Assessing the land degradation using water use efficiency (WUE) and drought indices (case study: Fars province)

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Department of Agricultural and Natural Resources, University of Hormozgan, Iran

2 Department of Natural Resources Engineering, University of Hormozgan, Bandar-Abbas, Hormozgan, Iran.

3 Department of Natural Resources Engineering, Agricultural and Natural Resources college, University of Hormozgan, Iran

4 Associate Professor, Department of geography, University of Hormozgan, Iran

5 Associate Professor, Department of Geosciences, The University of Tulsa, Tulsa-Oklahoma


In this study, water use efficiency index (WUE) was used to assessing the effect of drought on the carbon and water cycle. To calculate this index, we used the gross primary product (GPP) and evapotranspiration (ET) products obtained from the MODIS sensor, and the trend of their changes and reaction of this index to drought were calculated for the period 2017-2001 in Fars province. Finally, we assessed the land degradation and desertification in different land uses for study area. The results showed that the indices of evapotranspiration, GPP, water use efficiency, and drought increased by 75.25%, 29.9%, 78.51%, and 67.23%, respectively. The effects of drought on evapotranspiration in agricultural lands and grasslands showed more than 67% positive relationship and also, in these land uses, we observed a significant positive relationship (33.4% and 12.5% for the agricultural lands and grassland, respectively). However, in shrubs lands, and savannas, it is more than 66.6% and 87.5%. The effect of drought on water use efficiency in grassland showed that more than 87% of these areas have a positive relationship. The effectiveness of water use efficiency in plants shows a positive relationship in 40.9% in this area, of which only 0.9% has a significant positive relationship. The negative relationship of this land use is about 59.1% of it. Of this negative amount, only 1.6% of the area had a significant negative relationship. The study of this relationship in the use of savannas shows 75% of this area, which includes 1.5 square kilometers.


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Volume 74, Issue 1
June 2021
Pages 103-120
  • Receive Date: 26 November 2020
  • Revise Date: 04 January 2021
  • Accept Date: 07 January 2021
  • First Publish Date: 22 May 2021