USGS - science for a changing world

Landcover Modeling

Phoenix, Arizona
2006 to 2050 Land-cover Change
IPCC SRES B1 Scenario
before
after

The IPCC SRES B1 scenario focuses on environmentally friendly lifestyles and a global cooperation and communication. Impacts on the natural landscape are minimized as efficiencies in food and energy production are accompanied by more compact urban development. Natural land covers such as forest, shrubland, grassland, and wetland fare better than in the economic-based A1B and A2 scenarios, but still experience modest declines due to urban development and the need for agricultural land to support food and energy needs.

In the Phoenix, Arizona area, the arid climate and limited utility of most lands for agricultural use or other anthropogenic uses limit land-cover change. Arid shrubland and desert currently dominates the region and is mostly maintained between 2006 and 2050. The exception is associated with urban expansion of the Phoenix metropolitan area, with expansion into the surrounding low elevation areas. Agricultural land and shrubland are both lost to urban expansion. However, a focus on sustainable development results in attempts to limit the impact of urban expansion, with large natural habitat patches maintained even in the lowlands surrounding Phoenix.

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Page Last Modified: March 21, 2016