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Solid Earth An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 8, issue 3
Solid Earth, 8, 683–695, 2017
https://doi.org/10.5194/se-8-683-2017
© Author(s) 2017. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Solid Earth, 8, 683–695, 2017
https://doi.org/10.5194/se-8-683-2017
© Author(s) 2017. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Research article 20 Jun 2017

Research article | 20 Jun 2017

Assessing and analysing the impact of land take pressures on arable land

Ece Aksoy1, Mirko Gregor2, Christoph Schröder1, Manuel Löhnertz2, and Geertrui Louwagie3 Ece Aksoy et al.
  • 1European Topic Centre on Urban, Land and Soil systems (ETC/ULS), University of Malaga, Malaga, Spain
  • 2ETC/ULS, space4environment, Niederanven, Luxembourg
  • 3European Environment Agency (EEA), Copenhagen, Denmark

Abstract. Land, and in particular soil, is a finite and essentially non-renewable resource. Across the European Union, land take, i.e. the increase of settlement area over time, annually consumes more than 1000 km2 of which half is actually sealed and hence lost under impermeable surfaces. Land take, and in particular soil sealing, has already been identified as one of the major soil threats in the 2006 European Commission Communication Towards a Thematic Strategy on Soil Protection and the Soil Thematic Strategy and has been confirmed as such in the report on the implementation of this strategy. The aim of this study is to relate the potential of land for a particular use in a given region with the actual land use. This allows evaluating whether land (especially the soil dimension) is used according to its (theoretical) potential. To this aim, the impact of several land cover flows related to urban development on soils with good, average, and poor production potentials were assessed and mapped. Thus, the amount and quality (potential for agricultural production) of arable land lost between the years 2000 and 2006 was identified. In addition, areas with high productivity potential around urban areas, indicating areas of potential future land use conflicts for Europe, were identified.

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The aim of this study is to relate the potential of land for a particular use in a given region with the actual land use. To this aim, the impact of several land cover flows related to urban development on soils with good, average, and poor production potentials were assessed and mapped. Thus, the amount and quality (potential for agricultural production) of agricultural land lost between the years 2000 and 2006 and the regions with major impact (hot spots) in Europe were identified.
The aim of this study is to relate the potential of land for a particular use in a given region...
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