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Spatio-temporal relationships between oil palm plantation development, construction of palm oil processing mills and local factors derived from Landsat time series.

Authors: ATSUSHI TOMITA*, Land IQ
Topics: Remote Sensing, Land Use and Land Cover Change, Human-Environment Geography
Keywords: Oil palm plantation, Landsat time series, Land change study
Session Type: Paper
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


The booming oil palm plantation industry in tropical Asia is transforming both preexisting natural landscapes and landscapes affected by human activity into a wide-spread monoculture landscape. This drastic change will cause serious environmental degradation and have long-term impacts on local socioeconomics and land use. To grasp the process of land transformation, it is important to understand the roles of the local factors that are physically, economically and societally embedded at various spatial and temporal scales. Consequently, a satellite remote sensing method was developed in this study that could provide reliable spatio-temporal knowledge of land use and land cover changes at fine scales. A comprehensive, cloud-free Landsat dataset was created for northern part of Bengkulu Province, Indonesia using all the available Landsat data from 1988 to 2018. The two-tiered LCD/LD Model could detect not only large-scale land changes caused by private companies but also small-scale changes caused by smallholders, which is supposedly the most uncertain factor for considering the future development of oil palm development. The results underwrote the assumption that mills were the major local driver of oil palm development. In addition, the results strongly indicated that oil palm development had resulted in the construction of independent mills, whose locations and dates of construction were strongly connected to the profitability resulting from receiving a sufficient supply of fresh oil palm fruit bunches.

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