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Evaluation of desertification hazard in the Jaz_Murian aquifer based on analysis of climate and groundwater criteria

By: Mojtaba Soleimani Sardo, Abolfazl Ranjbar Fordoei, Seyed Hojjat Mousavi

Key Words: Desertification hazard, IMDPA Method, Groundwater Depletion, Geo-statistical analysis

J. Bio. Env. Sci. 9(1), 337-347, July 2016.

Abstract

Desertification is a major concern of this century and occurs as a result of climatic and human induced factors. The current work aims to depict the desertification hazard map in the Jaz_Murian region using an Iranian Model of Desertification Potential Assessment (IMDPA) based on groundwater and climate criteria. For the evaluation of groundwater criterion, four indices included Electrical Conductive (Ec), Sodium Absorption Ratio (SAR), Chloride (CL), and groundwater depletion are usually used. As well as, two climatic (precipitation and aridity) indices were considered. As the groundwater quality data are collected in a much-dispersed network of wells, this problem is moderated by various geostatistical methods that have been developed to predict values at the unmeasured locations. This paper used Kriging’s method to interpolate groundwater quality variables. In order to better understanding the groundwater level of Jaz_Murian aquifer, the groundwater hydrograph was generated. The results showed that the groundwater level depleted about 6.8 meter during the last 11 years. Moreover, evaluation of desertification based on climatic indices showed that the Jaz_Murian aquifer faces a critical desertification hazard. Results have shown that about 49% of the area fell into the moderate category and the rest (51%) fell into the high category for desertification hazard. Decrease in precipitation and severe utilization of groundwater particularly in the agricultural sector led to desertification that calls for urgent establishment of watershed management projects in this region.

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