Concern for the availability of agricultural land has prompted many states, counties and local communities to initiate programs aimed at stopping the conversion of agricultural land to other uses. Sound land use planning efforts and management programs rely upon adequate information.
In responding to the needs of timely and detailed information on changes in Land use, the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Geological Survey have been engaged in monitoring and inventory of Land use for selected areas. In this paper, a methodological framework for monitoring changes in land use that is timely, relatively inexpensive, and appropriate for widely varying needs at state and regional levels is provided. Changes in land use pattern in one of the fastest growing areas in America have been measured through the use of remote sensing techniques and statistical theories. Policy implications of changes in terms of proper land use planning of the efficient uses of other natural resources are also presented.
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