This essay combines the Defense Meteorological Satellite Program Operational Linescan System (DMSP-OLS) nighttime light data and the Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) nighttime light data into a “synthetic DMSP” dataset, from 1992 to 2020, to retrieve the spatio-temporal variations in energy-related carbon emissions in Xinjiang, China. Then, this paper analyzes several influencing factors for spatial differentiation of carbon emissions in Xinjiang with the application of geographical detector technique. Results reveal that (1) total carbon emissions continued to grow, while the growth rate slowed down in the past five years. (2) Large regional differences exist in total carbon emissions across various regions. Total carbon emissions of these regions in descending order are the northern slope of the Tianshan (Mountains) > the southern slope of the Tianshan > the three prefectures in southern Xinjiang > the northern part of Xinjiang. (3) Economic growth, population size, and energy consumption intensity are the most important factors of spatial differentiation of carbon emissions. The interaction between economic growth and population size as well as between economic growth and energy consumption intensity also enhances the explanatory power of carbon emissions’ spatial differentiation. This paper aims to help formulate differentiated carbon reduction targets and strategies for cities in different economic development stages and those with different carbon intensities so as to achieve the carbon peak goals in different steps.
Ecosystem services are substantial elements for human society. The central challenge to meet the human needs from ecosystems while sustain the Earth’s life support systems makes it urgent to enhance efficient natural resource management for sustainable ecological and socioeconomic development. Trade-off analysis of ecosystem services can help to identify optimal decision points to balance the costs and benefits of the diverse human uses of ecosystems. In this sense, the aim of this paper is to provide key insights into ecosystem services trade-off analysis at different scales from a land use perspective, by comprehensively reviewing the trade-offs analysis tools and approaches that addressed in ecology, economics and other fields. The review will significantly contribute to future research on trade-off analysis to avoid inferior management options and offer a win-win solution based on comprehensive and efficient planning for interacting multiple ecosystem services.
Land use/cover change is an important theme on the impacts of human activities on the earth systems and global environmental change. National land-use changes of China during 2010-2015 were acquired by the digital interpretation method using the high-resolution remotely sensed images, e.g. the Landsat 8 OLI, GF-2 remote sensing images. The spatiotemporal characteristics of land-use changes across China during 2010-2015 were revealed by the indexes of dynamic degree model, annual land-use changes ratio etc. The results indicated that the built-up land increased by 24.6×103 km2 while the cropland decreased by 4.9×103 km2, and the total area of woodland and grassland decreased by 16.4×103 km2. The spatial pattern of land-use changes in China during 2010-2015 was concordant with that of the period 2000-2010. Specially, new characteristics of land-use changes emerged in different regions of China in 2010-2015. The built-up land in eastern China expanded continually, and the total area of cropland decreased, both at decreasing rates. The rates of built-up land expansion and cropland shrinkage were accelerated in central China. The rates of built-up land expansion and cropland growth increased in western China, while the decreasing rate of woodland and grassland accelerated. In northeastern China, built-up land expansion slowed continually, and cropland area increased slightly accompanied by the conversions between paddy land and dry land. Besides, woodland and grassland area decreased in northeastern China. The characteristics of land-use changes in eastern China were essentially consistent with the spatial govern and control requirements of the optimal development zones and key development zones according to the Major Function-oriented Zones Planning implemented during the 12th Five-Year Plan (2011-2015). It was a serious challenge for the central government of China to effectively protect the reasonable layout of land use types dominated with the key ecological function zones and agricultural production zones in central and western China. Furthermore, the local governments should take effective measures to strengthen the management of territorial development in future.
Detailed analysis of Land Use/Land Cover (LULC) using remote sensing data in complex irrigated basins provides complete profile for better water resource management and planning. Using remote sensing data, this study provides detailed land use maps of the Lower Chenab Canal irrigated region of Pakistan from 2005 to 2012 for LULC change detection. Major crop types are demarcated by identifying temporal profiles of NDVI using MODIS 250 m × 250 m spatial resolution data. Wheat and rice are found to be major crops in rabi and kharif seasons, respectively. Accuracy assessment of prepared maps is performed using three different techniques: error matrix approach, comparison with ancillary data and with previous study. Producer and user accuracies for each class are calculated along with kappa coefficients (K). The average overall accuracies for rabi and kharif are 82.83% and 78.21%, respectively. Producer and user accuracies for individual class range respectively between 72.5% to 77% and 70.1% to 84.3% for rabi and 76.6% to 90.2% and 72% to 84.7% for kharif. The K values range between 0.66 to 0.77 for rabi with average of 0.73, and from 0.69 to 0.74 with average of 0.71 for kharif. LULC change detection indicates that wheat and rice have less volatility of change in comparison with both rabi and kharif fodders. Transformation between cotton and rice is less common due to their completely different cropping conditions. Results of spatial and temporal LULC distributions and their seasonal variations provide useful insights for establishing realistic LULC scenarios for hydrological studies.
Runoff calculation is one of the key components in the hydrological modeling. For a certain spatial scale, runoff is a very complex nonlinear process. Currently, the runoff yield model in different hydrological models is not unique. The Chinese LCM model and the American SCS model describe runoff at the macroscopic scale, taking into account the relationship between total actual retention and total rainfall and having a certain similarity. In this study, by comparing the two runoff yield models using theoretical analyses and numerical simulations, we have found that: (1) the SCS model is a simple linear representation of the LCM model, and the LCM model reflects more significantly the nonlinearity of catchment runoff. (2) There are strict mathematical relationships between parameters (R, r) of the LCM model and between parameters (S) of the SCS model, respectively. Parameters (R, r) of the LCM can be determined using the research results of the SCS model parameters. (3) LCM model parameters (R, r) can be easily obtained by field experiments, while SCS parameters (S) are difficult to measure. Therefore, parameters (R, r) of the LCM model also can provide the foundation for the SCS model. (4) The SCS model has a linear relationship between the reciprocal of total actual retention and the reciprocal of total rainfall during runoff period. The one-order terms of a Taylor series expansion of the LCM model describe the same relationship, which is worth further study.
Urbanization can profoundly influence the ecosystem service for biodiversity conservation. However, few studies have investigated this effect, which is significant for maintaining regional sustainable development. We take the rapidly developing, mountainous and biodiversity hotspot region, Jinghong, in southern Yunnan Province as the case study. An integrated ecosystem service model (PANDORA) is used to evaluate this regional BESV (ecosystem service value for biodiversity conservation). The modeled BESV is sensitive to landscape connectivity changes. From the 1970s to 2010, regional urban lands increased from 18.64 km2 to 36.81 km2, while the BESV decreased from $6.08 million year-1 to $5.32 million year-1. Along with distance gradients from the city center to the fringe, BESV varies as an approximate hump-shaped pattern. Because correlation analysis reveals a stronger influence of landscape composition on spatial BESV estimates than the landscape configuration does, we conclude that the projected urban expansion will accelerate the BESV reduction. Of the projected urban land, 95% will show a decreasing BESV trend by approximately $2 m-2 year-1. To prevent this, we recommend compact urban planning for the mountainous city.
Actual evapotranspiration is a key process of hydrological cycle and a sole term that links land surface water balance and land surface energy balance.Evapotranspiration plays a key role in simulating hydrological effect of climate change,and a review of evapotranspiration estimation methods in hydrological models is of vital importance.This paper firstly summarizes the evapotranspiration estimation methods applied in hydrological models and then classifies them into the integrated converting methods and the classification gathering methods by their mechanism.Integrated converting methods are usually used in hydrological models and two differences exist among them:one is in the potential evaporation estimation methods,while the other in the function for defining relationship between potential evaporation and actual evapotranspiration.Due to the higher information requirements of the Penman-Monteith method and the existing data uncertainty,simplified empirical methods for calculating potential and actual evapotranspiration are widely used in hydrological models. Different evapotranspiration calculation methods are used depending on the complexity of the hydrological model,and importance and difficulty in the selection of the most suitable evapotranspiration methods is discussed.Finally,this paper points out the prospective development trends of the evapotranspiration estimating methods in hydrological modeling.
Urban agglomerations are an inevitable outcome of China’s new national industrialization and urbanization reaching relatively advanced stages of development over the past 30 years. In the early 2000s, urban agglomerations became new geographical units for participating in global competition and the international division of labor, and China has spent the past decade promoting them as the main spaces for pushing forward its new form of urbanization. The convening of the first Central Work Conference on Urbanization and the National New-type Urbanization Plan (2014-2020) further defined the status of urban agglomerations as the main players in promoting China’s new type of national urbanization. Nevertheless, urban agglomerations remain a weak link in Chinese academia and are in urgent need of study. Only 19 articles on the theme of urban agglomerations were published in the journal Acta Geographica Sinica between 1934 and 2013, accounting for only 0.55% of all articles written during that period. Not only are there very few, they have also all been published within a relatively short period of time, with the first having been published only 10 years ago. The studies are also concentrated among only a few authors and institutions, and research is aimed at national requirements but is rather divergent. Even so, some studies on urban agglomerations have played a leading role and made important contributions to dictating the overall formation of urban agglomerations nationwide. Specifically, a proposed spatial pattern for urban agglomerations formed the basic framework for the spatial structure of China’s urban agglomerations and guided the government to make urban agglomerations the main urban pattern when promoting the new type of urbanization; proposed standards and technologies for identifying the spatial dimensions of urban agglomerations played an important role in defining the scope of national urban agglomerations; a series of studies in the area of urban agglomerations spurred more in-depth and practical studies in the field; and studies on issues related to the formation and growth of urban agglomerations provided warnings on the future selection and development of urban agglomerations. Taking the progress and results of these studies as a foundation, the foci of selecting and developing urban agglomerations in China are as follows: to be problem-oriented and profoundly reflect on and review new problems exposed in the selection and development of urban agglomerations; to concentrate on urban agglomerations and lay importance on the formation of a new “5+9+6” spatial structure for China’s urban agglomerations; to rely on urban agglomerations and promote the formation of a new pattern of national urbanization along the main axes highlighted by urban agglomerations; to be guided by national strategic demand and continue to deepen understanding of major scientific issues in the course of the formation and development of urban agglomerations, including studying the resource and environmental effects of high-density urban agglomerations, scientifically examining resource and environmental carrying capacities of high-density urban agglomerations, creating new management systems and government coordination mechanisms for the formation and development of urban agglomerations, studying the establishment of public finance systems and public finance reserve mechanisms for urban agglomerations, and studying and formulating technical specifications for urban agglomeration planning and standards for delineating urban agglomeration boundaries.
The core objective of rural vitalization is to systemically establish a coupling pattern of various rural development elements including population, land and industry. As one of the prerequisites, land resources is required to be optimally allocated via land consolidation. Consequently, land consolidation contributes greatly to population agglomeration, industrial development and resources support under the context of combating rural decline. Based on the key elements affecting rural development, this paper elaborates the connotation of rural vitalization and land consolidation in the new era as well as their relationships. Furthermore, the paper analyzes the alternative paths for achieving rural vitalization via land consolidation, and discusses the future directions of land consolidation and rural vitalization. The conclusions are drawn as follows: (1) To cope with the loss and decline of the intrinsic elements in rural areas, rural vitalization is a development strategy aimed at realizing economic, political, cultural and ecological rejuvenation in rural area by reshaping socio-economic morphology and spatial pattern in rural territory. (2) From the perspective of rural vitalization, land consolidation is endowed with new connotation, which should not only target at activating the key elements of rural development, but also place emphasis on coordinating material space and spirit core as well as integrating the restructuring of the physical space and the rural governance system. (3) Land consolidation should be compatible with regional natural conditions and the current stage of socio-economic development. According to the principle of regional planning and classification strategy, the appropriate models and paths should be adopted to promote the benign interactions of population, land and industry based on engineering techniques and ecological means. (4) Under the background of national strategy of rural vitalization, it is necessary to reshape the value orientation of land consolidation based on a scientific understanding of urban-rural relations and rural territorial functions, coordinate land consolidation planning and rural vitalization planning under the unified spatial planning system, and explore the new model combining land consolidation and multifunctional agriculture.
China is physically and socio-economically susceptible to global warming-derived high temperature extremes because of its vast area and high urban population density. This article presents a scenario-based analysis method for high temperature extremes aimed at illustrating the latter’s hazardous potential and exposure across China. Based on probability analysis, high temperature extreme scenarios with return periods of 5, 10, 20, and 50 years were designed, with a high temperature hazard index calculated by integrating two differentially-weighted extreme temperature indices (maximum temperature and high temperature days). To perform the exposure analysis, a land use map was employed to determine the spatial distribution of susceptible human activities under the different scenarios. The results indicate that there are two heat-prone regions and a sub-hotspot occupying a relatively small land area. However, the societal and economic consequences of such an environmental impact upon the North China Plain and middle/lower Yangtze River Basin would be substantial due to the concentration of human activities in these areas.
Hydrological processes were compared, with and without the influence of precipitation on discharge, to identify the differences between glacierized and non-glacierized catchments in the Urumqi River source region, on the northern slope of the eastern Tianshan Mountains, during the melting season (May-September) in 2011. The study was based on hydrological data observed at 10-min intervals, meteorological data observed at 15-min intervals, and glacier melting and snow observations from the Empty Cirque, Zongkong, and Urumqi Glacier No.1 gauging stations. The results indicated that the discharge differed markedly among the three gauging stations. The daily discharge was more than the nightly discharge at the Glacier No.1 gauging station, which contrasted with the patterns observed at the Zongkong and Empty Cirque gauging stations. There was a clear daily variation in the discharge at the three gauging stations, with differences in the magnitude and duration of the peak discharge. When precipitation was not considered, the time-lags between the maximum discharge and the highest temperature were 1-3 h, 10-16 h, and 5-11 h at the Glacier No.1, Empty Cirque, and Zongkong gauging stations, respectively. When precipitation was taken into consideration, the corresponding time-lags were 0-1 h, 13 h, and 6-7 h, respectively. Therefore, the duration from the generation of discharge to confluence was the shortest in the glacierized catchment and the longest in the catchment where was mainly covered by snow. It was also shown that the hydrological process from the generation of discharge to confluence shortened when precipitation was considered. The factors influencing changes in the discharge among the three gauging stations were different. For Glacier No.1 station, the discharge was mainly controlled by heat conditions in the glacierized region, and the discharge displayed an accelerated growth when the temperature exceeded 5°C in the melt season. It was found that the englacial and subglacial drainage channel of Glacier No.1 had become simpler during the past 20 years. Its weaker retardance and storage of glacier melting water resulted in rapid discharge confluence. It was also shown that the discharge curve and the time-lag between the maximum discharge and the highest temperature could be used to reveal the evolution of the drainage system and the process of glacier and snow melting at different levels of glacier coverage.
Global warming has been one of the major concerns behind the world’s high-speed economic growth. How to implement the coordinated development of the carbon footprint and the economy will be the core issue of the world’s economic and social development, as well as the heated debate of the research at home and abroad in recent years. Based on the energy consumption, integrated with the “Top-Down” life cycle approach and geographically weighted regression (GWR) model, this paper analyzed the spatial differences and multi-mechanism of carbon footprint in provincial China in 2010. Firstly, this study calculated the amount of carbon footprint of each province using “Top-Down” life cycle approach and found that there were significant differences of carbon footprint and per capita carbon footprint in provincial China. The provinces with higher carbon footprint, mainly located in northern China, have large economic scales; the provinces with higher per capita carbon footprint are mainly distributed in central cities such as Beijing, Shanghai and energy-rich regions and heavy chemical bases. Secondly, with the aid of GIS and spatial analysis model (GWR model), this paper had unfolded that the expansion of economic scale is the main driver of the rapid growth of carbon footprint. The growth of population and urbanization also acted as promoting factors for the increase of the carbon footprint. Energy structure had no considerable promoting effect for the increase of the carbon footprint. Improving energy efficiency is the most important factor to inhibit the growing carbon footprint. Thirdly, developing low-carbon economies and low-carbon industries, as well as advocating low-carbon city construction and improving carbon efficiency would be the primary approaches to inhibit the rapid growth of carbon footprint. Moderately controlling the economic scale and population size would also be required to alleviate carbon footprint. Meanwhile, environmental protection and construction of low-carbon cities would evoke extensive attention in the process of urbanization.
The objective of this study was to investigate the concentration and spatial distribution patterns of 9 potentially toxic heavy metal elements (As, Cd, Co, Cr, Pb, Cu, Zn, Mn, and Ni) in road dust in the Bayan Obo Mining Region in Inner Mongolia, China. Contamination levels were evaluated using the geoaccumulation index and the enrichment factor. Human health risks for each heavy metal element were assessed using a human exposure model. Results showed that the dust contained significantly elevated heavy metal elements concentrations compared with the background soil. The spatial distribution pattern of all tested metals except for As coincided with the locations of industrial areas while the spatial distribution of As was associated with domestic sources. The contamination evaluation indicated that Cd, Pb, and Mn in road dust mainly originated from anthropogenic sources with a rating of “heavily polluted” to “extremely polluted,” whereas the remaining metals originated from both natural and anthropogenic sources with a level of “moderately polluted”. The non-cancer health risk assessment showed that ingestion was the primary exposure route for all metals in the road dust and that Mn, Cr, Pb, and As were the main contributors to non-cancer risks in both children and adults. Higher HI values were calculated for children (HI=1.89), indicating that children will likely experience higher health risks compared with adults (HI=0.23). The cancer risk assessment showed that Cr was the main contributor, with cancer risks which were 2-3 orders of magnitude higher than those for other metals. Taken in concert, the non-cancer risks posed by all studied heavy metal elements and the cancer risks posed by As, Co, Cr, Cd, and Ni to both children and adults in Bayan Obo Mining Region fell within the acceptable range.
China has witnessed unprecedented urbanization over the past decades. The rapid expansion of urban population has been dominantly contributed by the floating population from rural areas, of which the spatiotemporal patterns, driving forces, and multidimensional effects are scrutinized and evaluated in this study by using the latest national censuses conducted in 2000 and 2010. Analysis based on the county-level data comes to conclusions as follows. The spatial pattern of floating population has remained stable over the first decade of the new century. The top 1% cities with the largest floating population received 45.5% of all migrants in China. As the rapid development of mega-city regions, the coastal concentration areas of floating population tended to geographically united as a whole, whereas the spatial distribution of migrants within each region varied significantly. The migrant concentration area in the Yangtze River Delta was the largest and its expansion was also the most salient. However, the floating population has growingly moved into provincial capitals and other big cities in the inland regions and its gravity center has moved northward for around 110 km during the study period. The spatial pattern of floating population has been formed jointly by the state and market forces in transitional China and the impacts of state forces have been surpassed by those of market forces in the country as a whole. The attractiveness of coastal cities and counties to the floating population comes mainly from the nonagricultural employment opportunities and public services, reflecting that long-distance and long-term migrants have moved coastward not only to gain employment but also to enjoy city life. By contrast, in the central and western regions, places with a higher economic development level and at a higher administrative level are more attractive to floating populations, demonstrating that the state remains to play an important role in allocating economic resources and promoting regional development in inland China. As the main body of new urban residents, the floating population has contributed substantially to the elevation of the urbanization levels of migrant-sending and -receiving places, by 20.0% and 49.5% respectively. Compared with extensively investigated interprovincial migrants, intra-provincial migrants have higher intention and ability to permanently live in cities and thus might become the main force of China’s urbanization in the coming decades. The internal migration has also reshaped China’s urban system in terms of its hierarchical organization and spatial structure.
Accompanying the rapid growth of China’s population and economy, energy consumption and carbon emission increased significantly from 1978 to 2012. China is now the largest energy consumer and CO2 emitter of the world, leading to much interest in researches on the nexus between energy consumption, carbon emissions and low-carbon economy. This article presents the domestic Chinese studies on this hotpot issue, and we obtain the following findings. First, most research fields involve geography, ecology and resource economics, and research contents contained some analysis of current situation, factors decomposition, predictive analysis and the introduction of methods and models. Second, there exists an inverted “U-shaped” curve connection between carbon emission, energy consumption and economic development. Energy consumption in China will be in a low-speed growth after 2035 and it is expected to peak between 6.19-12.13 billion TCE in 2050. China’s carbon emissions are expected to peak in 2035, or during 2020 to 2045, and the optimal range of carbon emissions is between 2.4-3.3 PgC/year (1 PgC=1 billion tons C) in 2050. Third, future research should be focused on global carbon trading, regional carbon flows, reforming the current energy structure, reducing energy consumption and innovating the low-carbon economic theory, as well as establishing a comprehensive theoretical system of energy consumption, carbon emissions and low-carbon economy.
GIMMS (Global Inventory Modeling and Mapping Studies) NDVI (Normalised Difference Vegetation Index) from 1982 to 2006 and MODIS (Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) NDVI from 2001 to 2010 were blended to extract the grass coverage and analyze its spatial pattern. The response of grass coverage to climatic variations at annual and monthly time scales was analyzed. Grass coverage distribution had increased from northwest to southeast across China. During 1982-2010, the mean nationwide grass coverage was 34% but exhibited apparent spatial heterogeneity, being the highest (61.4%) in slope grasslands and the lowest (17.1%) in desert grasslands. There was a slight increase of the grass coverage with a rate of 0.17% per year. Increase in slope grasslands coverage was as high as 0.27% per year, while in the plain grasslands and meadows the grass coverage increase was the lowest (being 0.11% per year and 0.1% per year, respectively). Across China, the grass coverage with extremely significant increase (P<0.01) and significant increase (P<0.05) accounted for 46.03% and 11% of the total grassland area, respectively, while those with extremely significant and significant decrease accounted for only 4.1% and 3.24%, respectively. At the annual time scale, there are no significant correlations between grass coverage and annual mean temperature and precipitation. However, the grass coverage was somewhat affected by temperature in alpine and sub-alpine grassland, alpine and sub-alpine meadow, slope grassland and meadow, while grass coverage in desert grassland and plain grassland was more affected by precipitation. At the monthly time-scale, there are significant correlations between grass coverage with both temperature and precipitation, indicating that the grass coverage is more affected by seasonal fluctuations of hydrothermal conditions. Additionally, there is one-month time lag-effect between grass coverage and climate factors for each grassland types.
China has been experiencing an unprecedented urbanization process. In 2011, China’s urban population reached 691 million with an urbanization rate of 51.27%. Urbanization level is expected to increase to 70% in China in 2030, reflecting the projection that nearly 300 million people would migrate from rural areas to urban areas over this period. At the same time, the total fertility rate of China’s population is declining due to the combined effect of economic growth, environmental carrying capacity, and modern social consciousness. The Chinese government has loosened its “one-child policy” gradually by allowing childbearing couples to have the second child as long as either of them is from a one-child family. In such rapidly developing country, the natural growth and spatial migration will consistently reshape spatial pattern of population. An accurate prediction of the future spatial pattern of population and its evolution trend are critical to key policy-making processes and spatial planning in China including urbanization, land use development, ecological conservation and environmental protection. In this paper, a top-down method is developed to project the spatial distribution of China’s future population with considerations of both natural population growth at provincial level and the provincial migration from 2010 to 2050. Building on this, the spatial pattern and evolution trend of Chinese provincial population are analyzed. The results suggested that the overall spatial pattern of Chinese population will be unlikely changed in next four decades, with the east area having the highest population density and followed by central area, northeast and west area. Four provinces in the east, Shanghai, Beijing, Tianjin and Jiangsu, will remain the top in terms of population density in China, and Xinjiang, Qinghai and Tibet will continue to have the lowest density of population. We introduced an index system to classify the Chinese provinces into three categories in terms of provincial population densities: Fast Changing Populated Region (FCPR), Low Changing Populated Region (LCPR) and Inactive Populated Region (IPR). In the FCPR, China’s population is projected to continue to concentrate in net immigration leading type (NILT) area where receives nearly 99% of new accumulated floating population. Population densities of Shanghai, Beijing, Zhejiang will peak in 2030, while the population density in Guangdong will keep increasing until 2035. Net emigration leading type (NELT) area will account for 75% of emigration population, including Henan, Anhui, Chongqing and Hubei. Natural growth will play a dominant role in natural growth leading type area, such as Liaoning and Shandong, because there will be few emigration population. Due to the large amount of moving-out labors and gradually declining fertility rates, population density of the LCPR region exhibits a downward trend, except for Fujian and Hainan. The majority of the western provinces will be likely to remain relatively low population density, with an average value of no more than 100 persons per km2.
The heating effect (or mass elevation effect, MEE) of the Tibetan Plateau (TP) is intense due to its massive body. Some studies have been undertaken on its role as the heat source in summer and its implications for Asian climate, but little has been known of the implications of its MEE for the distribution of mountain altitudinal belts (MABs). Using air temperature data observed and remotely sensed data, MAB/treeline data, and ASTER GDEM data, this paper compares the height of MABs and alpine treelines in the main TP and the surrounding mountains/lowland and explains the difference from the point of view of MEE. The results demonstrate: 1) at same elevation, air temperature and the length of growing season gradually increase from the eastern edge to the interior TP, e.g., at 4500 m (corresponding to the mean altitude of the TP), the monthly mean temperature is 3.58°C higher (April) to 6.63°C higher (June) in the interior plateau than in the Sichuan Basin; the 10°C isotherm for the warmest month goes upward from the edge to the interior of the plateau, at 4000 m in the Qilian Mts. and the eastern edges of the plateau, and up to 4600-5000 m in Lhasa and Zuogong; the warmth index at an altitude of 4500 m can be up to 15°C·month in the interior TP, but much lower at the eastern edges. 2) MABs and treeline follow a similar trend of rising inwards: dark-coniferous forest is 1000-1500 m higher and alpine steppe is about 700-900 m higher in the interior TP than at the eastern edges.
Rural tourism has become an important driving force of rural urbanization in China. As the main reception base and important tourism attraction, tourism village is the core element of the tourism destination system. Integrating the method of PRA (Participatory Rural Assessment), GIS technology and high-resolution remote sensing images, this study aims to analyze the spatial morphology evolution of rural settlements induced by tourism through a comparative study of three tourism villages in Yesanpo tourism area. The results suggest the emergence of a “core-periphery” pattern of the spatial evolution of rural settlements. The closer to the core scenic spot, the higher degree of land-use intensity the village shows, as well as the more mature tourism function and greater change in landscape pattern. In particular, Gougezhuang shows an increase of the floor area ratio from 0.17 to 0.44, with the most mature tourism function and the lowest authenticity index of 0.448. Liujiahe has gone through the largest increase in construction land area from 17.3564 ha to 34.1128 ha, with moderately mature tourism function and relatively stable authenticity index of 0.566. Shangzhuang has the lowest construction land scale and intensity, with the poorest tourism function and most well-preserved landscape authenticity index of 0.942. Overall, in terms of the spatial morphology, the three villages show the characteristics of “modern town”, “semi-urbanization” and “traditional village” respectively, in corresponding to three land development types: “intensive reconstruction type”, “enclave extension type” and “in situ utilization type”. The spatial evolution patterns of these three villages imply the spatial characteristics of the touristization of traditional villages in different stages, and also have great representative value for the management of rural settlements in tourism areas in China.
China is distinguished by a prominent monsoonal climate in the east of the country, a continental arid climate in the northwest and a highland cold climate on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. Because of the long history of Chinese civilization, there are abundant and well-dated documentary records for climate variation over the whole of the country as well as many natural archives (e.g., tree-rings, ice cores, stalagmites, varved lake sediments and corals) that enable high-resolution paleoclimatic reconstruction. In this paper, we review recent advances in the reconstruction of climate and extreme events over the last 2000 years in China. In the last 10 years, many new reconstructions, based on multi-proxies with wide spatial coverage, have been published in China. These reconstructions enable us to understand the characteristics of climate change across the country as well as the uncertainties of regional reconstructions. Synthesized reconstructed temperature results show that warm intervals over the last 2000 years occurred in AD 1-200, AD 551-760, AD 951-1320, and after AD 1921, and also show that cold intervals were in AD 201-350, AD 441-530, AD 781-950, and AD 1321-1920. Extreme cold winters, seen between 1500 and 1900, were more frequent than those after 1950. The intensity of regional heat waves, in the context of recent global warming, may not in fact exceed natural climate variability seen over the last 2000 years. In the eastern monsoonal region of China, decadal, multi-decadal and centennial oscillations are seen in rainfall variability. While the ensemble mean for drought/flood spatial patterns across all cold periods shows a meridional distribution, there is a tri-pole pattern with respect to droughts south of 25°N, floods between 25° and 30°N, and droughts north of 30°N for all warm periods. Data show that extreme drought events were most frequent in the periods AD 301-400, AD 751-800, AD 1051-1150, AD 1501-1550, and AD 1601-1650, while extreme flood events were frequent in the periods AD 101-150, AD 251-300, AD 951-1000, AD 1701-1750, AD 1801-1850, and AD 1901-1950. Between AD 1551-1600, extreme droughts and flood events occurred frequently. In arid northwest China, climate was characterized by dry conditions in AD 1000-1350, wet conditions in AD 1500-1850, and has tended to be wet over recent decades. On the northeastern Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, centennial-scale oscillations in precipitation have occurred over the last 1000 years, interrupted by several multi- decadal-scale severe drought events. Of these, the most severe were in the 1480s and 1710s. In southwest China, extreme droughts as severe as those seen in Sichuan and Chongqing in 2006 are known to have occurred during historical times.
Modern physical geography in China grew from Chinese traditional geography and has been profoundly influenced by the geographical disciplines of Euro-America and Russia. Since the 1950s, integrated studies of physical geography in China have made remarkable progress in the fields of comprehensive physical geographical regionalization, land studies, landscape ecology, and land surface geographical processes. During the past few decades, under the background of global change and rapid socio-economic transformation, a series of environmental and resources problems have boomed in China. To solve these problems and promote the development of integrated studies of physical geography, the following issues were proposed as research priorities: (1) coupling of land surface patterns and processes; (2) integrated research on regional responses and adaptation to global change; (3) analysis of human dimensions of the earth system; (4) ecosystem service research from a geographical perspective; (5) integration of multi-source data and model development; (6) integrated studies on unique geographical units; and (7) important global issues and relevant international programs.
The Yangtze delta’s response to accelerating river damming and irrigation is a topic of global concern. This research analyzed the general erosion-accretion of the submerged delta front, the spatio-temporal changing pattern in different sub-regions, the geomorphological changes in typical cross-sections, and the geomorphological causes of the four main sub-regions (the eastern tidal wetland of Chongming-CM, the Hengsha shoal-HS, the Jiuduansha wetland-JDS, and the eastern tidal wetland of Nanhui-NH). Data sources include topographic data measured at high-resolution, sediment load at Datong Station, and the corresponding estuary construction information. Major findings are: (1) in general, the study area had slightly eroded (the erosion area ratio was 51.83% and the accretion area ratio was 48.17%) from 1982 to 2010, and it had experienced a shift of “erosion-accretion- erosion”. The spatio-temporal change of geomorphology was also significant in the eight sub-regions, excluding constant erosion in the North Channel; (2) evolution in eastern and northern CM and HS, northern JDS, and the region within the 5 m isobath of NH was dominated by vertical deposition, which was the opposite of that in southern CM and HS, and the region within the 5 m isobath of eastern and southern JDS; (3) on the whole, the encompassed surface areas (ESAs) of the 2 m and 5 m isobaths kept increasing, and the annual growth rates reached 10.42 km2/yr and 7.99 km2/yr respectively during 1982-2010 (however, four sub-regions exhibited disagreements), and in the whole region and all sub-regions, the ESA of the 10 m isobath decreased, while the ESA of the 15 m isobath changed slightly during the period and remained stable; (4) being less influenced by the estuarine engineering, CM was the only sub-region where the ESA of the isobath decreased in accordance with the decline of the sediment load. Major conclusions are that estuarine engineering projects play an increasingly important role in affecting the submerged delta against the macro-background of the reduction of sediment load, the change of ESA and the distribution of isobaths. Along with the accelerating construction of the Shanghai International Shipping Centre and reclamation project, the geomorphological evolution of the submerged delta will become more complex and thus deserves frequent monitoring in the future.
Identifying the problem regions and regional problems, and thus improving regional policies, are crucial for the sustainable development of various economic entities. The coordinated development of industrialization, informatization, urbanization and agricultural modernization (hereinafter referred to as “Sihua”) is not only a practical need but an important strategic direction of integrating urban-rural development and regional development in recent China, and it also provides a significant perspective for identifying problem regions and regional problems so as to improve the regional policies. This study mainly aims to: firstly, establish a comprehensive evaluation index system so as to explore the spatial pattern of coordinated development of Sihua in China at prefecture level; secondly, to develop an evaluation criteria system to identify the problem regions and regional problems from the perspective of coordinated development of Sihua. This paper comes first in the scientific community to evaluate the coordinated development state of Sihua in China at prefecture level and identify the problem regions and regional problems from the perspective of Sihua development by quantitative analysis. This study may benefit the improvement of regional policies and thus contribute to the sustainable socio-economic development of China.
By using the observed monthly mean temperature and humidity datasets of 14 radiosonde stations and monthly mean precipitation data of 83 surface stations from 1979 to 2008 over the Tibetan Plateau (TP), the relationship between the atmospheric water vapor (WV) and precipitation in summer and the precipitation conversion efficiency (PEC) over the TP are analyzed. The results are obtained as follows. (1) The summer WV decreases with increasing altitude, with the largest value area observed in the northeastern part of the TP, and the second largest value area in the southeastern part of the TP, while the northwestern part is the lowest value area. The summer precipitation decreases from southeast to northwest. (2) The summer WV presents two main patterns based on the EOF analysis: the whole region consistent-type and the north-south opposite-type. The north-south opposite-type of the summer WV is similar to the first EOF mode of the summer precipitation and both of their zero lines are located to the north of the Tanggula Mountains. (3) The summer precipitation is more (less) in the southern (northern) TP in the years with the distribution of deficient summer WV in the north while abundant in the south, and vice versa. (4) The PEC over the TP is between 3% and 38% and it has significant spatial difference in summer, which is obviously bigger in the southern TP than that in the northern TP.
China’s reform and opening-up policy has brought the country a great development opportunity. The high-speed growth of the economy not only led China to a period of industrialization, urbanization, informatization and agricultural modernization, but also exacerbated the situation of the urban-rural dual structure. Based on the review of current studies, we first used the analytic hierarchy process (AHP) method to evaluate the urban-rural development and transformation level by population transformation index, land transformation index, industrial transformation index and social transformation index between 1996 and 2012 around the Bohai Rim Region. Then, based on the results of each index, we used the exploratory spatial data analysis (ESDA) method to investigate the spatial autocorrelation of the change in the urban-rural development transformation index during the 16-year period using Global Moran’s I index and Local Moran’s I index. Finally, we investigated the mechanism of change of the urban-rural development transformation index at county level, summarizing five main factors: (1) the radiation from the surrounding big cities, (2) the acceleration of the urbanization process, (3) the upgrading of the industrial structure, (4) the publishing and implementation of a macro development strategy and regional policy, and (5) natural factors such as topology.
Eddy Covariance technique (EC) achieves the direct measurement on ecosystem carbon, nitrogen and water fluxes, and it provides scientific data for accurately assessing ecosystem functions in mitigating global climate change. This paper briefly reviewed the construction and development of Chinese terrestrial ecosystem flux observation and research network (ChinaFLUX), and systematically introduced the design principle and technology of the terrestrial ecosystem carbon, nitrogen and water fluxes coordinated observation system of ChinaFLUX. In addition, this paper summarized the main progress of ChinaFLUX in the ecosystem carbon, nitrogen and water exchange and environmental controlling mechanisms, the spatial pattern of carbon, nitrogen and water fluxes and biogeographical mechanisms, and the regional terrestrial ecosystem carbon budget assessment. Finally, the prospects and emphases of the terrestrial ecosystem carbon, nitrogen and water fluxes coordinated observation of ChinaFLUX are put forward to provide theoretical references for the development of flux observation and research in China.
Since the 1950s, noteworthy farmland abandonment has been occurring in many developed countries and some developing countries. This global land use phenomenon has fundamentally altered extensive rural landscapes. A review of global farmland abandonment under the headings of “land use change - driving mechanisms - impacts and consequences - policy responses” found the following: (1) Farmland abandonment has occurred primarily in developed countries in Europe and North America, but the extent of abandonment has varied significantly. (2) Changing socio-economic factors were the primary driving forces for the farmland abandonment. And land marginalization was the fundamental cause, which was due to the drastic increase of farming opportunity cost, while the direct factor for abandonment was the shrink of agricultural labor forces. (3) Whether to abandon, to what extent and its spatial distributions were finally dependent on integrated effect from the physical conditions, laborer attributes, farming and regional socio-economic conditions at the village, household and parcel scales. With the exception of Eastern Europe, farmland abandonment was more likely to occur in mountainous and hilly areas, due to their unfavorable farming conditions. (4) A study of farmland abandonment should focus on its ecological and environmental effects, while which is more positive or more negative are still in dispute. (5) Increasing agricultural subsidies will be conductive to slowing the rate of farmland abandonment, but this is not the only measure that needs to be implemented.
Due to China’s rapid urbanization, there is a high probability that the rate of abandonment will increase in the near future. However, very little research has focused on this rapid land-use trend in China, and, as a result, there is an inadequate understanding of the dynamic mechanisms and consequences of this phenomenon. This paper concludes by suggesting some future directions for further research in China. These directions include monitoring regional and national abandonment dynamics, analyzing trends, assessing the risks and socio-economic effects of farmland abandonment, and informing policy making.
The Conversion of Land Use and its Effects at Small regional extent (CLUE-S) model is a widely used method to simulate land use change. An ordinary logistic regression model was integrated into the CLUE-S model to identify explanatory variables without considering the spatial autocorrelation effect. Using image-derived maps of the Changsha- Zhuzhou-Xiangtan urban agglomeration, the CLUE-S model was integrated with the ordinary logistic regression and autologistic regression models in this paper to simulate land use change in 2000, 2005 and 2009 based on an observation map from 1995. Significant positive spatial autocorrelation was detected in residuals of ordinary logistic models. Some variables that were much more significant than they should be were selected. Autologistic regression models, which used autocovariate incorporation, were better able to identify driving factors. The Receiver Operating Characteristic Curve (ROC) values of autologistic regression models were larger than 0.8 and the pseudo R2 values were improved, compared with results of logistic regression model. By overlapping the observation maps, the Kappa values of the ordinary logistic regression model (OL)-CLUE-S and autologistic regression model (AL)-CLUE-S models were larger than 0.75. The results showed that the simulation results were indeed accurate. The Kappa fuzzy (Kfuzzy) values of the AL-CLUE-S models (0.780, 0.773, 0.606) were larger than the values of the OL-CLUE-S models (0.759, 0.760, 0.599) during the three periods. The AL-CLUE-S models performed better than the OL-CLUE-S models in the simulation of land use change. The results showed that it is reasonable to integrate autocovariates into CLUE-S models. However, the Kfuzzy values decreased with prolonged duration of simulation and the maximum range of time was not discussed in this paper.
The objective of this study is to quantitatively evaluate Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) data with rain gauge data and further to use this TRMM data to drive a Distributed Time-Variant Gain Model (DTVGM) to perform hydrological simulations in the semi-humid Weihe River catchment in China. Before the simulations, a comparison with a 10-year (2001-2010) daily rain gauge data set reveals that, at daily time step, TRMM rainfall data are better at capturing rain occurrence and mean values than rainfall extremes. On a monthly time scale, good linear relationships between TRMM and rain gauge rainfall data are found, with determination coefficients R2 varying between 0.78 and 0.89 for the individual stations. Subsequent simulation results of seven years (2001-2007) of data on daily hydrological processes confirm that the DTVGM when calibrated by rain gauge data performs better than when calibrated by TRMM data, but the performance of the simulation driven by TRMM data is better than that driven by gauge data on a monthly time scale. The results thus suggest that TRMM rainfall data are more suitable for monthly streamflow simulation in the study area, and that, when the effects of recalibration and the results for water balance components are also taken into account, the TRMM 3B42-V7 product has the potential to perform well in similar basins.
Based on multiple remote-sensing image interpretation and classification, and economic and social data, this study focused on rural settlement and land use change amidst rapid urbanization. Rural settlements, spatial and temporal patterns of land use and influencing factors in the Bohai Rim were explored within 5×5 km grid cells, as per GIS spatial analysis and geostatistical analysis. Results show that the spatial distribution of rural settlements in the Bohai Rim is remarkably varied. The number of rural settlement sites in a 5×5 km grid cell exceeding 5.0 are distributed in a six-area pattern in the Bohai Rim; rural settlement dispersion is particularly high in agricultural regions in south Hebei and southwest Shandong, suggesting rural settlement density keeps increasing from northeast to southwest, characterized by high density and dispersed spatial distribution in traditional agricultural regions. Furthermore, rural settlements show dramatic spatial differences in terms of distribution and dynamic change degrees in the Bohai Rim. In terms of spatial distribution, rural residential land is always extensive in plains, with a high density of rural settlements, on the North China Plain in particular, and rural residential land in the south of Shandong province is also extensive, with most rural settlement land use areas in the 5×5 km grid cells exceeding 3 km2. However, traditional agricultural regions have underdeveloped economies, industrialization and tertiary industries, characterized by low urbanization rates, with farmers not feeling assimilated in rural or urban areas. In terms of the temporal sequence, urban expansion rapidly promotes the transformation of rural residential lands in rural-urban transitional belts of provincial capital or prefecture-level city into urban lands, and in traditional rural areas, residential lands are growing. The natural environment, transportation conditions, economic development and farmers’ incomes all have effects on type of land use change and pattern of rural settlements. It is a core objective for future rural development to reconstruct a rational spatial pattern of villages or towns and well-organized village-town systems, build central villages, key towns or central towns, optimize or reconstruct production, living and eco-space of rural areas. It is of significance for rural geographical research to further interpret and explore spatial reconstruction theory.