DESERTIFICATION ASSESSMENT USING MEDALUS MODEL IN UPPER LAMCHIENGKRAI WATERSHED, THAILAND
- 1Rambhaibarni Rajabhat University, Chanthaburi, Thailand
- 2Suranaree University of Technology, Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand
- 3Huathalae Subdistrict Municipality, Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand
- 4Institute of Spatial Technology, Tokyo, Japan
- 5Silpakorn University, Nakhon Pathom, Thailand
Keywords: Desertification, MEDALUS, Upper Lamchiengkrai Watershed
Abstract. Desertification is a global environmental problem. It affects harmful on economic, social and environmental that ultimately effects on quality of human life. Thailand is the 174th member of the UNCCD, according to the Thailand report of desertification by LDD (2004). It was found that the area of degraded land or desertification land in Thailand was 33.57 million hectares which were agricultural soil problem. Soil erosion and soil salinity are major problems for agricultural soil in Thailand. Thus, to prevent and fix such problems, assessment and evaluation of soil properties are essential. Lamchiengkrai watershed in Nakhon Ratchasima province presents soil salinity exposure area which is a major problem in the Northeast region of Thailand. This study aims to access a new approach for assessing the extent and the risk of desertification land by MEDALUS model based on geoinformatics technology in upper Lamchiengkrai watershed, Nakhon Ratchasima province. MEDALUS model is the factors of desertification assessment. Four groups of factors were examined, including vegetation (fire risk, erosion protection, and drought resistance), climatic (rainfall and rainfall erosivity), soil (soil texture, electrical conductivity, organic matter, soil depth, drainage, and slope), and human activity factor (land use and soil erosion). The results of the study indicated that 67.25% of the area was classified as high risk, 30.54% was classified as moderate risk and 2.22% was classified as low risk to desertification land. In addition, the factors affected on the high-risk area were climate and vegetation factors. Moderate risk area was influenced by the human activity factor and soil factors.