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Journal: International Journal of Engineering Sciences & Research Technology (IJESRT) (Vol.5, No. 10)

Publication Date:

Authors : ; ;

Page : 537-546

Keywords : GIS; Land Use; Livelihods and Agricultural Production .;

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Miiriga Mieru East Sub County is situated in Meru County. This sub county is in the proximity of the Meru Municipality and has been experiencing a high rate of land use / cover changes which has affected agricultural production significantly. The agricultural land has been subdivided due to high population increase and urbanization. This has led to decrease of agricultural land and impacted on agricultural production and biodiversity. The reduction of agricultural land has led to the rural livelihoods to experiencing fo od shortages. This paper has sought to explore land use changes, agricultural production trends as the main drivers behind deteriorating agricultural land, relationship between population, land use changes and implications on agricultural production. The l and use changes classification of Landsat TM image and change analysis done, population data was processed and analysed and correlated to food production. Miiriga Mieru Sub County has experienced significant land use changes over the period of study. The f orest cover decreased from 48.18% in 1988 to 23.04% in 2014. This trend shows decrease in the forest cover. The built up area increased from 0.51% in 1988 to 3.34% in 2014. The increase of built up area is attributed to the need for settlement as populatio n increases. The area under agriculture increased from 51.31% in 1988 to 73.62% in 2014. Agricultural lands and urban areas have being increasing while as forest areas experience a decrease as population continues to steadily. The main driver to deteriorat ing croplands especially after 2000 was due to increasing built up areas that have come as a result of increased land sub ‐ divisions and population pressures. The built up area increased from 1.46% in 2000 to 3.34% in 2014. The cropland areas decreased in from 77.40% in 2000 to 73.62% in 2014. Impact of population growth on land use changes is depicted by the continued increas e of human population as shown by the population census of 1989 to 2009, continued decrease in forest areas and increase in urban areas.

Last modified: 2016-10-15 21:38:34