The available soil water capacity (ASWC) is important for studying crop production, agro-ecological zoning, irrigation planning, and land cover changes. Laboratory determined data of ASWC are often not available for most of soil profiles and the nationwide ASWC largely remains lacking in relevant soil data in China. This work was to estimate ASWC based on physical and chemical properties and analyze the spatial distribution of ASWC in China. The pedo-transfer functions (PTFs), derived from 220 survey data of ASWC, and the empirical data of ASWC based on soil texture were applied to quantify the ASWC. GIS technology was used to develop a spatial file of ASWC in China and the spatial distribution of ASWC was also analyzed. The results showed the value of ASWC ranges from 15 × 10-2 cm3·cm-3 to 22 × 10-2 cm3·cm-3 for most soil types, and few soil types are lower than 15 × 10-2 cm3·cm-3 or higher than 22 × 10-2 cm3·cm-3. The ASWC is different according to the complex soil types and their distribution. It is higher in the east than that in the west, and the values reduce from south to north except the northeastern part of China. The "high" values of ASWC appear in southeast, northeastern mountain regions and Northeast China Plain. The relatively "high" values of ASWC appear in Sichuan basin, Huang-Huai-Hai plain and the east of Inner Mongolia. The relatively "low" values are distributed in the west and the Loess Plateau of China. The "very low" value regions are the northern Tibetan Plateau and the desertified areas in northern China. In some regions, the ASWC changes according to the complex topography and different types of soils. Though there remains precision limitation, the spatial data of ASWC derived from this study are improved on current data files of soil water retention properties for Chinese soils. This study presents basic data and analysis methods for estimation and evaluation of ASWC in China.
The water of Bosten Lake was released to lower reaches of the Tarim River for 5 times from 2000 to 2002. The changes of total dissolved solid (TDS) and the major ions (SO2-4, Cl-, Na+, Ca2+, Mg2+ and HCO-3) were analyzed during this period. It was found out that TDS and the concentrations of the major ions initially and quickly increased and then decreased, but finally increased again. These changes were different at different distances from the river, which indicated that the groundwater changes relied on the distance from the river. In addition, the salt in groundwater was only diluted but not removed by the water. It was suggested that ecological measures should be sought to really promote the quality of the groundwater at the lower reaches of the Tarim River.
To reveal the changing trend and annual distribution of the surface water hydrology and the local climate in the Bayanbuluk alpine-cold wetlands in the past 50 years, we used temperature, precipitation, different rank precipitation days, evaporation, water vapor pressure, relative humidity, dust storm days and snow depth to analyze their temporal variations. We conclude that there were no distinct changes in annual mean temperature, and no obvious changes in the maximum or minimum temperatures. Precipitation in warm season was the main water source in the wetlands of the study area and accounted for 92.0% of the annual total. Precipitation dropped to the lowest in the mid-1980s in the past 50 years and then increased gradually. The runoff of the Kaidu River has increased since 1987 which has a good linear response to the annual precipitation and mean temperature in Bayanbuluk alpine-cold wetland. Climate change also affected ecosystems in this area due to its direct relations to the surface water environment.
Forty middle and small rivers in three towns of Fengjing, Songjiang and Zhujiajiao of suburban Shanghai were chosen as sampling sites for water quality research. Measurement results of DO, CODCr, TP, TN and so on show that the rivers are under heavy eutropic conditions, which are several times greater than the critical values of the worst level (Type V) of water. Water pollution situation has different temporal and spatial characteristics. Non-point pollution, such as village domestic sewage, farmland runoff, livestock feces, has become the primary source of pollution of the middle and small rivers in suburban Shanghai.
Water-quality deterioration and eutrophication of the Lake Dianchi have acquired more and more attention in the last few decades. In this paper, the spatial and temporal eutrophication status of the Lake Dianchi was assessed. The comprehensive trophic state index was chosen to assess the trophic status of the Lake Dianchi in the past 13 years. The result reveals that the trophic condition of Caohai is more serious than that of Waihai. Most of time Caohai was in extremely hypereutrophic state from 1988 to 2000. The trophic condition of Waihai had a worsening tendency from 1988 to 2000. Waihai was in eutrophic state before 1995, but it got in a hypereutrophic state after 1995. It was pointed out that TN and TP were the two biggest contributors of CTSIM in both Caohai and Waihai.
Sustainable development has become a primary objective for many countries and regions throughout the world now. The ecological footprint (EF) is a kind of concise method of quantifiably measuring the natural capital consumption and it can reflect the goal of sustainability. In this paper, the concept, the theory and method of ecological footprint are introduced. On this basis, the study brings forward the method of ecological footprint and capacity prediction. The method is employed for the ecological footprint prediction combining consumption model with population model and the technique is adopted for the ecological capacity (EC) prediction uniting the Geographical Cellular Automata (Geo CA) and Geographic Information System (GIS). The above models and methods are employed to calculate EF and EC in 1995 and 2000 and predict them in 2005 in Hexi Corridor. The result shows that EF is continually increasing, and EC ascended in the anterior 5 years and will descend in the posterior 5 years. This suit of method is of the character of accuracy and speediness.
The eco-environmental restoration has been a chief task of the western development strategies carried out by the central and local governments of China since the late 1990s, and the ecological de-farming has been regarded as a powerful measure for the ecological restoration in the Loess Plateau and the upper reaches of the Yangtze River. "Relieving and de-farming" (RD) and "rebuilding terrace and de-farming" (RTD) are two more mature ones among various de-farming modes. Taking the loess hilly-gully region as a case, this paper summarized the basic characteristics of RD and RTD modes, calculated the sizes of de-farming slope farmland, rebuilt terraces, enlarged garden plots and restored vegetation, and compared the differences of two modes in terms of de-farming area, ecological reestablishment index, investment demand amount and benefits. The results showed that RTD mode has many advantages, including suitable investment, sufficient grain supply and great benefits, and will be the best ecological reestablishment mode in the loess hilly-gully region, and RD mode which is being carried out in this region should be replaced by RTD mode as soon as possible.
Greenhouse-gas (GHG) emissions in China have aroused much interest, and not least in recent evidence of their reduction. Our intent is to place that reduction in a larger context, that of the process of industrialization. A lengthy time perspective is combined with a cross-sectional approach-China plus five other countries-and addressed through two general models. The findings are salutary. First, they suggest that a diversified economic structure is consistent with diminished intensity in energy use. Secondly, and the obverse of the first, they imply that a diversified energy structure promotes reductions in CO2 emissions. Finally, one is led inevitably to the conclusion that, together, the findings point to a path for countries to transform their economies while at the same time undertaking to drastically moderate their energy use, switching from a pattern of heavy carbon emissions to one in which lighter carbon emissions prevail. The implications of such findings for environmental management are enormous.
The Yangtze delta area is among the fastest developing areas in China. Here there are mega-cities like Shanghai, Nanjing and the attached urban areas of different sizes including those along the lower reaches of the Yangtze River from Shanghai up to Nanjing as well as their satellite cities and towns, forming one of the most densely distributed urban areas in China. This is a case study done in Suzhou city at the center of the Yangtze delta to reflect the impact of urban sprawl on soil resources using satellite images and digital soil databases. The extent of the developed land in the studied area and the impact of development on soil resources at 1:100,000 scale are estimated and the soil types impacted most by urbanization development are determined through overlaying the soil map on the satellite images (Landsat-7) of the studied area at different times (1984, 1995, 2000 and 2003). The methodology for this study consists of analyzing data resulting from using a geographic information system (GIS) to combine urban land use maps of different times derived from satellite images with data on soil characteristics contained in the established soil databases by which some results come into being to present the fast expanding trend of urbanization in the Yangtze delta area, the urban spread and the soils occupied by the urbanization process, and also the quality of the occupied soils.
Ecosystem services are premises for human beings to exist and develop in the world, and it is of importance to study effects of land use change on ecosystem functions. Songnen plain, located in Northeast China, is one of the national key bases for agricultural production. Because there were remarkable variations in land use in recent years, it can supply specific foundation for protection and restoration of regional eco-environment to explore changes in its values of ecosystem services. This study aims to qualify long-term changes in land use of Songnen plain from 1980 to 2000, and to explore the impact of land use change on ecosystem services. With 2-period land use data using RS and GIS, this paper analyzed changes in land use and in ecosystem service values using the ecosystem service value coefficients (VC) put forward by Costanza et al. Results showed that from 1980 to 2000, area of rangeland, water area and wetlands and area of cropland decreased, but urban area and unused land increased. Due to cropland's comparatively low VC and comparatively high VC of wetlands and water area, increment in cultivated land could not offset the total decrement in regional ecosystem service values because of the decrease in area of wetlands and water area. Meanwhile, city sprawl has also led to loss of ecological values. Total ecosystem service values of the study area reduced dramatically, from 34,926.10×106$ to 31,744.54×106$ in the period 1980-2000. This represents a 9.11% net decline in annual value of ecosystem services in the study area.
In this paper, we discuss the development of electronic atlas in China, with focus on the issues of visualization. We particularly categorise this development into four periods, and then analyse the characters in each period and discuss the visualization issues. The four periods are highlighted: 1) Infant period (<1990) characterized as computer assisted mapping with products of screen maps; 2) Starting period (1991-1995) characterized as object-oriented mapping with products of interactive maps/atlases; 3) Advancing period (1996-2000) characterized as integrated mapping with products of multimedia cartographic maps; 4) New era (> 2001) characterized as web mapping and adaptive map design with products of Internet maps and atlas as well as adaptive maps. It is obvious that the development follows the logical way from static to dynamic, and even real time visualization, from single user to multiple users, from presentation to exploration for effective communication and knowledge construction. Current research and development projects are focused on customisation of atlas information systems for real-time tasks, Internet operability, small displays and mobile environments. The major challenges involved in each of such customisation processes are identified and commented in relation to the further development of visualization.
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.
Landscape spatial pattern mainly refers to the distribution of patches, which are different in size and shape in space owing to the interaction of various ecological activities. In landscape ecology study, landscape pattern has been one of the key study areas. Water body landscape plays an important role in the development history of a city, but at present city water body landscape in many cities has been destroyed, hence protecting water body in the city is becoming more and more important. In order to protect city water body landscape reasonably, the precondition is to probe the dynamics of water body landscape. Based on historical data and remote sensing data, six indexes including patch number, patch area, landscape dominance index, fractal dimension, patch density and connectivity index etc. were used to analyze landscape pattern dynamics of water body in Kaifeng city since the end of the Qing Dynasty (in the 20th century). The results showed: (1) Since the end of the Qing Dynasty, landscape area of water body in Kaifeng city increased first and then decreased from 1898 to 2002AD; the landscape dominant degree had the same changing tendency with the area. (2) Patch number of water body landscape in Kaifeng city had an increase from 1898 to 2002, but maximum area of patch, minimum area of patch and average area of patch decreased, which resulted in an increase in landscape fragment degree. (3) Connectivity index decreased and fractal dimension increased from 1898 to 2002. The reasons for these changes were the repeated overflows and flooding of the Yellow River and the influence of human activities.
According to the field investigation, observation by an electronic microscope and x-ray identification and chemical analysis, desert-steppe migration in the Loess Plateau at about 450 kaBP was studied. The data show that gypsum illuvial horizon indicating the desert-steppe environment developed in the early stage of the formation of the fifth layer loess in Shaoling tableland in Chang'an and Bailu tableland in Xi'an of Shaanxi are situated in the southern Loess Plateau. This indicates that remarkable drying occurred, a large-scope migration of desert steppe took place toward south and the climate zone migrated 5 degrees in latitude to south which is the largest migration range indicated by geochemical indexes. The desert-steppe and more wild environment distributed widely on the Loess Plateau at that time. The development of gypsum also indicates that the climate changed at 450 kaBP from monsoon climate to nonmonsoon climate in the Loess Plateau, and the region was not affected by summer monsoon and was in the cold and dry environment of nonmonsoon climate. Annual mean precipitation was about 200 mm, 400 mm less at that time than at present.
The landscape fragmentation caused by road construction has many direct and indirect impacts on wildlife and ecosystems. By using the GIS and statistic software of fragmentation computation, a comprehensive index, road-induced landscape fragmentation index (RLFI), is proposed to quantify the degree of landscape fragmentation resulting from different levels of road constructions. The results show that road-induced fragmentation index in China ranges from 0.987 to 3.357, with a mean of 1.846 in 2002. The regional differences of landscape fragmentation are obvious and scoring sequence is: North China (2.65) > East China (2.62) > Central China (2.60) > South China (2.51) > Southwest China (2.34) > Northeast China (2.19) > Inner Mongolia (1.88) > Northwest China (1.67) > Qinghai-Tibet Plateau (1.65). The anisotropic analysis indicates that the variation of fragmentation index in east-west direction is larger than that in south-north direction.