Soil Salinity Mapping and Monitoring in Arid and Semi-Arid Regions Using Remote Sensing Technology: A Review


Soil salinity is a serious environmental problem especially in arid and semiarid areas. It either occurs naturally or is human-induced. High levels of soil salinity negatively affect crop growth and productivity leading land degradation ultimately. Thus, it is important to monitor and map soil salinity at an early stage to enact effective soil reclamation program that helps lessen or prevent future increase in soil salinity. Remote sensing has outperformed the traditional method for assessing soil salinity offering more informative and professional rapid assessment techniques for monitoring and mapping soil salinity. Soil salinity can be identified from remote sensing data obtained by different sensors by way of direct indicators that refer to salt features that are visible at the soil surface as well as indirect indicators such as the presence of halophytic plant and assessing the performance level of salt-tolerant crops. The purposes of this paper are to 1) discuss some soil salinity indicators; 2) review the satellite sensors and methods used for remote monitoring, detecting and mapping of soil salinity, particularly in arid and semi-arid regions; 3) review various spectral vegetation and salinity indices that have been developed and proposed for soil salinity detection and mapping, with an emphasis on soil salinity mapping and assessment in arid and semi-arid regions; and 4) highlight the most important issues limiting the use of remote sensing for soil salinity mapping, particularly in arid and semi-arid regions.

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A. Allbed and L. Kumar, "Soil Salinity Mapping and Monitoring in Arid and Semi-Arid Regions Using Remote Sensing Technology: A Review," Advances in Remote Sensing, Vol. 2 No. 4, 2013, pp. 373-385. doi: 10.4236/ars.2013.24040.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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