Integrated Approach to Quantify the Impact of Land Use and Land Cover Changes onWater Quality of Surma River, Sylhet, Bangladesh

In Water
Peer-reviewed Article

This study aims to assess the impacts of land use and land cover (LULC) changes on
the water quality of the Surma river in Bangladesh. For this, seasonal water quality changes were
assessed in comparison to the LULC changes recorded from 2010 to 2019. Obtained results from this
study indicated that pH, electrical conductivity (EC), and total dissolved solids (TDS) concentrations
were higher during the dry season, while dissolved oxygen (DO), 5-day biological oxygen demand
(BOD5), temperature, total suspended solids (TSS), and total solids (TS) concentrations also changed
with the season. The analysis of LULC changes within 1000-m buffer zones around the sampling
stations revealed that agricultural and vegetation classes decreased; while built-up, waterbody and
barren lands increased. Correlation analyses showed that BOD5, temperature, EC, TDS, and TSS
had a significant relationship (5% level) with LULC types. The regression result indicated that
BOD5 was sensitive to changing waterbody (predictors, R2 = 0.645), temperature was sensitive to
changing waterbodies and agricultural land (R2 = 0.889); and EC was sensitive to built-up, vegetation,
and barren land (R2 = 0.833). Waterbody, built-up, and agricultural LULC were predictors for TDS
(R2 = 0.993); and waterbody, built-up, and barren LULC were predictors for TSS (R2 = 0.922). Built-up
areas and waterbodies appeared to have the strongest effect on different water quality parameters.
Scientific finding from this study will be vital for decision makers in developing more robust land
use management plan at the local level.

Md. Misbah