Each country ratifying the European landscape convention (ELC) is responsible for identifying their landscapes, integrating their approaches about landscape planning into the other sectoral plannings. Although the studies to classify landscapes at local scale in our country have been carried out for the last four decades, those at national and regional scales have gained importance along with the ELC in recent years. In this study a method was developed related to the classification of national and regional landscapes with the geographical information systems (GIS) and remote sensing (RS) techniques by using computerized data about climate, geomorphology, geology, land cover and great soil groups on an accessible level according to the conditions of our country. In the method proposed to create landscape classes for the first time in Turkey, the related data was overlaid by using GIS and mapped with a coding system specific to our country at national and regional scales in the Konya closed basin, which is one of the 25 big river basins determined by the General Directorate of State Hydraulic Works (GDSH). The map of landscape character types is used for the assesment of landscape characters, developing policies about landscape planning, landscape protection and management, the works about environmental impact assessment (EIA), strategic environmental assesments, and developing policies and making decisions regarding the sectors such as agriculture, forestry, and industry. The reason for selecting the Konya closed basin, SuÄŸla Lake and its surrounding area as an area of research is that the Landscape Protection and Management project has been carried out in this area by the Ministry of Environment and Forestry and in this context; there is a database about the area. The research area has a significant biological diversity as well as climatic diversity. The Konya closed basin has an area of 53250 km2 and 367 national landscape character types have been determined with the implementation of the method to the area. SuÄŸla Lake and its surrounding area has an area of 740 km2 and it has 54 national landscape character types at national scale. When the entire basin is considered, this amount increases the importance of the research area in terms of landscape diversity. Determination of 214 landscape character types in SuÄŸla Lake and its surrounding area at regional level shows the importance of the landscape diversity of the area at regional level. As required by the ELC’s commitment, it is suggested that the related method be implemented to the other 24 big river basins and subregions by using the data sets suggested.
Key words: Landscape classification, landscape planning, landscape character assesment, Konya.
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