Dynamic Land Use and Coastline Changes in active Estuarine Regions – A Study of Sundarban Delta
Alteration of natural environment in the wake of global warming is one of the most serious issues, which is being discussed across the world. Over the last 100 years, global sea level rose by 1.0–2.5 mm/y. Present estimates of future sea-level rise induced by climate change range from 28 to 98 cm for the year 2100. It has been estimated that a 1-m rise in sea-level could displace nearly 7 million people from their homes in India. The climate change and associated sea level rise is proclaimed to be a serious threat especially to the low lying coastal areas. Thus, study of long term effects on an estuarine region not only gives opportunity for identifying the vulnerable areas but also gives a clue to the periods where the sea level rise was significant and verifies climate change impact on sea level rise. Multi-temporal remote sensing data and GIS tools are often used to study the pattern of erosion/ accretion in an area and to predict the future coast lines. The present study has been carried out in the Indian Sundarbans area. Major land cover/ land use classes has been delineated and change analysis of the land cover/ land use feature was performed using multi-temporal satellite images (Landsat MSS, TM, ETM+) from 1973 to 2010. Multivariate GIS based analysis was carried out to depict vulnerability and its trend, spatially. Digital Shoreline change analysis also was attempted for two islands, namely, Ghoramara and Sagar Islands using the past 40 years of satellite data and validated with 2012 Resourcesat-2 LISS III data.