Journal of Geographical Sciences ›› 2005, Vol. 15 ›› Issue (1): 97-105.doi: 10.1360/gs050112

• Climate and Environmental Change • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Historical drought and water disasters in the Weihe Plain

YIN Shuyan, HUANG Chunchang, LI Xinyan   

  1. College of Tourism and Environmental Sciences, Shaanxi Normal University, Xi'an 710062, China
  • Received:2004-10-28 Revised:2004-12-10 Online:2005-03-25 Published:2005-03-25
  • Supported by:

    National Social Science Foundation of China, No.04BZS022; National Key Subject Foundation of Historical Geography of Shaanxi Normal University, No.04002; Key Research Project of Shaanxi Normal University


Through detailed statistics and analysis of drought and water disasters in the Weihe Plain in the historical period, we discovered that in more than 2300 years (from 370 BC to 2000 AD), natural disasters occurred most frequently in two periods. One is from 610 to 850 AD (from the late Sui Dynasty to the late Tang Dynasty) and the other is from 1580 to 2000 AD (after the late Ming Dynasty). Different natural disasters occurred synchronously, that is to say, when the drought occurred frequently, water disasters occurred frequently in the same periods. Frequencies of natural disasters, on the one hand, connected with climate changes and development course of ancient cities, while on the other, related closely to population changes. The excessive exploitation of natural resources and human disturbance and damages to ecological environment are the major reasons for the increased drought and water disasters.

Key words: natural disasters, ancient city, human impact, the Weihe Plain