Yarmouk Basin (S syria), Geocarto International, July 2020, Taylor & Francis, DOI: 10.1080/10106049.2020.1790674.
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