Volume No. 9 Issue No.: 1 Page No.: 249-254 July-September 2014

 

ASSESSMENT OF IMPACT OF OPENCAST MINE ON SURROUNDING FOREST : A CASE STUDY FROM KEONJHAR DISTRICT OF ODISHA, INDIA

 

Patra Himansu Sekhar* and Sethy Kabir Mohan

Department of Geography, Utkal University, Bhubaneswar, Odisha (INDIA)

 

Received on : January 10, 2014

 

ABSTRACT

 

Mining as an industrial activity, disturb the surrounding natural environment. Surface mining in particular involves the clearing of large tracts of forest and agricultural land, resulting in serious land and forest degradation. Forests are the greatest victims of developmental activities like mining, which can be gauged from the depletion of the forests in various mine belts. Large scale of unplanned and unscientific open cast mining in various mineral belt of Odisha has been observed during last decade having serious implications on the surrounding forest. Remote sensing technology can be effectively used as a valuable asset in assessing the impact of mining activity on the surrounding forest. The present study was undertaken to analyze the impact of iron mine on the surrounding forest in Keonjhar district of Odisha, India by interpreting temporal remote sensing data and using Geographic Information System (GIS). The results find out significant reduction in dense forest area along with increase in open and degraded category forest during the study period. This study concludes that degradation of forest is one of the major externalities of open cast mining which is yet to be addressed properly and their needs a through attention to this issue in upcoming days. The study also highlights the utility of this technology in monitoring the impact of large-scale mining and other extensive forms of resource exploitation such as deforestation in developing countries.

 

Keywords : Iron mining, Remote sensing, GIS, Degradation, LULC, Deforestation

 

 

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