Forest cover change and forest degradation is a serious global problem that affects the socio-economic and ecological function of forest landscapes in the Globe. Lume district in Ethiopia is one of the forested areas that has an important socio-economic and ecological function. Currently, despite their contribution to both the economic and ecological service forests of Lume district are under serious streak both from anthropogenic and natural calamities.

Hence, the fundamental aim of this study is to investigate the magnitude and rate of forest cover change, identifying the respective driving forces for the last 33 years (1985-2018). Quantitative data was collected using Landsat5 TM and Landsat8 OLI_TIRS satellite image; these data were used to define the spatial and temporal change-using Quantum GIS (QGIS). Qualitative data were collected using key informant interviews, household surveys, and focus group discussion for determining the driving forces of the change. SCP, QGIS 2.18.2, MOLUSCE, EXCEL, and R software were used for processing and analyzing data obtained from RS and social surveys respectively. The finding of the study revealed that during 33 years period agriculture land and urban buildings/settlements increased by 7828ha (10.82%) and 15471.92ha (21.39%) respectively with an equivalent area of 3887.85ha (5.37%) and 17502.55ha (24.2%) decline in forests and shrubland. Throughout the study periods, a steady net increasing rate of expansions observed for urban buildings/settlements and agriculture land by 468.8ha and 237.27ha per annual. On contrary, a net decline rate noted for shrublands and forests by 530.38ha and 117.8ha per year. The main findings of this study disclosed that, a resume increase in agriculture land and urban buildings and settlements at the expense of forests and shrublands throughout investigated periods (1985-2018). The major proximate and underlying drivers of forest cover change identified through HHS and FGDS are agricultural land expansion, fuelwood extraction, charcoal production, urban expansion, expansion of rural settlements, extended dry period, infrastructural development, high rate of population growth, landlessness, low institutional enforcement, and others. Hence, in order to revoke the problem of forest cover change and its impact, proper measures had been forwarded which can be implemented both in the long and short-term commitment of concerned stakeholders in the district and national level.

Keywords: Accuracy, Land use/Land cover change, Magnitude, Rate, Trends.



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National Measuring, Reporting and Verification Capacity Building Towards Climate Resilient Development in Ethiopia.

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