Document Type : Research Paper


1 gorgan u

2 Gorgan University of Agricultural Sciencesand Natural Resources

3 university if malayer


Indiscriminate land utilization methods, forest and rangeland degradation, land abandonment and development of residential areas contribute to the changes in flow intensity, erosion rate and sedimentation. Therefore, having knowledge on the effect of land use changes on discharge flow and sediment yield has been found necessary. The present research aims at investigating the effects of these factors by means of the semi-distributed Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) in Galikesh watershed, Golestan province (as a tributary of the River Gorganroud), in an area covering approximately 39000 hectares. This model was used in a 27-year period for simulation, calibration, validation and optimization of the parameters affecting flow and sediment yield. Land-use maps were prepared form the Landsat imageries dated 1987, 2000 and 2013. The SUFI2 model was used for model calibration and validation. Nash-Sutcliffe (NS) index was used as the objective function during model calibration (1990-2007) for the simulation of discharge and suspended load, which resulted in 0.63 and 0.61 that could be interpreted as satisfactory compared to the standards set in previous research. To evaluate the effect of land use changes on runoff and sediment yield, all model inputs, other than land use, were assumed constant. The results demonstrated that land use changes since 1987 to 2013 have led to an increase in annual runoff height by 1.40 mm and annual sediment concentration by 2 t.ha-1.


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