Fengkui Qian, director of land resources management, Shenyang Agricultural University (China)
Rattan Lal, faculty mentor
The land evaluation and site assessment (LESA) system, which is widely tested and applied for farmland protection in the United States, is introduced in Lingyuan County, Liaoning Province, Northeast China. The implementation of U.S LESA system is proven to be more efficient and scientific in guaranteeing stability and permanence of farmland compared with an adhoc administrative interference in the basic farmland protection.
Land Evaluation and Site Assessment (LESA) system provides a scientific theory and method for reference in farmland protection. The LESA system is combined by Land Evaluation (LE) subsystem and Site Assessment (SA) subsystems. The final scores of LESA for farmland parcels, combination of LE score and SA score, determined which lands should have the highest priority for preservation and recognized where already served by infrastructure were the most suitable for development.
The LESA system showed apparently advantages in full consideration of farmland soil quality and site conditions, and achieved more scientific zoning protection for the basic farmland. Finally it testified the ration of LE and SA (6:4) subsystem in LESA system really reflected characteristics of farmland utilization and protection in Lingyuan County.