Document Type : Research Paper


Department of Environmental Planning and Management, Faculty of Environment, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran.



The response of water balance components as indicators of hydrological performance to stimuli such as land use change is of strategic importance. In this study, the effect of land use change on water balance components was evaluated, focusing on the relationships and change of the main indicators of water yield and sediment yield. Based on this, the Markov chain model was used to predict land use in 2040. Also, the American soil and water assessment tool was developed as a base model for evaluating and estimating hydrological indicators in the Taleghan Watershed as a mountainous watershed with structural heterogeneity. The results of model showed that the increase of settlements and urban development in Taleghan watershed will result in increased runoff, increased water yield and sediment yield indicators, and more sedimentation. Land use change leads to an increase of sediment yield by 11 times until 2040. The conversion of pastures to barren lands is the most important land use change that can increase sediment yield. Also, the increase of barren lands will be the reason for the reduction of evapotranspiration in some sub-basins of this watershed. Increasing rainfall and decreasing soil permeability will increase surface runoff, and as a result, soil erosion and sediment yield will increase. In this study, exactly the sub-basins that had the highest quantitative amount of predicted water yield index also had the highest quantitative amount of sediment yield index and increased sedimentation. In this research, it was determined that land use change as a type of structural change in the land will have visible effects on the functions and hydrological responses of the watershed.


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