Original Article

Environmental Geology

, Volume 53, Issue 3, pp 651-659

First online:

Monitoring land subsidence in Semarang, Indonesia

  • Muh Aris MarfaiAffiliated withInstitute of Geography, Justus-Liebig-UniversityGeography Faculty, Gadjah Mada University Email author 
  • , Lorenz KingAffiliated withInstitute of Geography, Justus-Liebig-University

Rent the article at a discount

Rent now

* Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT.

Get Access


Semarang is one of the biggest cities in Indonesia and nowadays suffering from extended land subsidence, which is due to groundwater withdrawal, to natural consolidation of alluvium soil and to the load of constructions. Land subsidence causes damages to infrastructure, buildings, and results in tides moving into low-lying areas. Up to the present, there has been no comprehensive information about the land subsidence and its monitoring in Semarang. This paper examines digital elevation model (DEM) and benchmark data in Geographic Information System (GIS) raster operation for the monitoring of the land subsidence in Semarang. This method will predict and quantify the extent of subsidence in future years. The future land subsidence prediction is generated from the expected future DEM in GIS environment using ILWIS package. The procedure is useful especially in areas with scarce data. The resulting maps designate the area of land subsidence that increases rapidly and it is predicted that in 2020, an area of 27.5 ha will be situated 1.5–2.0 m below sea level. This calculation is based on the assumption that the rate of land subsidence is linear and no action is taken to protect the area from subsidence.


Land subsidence Monitoring Digital elevation model ILWIS Semarang Indonesia