Developing the prototype AndaLAND for agriculture soil and water assessment in climate change scenarios

Marta Fernández-Boyano, David Tabernero-Pérez, Sergio Alonso-Herrero, José Miguel Pérez-Álvarez, Francisco José Blanco-Velázquez, María Anaya-Romero, José Enrique Fernández-Luque


There is a critical need to incorporate concerns on soil and water use and protection into land use planning policies and practices, not exclusively in protected areas, especially taking into account the widespread power transfer to local authorities regarding land-use decision making. Accordingly, it is extremely useful what Decision Support Systems (DSS) do on land use. AndaLAND is a prototype DSS which has been developed as a web-based application. It helps to define the vulnerability and the efficiency of the use and protection of soils in the selected target region: Andalusia (Southern Spain). AndaLAND integrates a complete catalogue of information on climate, soil and soil management, to make land vulnerability evaluation. By using Web Map Services (WMS), AndaLAND is fed with available databases from public mapping services (the Geographic Information System for the Common Agricultural Policy-SIGPAC) and other external sources (Microcomputed-based Land Evaluation Information System, MicroLEIS). Climate change scenarios are considered jointly with other relevant global change elements, such as land use change. Soil evaluation is based on decision rules that follow a decision tree. This method was established from Drools (a powerful hybrid reasoning system), using agrological rules for determining soil capacity in plots. The tool is capable of evaluating individually more than 6 million plots currently existing in the Andalusian region. AndaLAND’s final output is a report on the particular vulnerability of a user-specified plot. The report includes information on the plot’s geographical location, its environmental status regarding to (current and potential) impacts, degradation and/or pollution in the water-soil-crop system and eventual affections due to climate change-induced events. The report also provides practical recommendations for sustainable use and management of plots (in particular, for irrigated crops, these recommendations are linked to available irrigation technologies and water consumption).
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