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Land Use Analysis

  • By: Robert Gilmore Pontius Jr.
  • In: Encyclopedia of Geography
  • Edited by: Barney Warf
  • Subject:General Geography, Earth & Environmental Science

Land use analysis is the quantitative and qualitative assessment of how humans use land. It addresses three types of questions concerning the what, why, and how of land use.

What is Land Use?

The first step in land use analysis is to map the land covers and land uses of a study area. There is an important distinction between land cover and land use.

Land cover is the physical cover of the land. For example, two common types of land cover are built and forest. Land cover can be observed and documented via remote sensing using sensors that are mounted on satellites, airplanes, or ground-based platforms. Cartographic methods are necessary to convert the information from the sensors into maps of land cover categories. Maps of land cover indicate ...

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