Assessing the impact of villagization program on land use land cover dynamics in Benishangul-Gumuz, Western Ethiopia


  • Aweke Aysheshim Benishangul-Gumuz Regional State Land Administration and Investment Office
  • Desalegn Yayeh Ayal Center for Food Security Studies, College of Development Studies, Addis Ababa University
  • Messay Mulugeta Center for Food Security Studies, College of Development Studies, Addis Ababa University



Benishangul-Gumuz, forest depletion, land use land cover change, population pressure


Planning for continuing natural resource management requires current information on the dynamics of land use and land cover. The aim of this paper was to analyze the impacts of the villagization program on land use land cover dynamics in Benishangul-Gumuz region, western Ethiopia. The study has employed a mixed-method research design using both primary and secondary sources. Multispectral LANDSAT satellite images with a 30 m resolution were acquired for land use land cover change detection between the years 1999, 2009, and 2022. Arc GIS 10.8, QGIS 3.28, ERDAS Imagine 2014, and Microsoft Excel software were used for image classification, accuracy assessment, and change detection. Six different land use land cover types: forest land, shrub and grassland, cultivated land, residential, bare land, and water bodies were identified between 1999 and 2022. The trends indicated a dramatic decrease at the rate of 27.2 ha of forestland, 17.1 ha of shrub and grassland, and 4.6 ha of water bodies per year, while the share of cultivated land, residential, and bare land has expanded at an average rate of 34.3 ha, 11.7 ha, and 2.9 ha per year respectively between 1999 and 2022. The phenomenon was caused by added population pressure due to villagization program, which in turn triggered farmland expansion and deforestation. It is recommended that raising local community awareness, reforestation, practicing land use plans, and promoting successful livelihood diversification could help to alleviate the issue and reroute the course of events in order to achieve sustainable natural resource management.


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How to Cite

Aysheshim, A., Ayal, D. Y., & Mulugeta, M. (2023). Assessing the impact of villagization program on land use land cover dynamics in Benishangul-Gumuz, Western Ethiopia. Journal of Degraded and Mining Lands Management, 11(1), 4837–4845.



Research Article