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Impact of Urbanization on the Hydrological Cycle of Migina Catchment, Rwanda

DOI: 10.4236/oalib.1102830, PP. 1-12

Subject Areas: Ecology, Hydrology, Environmental Sciences, Biodiversity, Conservation Biology, Agricultural Science, Natural Geography

Keywords: Water Resources, Urban Planning, Urbanization, Hydrological Cycle, Land Cover, Migina Catchment Rwanda

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Abstract

In this study, we carry out an assessment of the impact of urbanization on Butare, southern Rwanda and evaluate its effect on the hydrological process at the Migina catchment. We used data from the meteorological stations of the Migina catchment, land-use maps of the region (obtained in 1974 and 2010) and GIS technology in order to analyse hydrological fluctuations in Migina catchment and the expansion of Butare town. We observed that, between the two hydrological years (1974 and 2010) water runoff increased by over 3.5% with increasing flood risks. Furthermore, evapotranspiration and groundwater level have decreased by about 3% and 0.5% leading to water scarcity. Research on urban planning is necessary in order to improve on water resources management and reduce the effects of urbanization on water resources such as in the Migina catchment.

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Gatwaza, O. C. , Cao, X. and Beckline, M. (2016). Impact of Urbanization on the Hydrological Cycle of Migina Catchment, Rwanda. Open Access Library Journal, 3, e2830. doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.4236/oalib.1102830.

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