Table of Content

    25 December 2008, Volume 18 Issue 4 Previous Issue    Next Issue
    Climate and Environmental Change
    A quantitative comparison and analysis on the assessment indicators of greenhouse gases emission
    ZHANG Zhiqiang, QU Jiansheng, ZENG Jingjing
    2008, 18 (4):  387-399.  doi: 10.1007/s11442-008-0387-8
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    Anthropogenic greenhouse gases (GHG) emission and related global warming issues have been the focus of international communities for some time. The international communities have reached a consensus to reduce anthropogenic GHG emissions and restrain global warming. The quantitative assessment of anthropogenic GHG emissions is the scientific basis to find out the status of global GHG emission, identify the commitments of each country, and arrange the international efforts of GHG emission reduction. Currently the main assessment indicators for GHG emission include national indicator, per capita indicator, per GDP indicator, and international trade indicator etc. The introduction to the above indicators is put forward and their merits and demerits are analyzed. Based on the GHG emission data from the World Resource Institute (WRI), the US Energy Information Administration (EIA), and the Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center (CDIAC), the results of each indictor are calculated for the world, for the eight G8 industrialized countries (USA, UK, Canada, Japan, Germany, France, Italy and Russia), and the five major developing countries including China, Brazil, India, South Africa and Mexico. The paper points out that all these indicators have some limitations. The Indicator of Industrialized Accumulative Emission per Capita (IAEC) is put forward as the equitable indicator to evaluate the industrialized historical accumulative emission per capita of every country. IAEC indicator can reflect the economic achievement of GHG emission enjoyed by the current generations in every country and their commitments. The analysis of IAEC indicates that the historical accumulative emission per capita in industrialized countries such as UK and USA were typically higher than those of the world average and the developing countries. Emission indicator per capita per GDP, consumptive emission indicator and survival emission indicator are also put forward and discussed in the paper.

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    Vegetation patterns and species–environment relationships in the Gurbantunggut Desert of China
    QIAN Yibing, WU Zhaoning, ZHAO Ruifeng, ZHANG Liyun
    2008, 18 (4):  400-414.  doi: 10.1007/s11442-008-0400-2
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    The Gurbantunggut Desert is the largest stable and semi-stable sand desert in China, yet few data exist on vegetation pattern and species-environment relationships for these diverse desert landscapes. The sand dunes of the survey area are mainly of the longitudinal form from north to south, but checkerboard-shaped and honeycomb-shaped forms are also present, with the height of 10–50 m. We measured vegetation and soil data on north–south transects and compared them with vegetation and soil data on east–west transects. Analysis revealed that the varying trend and strength of the species diversity, dominance and cover of the plant communities in the longitudinal and transverse directions across the landscape are significantly different. The results of CCA ordination show that the microhabitats of soil organic matter (OM), soil salts (TS), sorting index (σ), topsoil water-content (SM) and pH relate to the differences in vegetation observed as differences in species assemblage from salt-intolerant ephemerals, micro-subshrubs and subshrubs to salt-tolerant shrubs and micro-arbors. The terrain (alt.) and soil texture (the contents of Mz and φ1) affect the spatial differentiation of many species. However, this spatial differentiation is not so marked on transects running longitudinally with the landscape, in the same direction as the dunes. The species of the desert vegetation have formed three assemblages under the action of habitat gradients, relating to three sections running transversely across the landscape, at right angles to the direction of the dune crests. In the mid-east section of the study area the topography is higher, with sand-lands or dune-slopes with coarse particles. Here the dominant vegetation comprises shrubs and subshrubs of Seriphidium santolium and Ephedra distachya, with large numbers of ephemeral and ephemeroid plants of Senecio subdentatus, and Carex physodes in spring and summer. On the soil of the dune-slopes in the mid-west of the study area, with coarse particles and abundant TK, the plant assemblage of Haloxylon persicum, Soranthus meyeri and Agriophyllum squarrosum is developed. The species composition in the east marginal belt of the study area has similar characteristics to the mid-west section. There is no corresponding section in the north–south transects (except for the north and south margins). This is because the habitats of most plants are located in the middle of the microhabitat gradients in the north–south direction in the desert.

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    Dust storms evolution in Taklimakan Desert and its correlation with climatic parameters
    XIAO Fengjin, ZHOU Caiping, LIAO Yaoming
    2008, 18 (4):  415-424.  doi: 10.1007/s11442-008-0415-8
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    Based on the sand dust storms data and climatic data in 12 meteorological stations around sand dust storm originating areas of the Taklimakan Desert, we analyzed the trends of the number of dust storm days from 1960 to 2005 as well as their correlations with temperature, precipitation, wind speed and the number of days with mean wind speed ≥ 5 m/s. The results show that the frequency of dust storm events in the Taklimakan region decreased with the elapse of time. Except Ruoqiang and Minfeng, in the other 10 meteorological stations, the frequency of dust storm events reduces, and in 4 meteorological stations of Kuqa, Korla, Kalpin and Hotan, the frequency of dust storm events distinctly decreases. The temperature has an increasing trend, while the average wind speed and the number of days with mean wind speed ≥ 5 m/s have decreasing trends. The correlation analysis between the number of days of dust storms and climatic parameters demonstrates that wind speed and the number of days with mean wind speed ≥ 5 m/s have strong positive correlation with the number of days of dust storms, with the correlations coefficients being 0.743 and 0.720 (p<0.01), respectively, which indicates that strong wind is the direct factor resulting in sand dust storms. Whereas precipitation has significant negative correlation with the number of days of dust storms (p<0.01), and the prior annual precipitation has also negative correlation, which indicates that the prior precipitation restrains the occurrence of sand dust storms, but this restraining action is weaker than the same year’s precipitation. Temperature has negative correlation with the number of dust storm days, with a correlations coefficient of –0.433 (p<0.01), which means that temperature change also has impacts on the occurrence of dust storm events in the Taklimakan region.

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    Chronology of the Holocene loess-paleosol section and its deposition and pedogenesis on the south of Chinese Loess Plateau
    JIA Yaofeng, HUANG Chunchang, PANG Jiangli, NIU Junjie
    2008, 18 (4):  425-442.  doi: 10.1007/s11442-008-0425-6
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    Optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dating for polymineral fine-grained loess samples, collected in Laoguantai (LGT) section on the south of the Chinese Loess Plateau, was made by application of single-aliquot regenerative-dose (SAR) protocol. A ‘Double-SAR’ procedure in which aliquots are subjected to both infrared (IR) and blue stimulations was used, and two sets of equivalent dose (De) determinations were produced and assumed to relate predominantly to feldspathic and quartz fine grain populations respectively. The OSL ages estimated from IRSL signals are smaller than those estimated from [post-IR] OSL signals due to the anomalous fading of feldspar IR signals, based on fading experiment. The young ages of the samples near ground surface may be originated from the post-depositional disturbance by the intensifying humanity’s cultivation since 3.0 ka BP in the Guanzhong Basin, south of the Chinese Loess Plateau. Based on OSL dating, as well as field observations and stratigraphic correlation, we determine the chronology of the LGT loess-paleosol sequence. In combination with climate proxy records, it is indicated that aeolian loess deposition and pedogenesis underwent polyphase changes during the Holocene, likely to have been driven by shifts in the East Asian monsoon. This suggests that aeolian loess deposition is episodic and highly variable, with contributions from non-aeolian processes such as alluvial deposition found in the area.

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    Feasibility study on the binary-parameter retrieval model of ocean suspended sediment concentration based on MODIS data
    LI Guosheng, WANG Fang, LIAO Heping
    2008, 18 (4):  443-454.  doi: 10.1007/s11442-008-0443-4
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    This paper brought out a new idea on the retrieval of suspended sediment concentration, which uses both the water-leaving radiance from remote sensing data and the grain size of the suspended sediment. A principal component model and a neural network model based on those two parameters were constructed. The analyzing results indicate that testing errors of the models using the two parameters are 0.256 and 0.244, while the errors using only water-leaving radiance are 0.384 and 0.390. The stability of the models with grain size parameter is also better than the one without grain size. This research proved that it is necessary to introduce the grain size parameter into suspended sediment concentration retrieval models in order to improve the retrieval precision of these models.

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    Land use change of Kitakyushu based on landscape ecology and Markov model
    GUAN Dongjie, GAO Weijun, WATARI Kazuyuki, FUKAHORI Hidetoshi
    2008, 18 (4):  455-468.  doi: 10.1007/s11442-008-0455-0
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    Based on four phases of TM images acquired in 1990, 1995, 2000 and 2005, this paper took Kitakyushu in Japan as a case study to analyze spatial change of land use landscape and corresponding effects on environmental issues guided by landscape ecology theory in virtue of combining technology of Remote Sensing with GIS. Firstly, land use types were divided into 6 classes (farmland, mountain, forestland, water body, urban land and unused land) according to national classification standard of land use, comprehensible ability of TM image and purpose of this study. Secondly, following the theory of landscape ecology analysis, 11 typical landscape indices were abstracted to evaluate the environmental effects and spatial feature changes of land use. Research results indicated that land use has grown more and more diversified and unbalanced, human activities have disturbed the landscape more seriously. Finally, transfer matrix of Markov was applied to forecast change process of land use in the future different periods, and then potential land use changes were also simulated from 2010 to 2050. Results showed that conversion tendency for all types of land use in Kitakyushu into urban construction land were enhanced. The study was anticipated to help local authorities better understand and address a complex land use system, and develop improved land use management strategies that could better balance urban expansion and ecological conservation.

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    The impact of land use change on quality evolution of soil genetic layers on the coastal plain of south Hangzhou Bay
    LI Jialin, LI Weifang, YANG Xiaoping, ZHANG Dianfa, TONG Yiqing
    2008, 18 (4):  469-482.  doi: 10.1007/s11442-008-0469-7
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    Land use change plays an important part in the studies of global environmental change and regional sustainable development. The change of soil quality can particularly reflect the impacts of human socio-economic activities on environment. Taking the coastal plain of south Hangzhou Bay as a study case, we analyzed the effects of land use changes on organic matter (OM), total nitrogen (TN), total phosphorus (TP), available phosphorus (AP), available potassium (AK), total salinity (TS), pH value in soil genetic layers, and assessed soil quality change related to different land use types from 1982 to 2003. The results show that: (1) The general change tendency of soil quality in the coastal plain of south Hangzhou Bay declined obviously in A layer and slightly rise in B (or P) layer and C (or W) layer. The contents of TP decreased generally in all soil genetic layers, but the variety difference of other soil quality indices was relatively great. (2) The change of soil quality in the areas where land use changed is far more remarkable than that with land use unchanged. The value of quality variety is A layer >B (or P) layer >C (or W) layer. (3) The changes of soil tillage, cultivation, fertilization, irrigation and drainage activities related to land use may make some soil-forming processes disappeared and bring in other new processes which will affect the soil quality and soil genetic layers directly.

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    Soil properties related to land-use systems in oases of Sangong river watershed, Xinjiang
    LUO Geping, CHEN Xi, XU Wenqiang
    2008, 18 (4):  483-498.  doi: 10.1007/s11442-008-0483-9
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    Understanding the effect of human activities on the soil environment is fundamental to understanding global change and sustainable development. In the process of transformation of tropical rain forests and semiarid grasslands to farmlands, land degradation usually occurs. But the transformation of arid desert landscape to oasis is found to have quite different consequences. Taking an alluvial plain oasis in the north piedmont of the Tianshan Mountains as a case study, we investigate oasis soil properties related to different land-use systems during the transformation of arid desert to oases. Selected land-use systems consisted of an annual crop field less than 3 years old, annual crop field 3?6 years old, annual crop field more than 6 years old, perennial crop field less than 4 years old, perennial crop field of 4-6 years old, perennial crop field more than 6 years old, abandoned farmland more than 3 years old, woodland field more than 6 years old, ecological forestation field, natural shrubbery field, desert grass land, and saline or alkaline field. Different land-use systems affect significantly the distribution of sand, silt and clay. Sand content in oasis soil tends to decrease with cultivation years but silt and clay contents tend to be increased in the oasis soils. Soil fertility is higher in the land-use systems under strong human disturbance than under weak human disturbance. Oasis soil nutrients also tend to increase with cultivation years. Soils have a significantly lower salinity in the land-use systems under strong human disturbance than under weak human disturbance. Soil organic matter and nutrients of the annual and perennial crop systems in the oasis tend to increase with cultivation time with the oasis soil acting as a carbon sink. These results show that soils are not degraded and the soil quality is gradually improved under rational land use and scientific management patterns, including uniform exploitation of land resources, effective irrigation systems, sound drainage systems, balanced fertilizer application, crushed straw return to soil and transformation of annual crop fields to perennial ones.

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    Livelihood diversification and cropland use pattern in agro-pastoral mountainous region of eastern Tibetan Plateau
    ZHANG Liping, ZHANG Yili, YAN Jianzhong, WU Yingying
    2008, 18 (4):  499-509.  doi: 10.1007/s11442-008-0499-1
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    This study examined livelihood diversification and cropland use pattern in Keerma village, located in Jinchuan County, eastern Tibetan Plateau. Through stratified random sampling survey, participatory rural appraisal, investigation of households’ plots and statistical methods, 63 households and 272 cropland plots were systemically investigated and sampled. The results show: (1) Different types of household have variety livelihood strategies, portfolio and income. Livelihood diversification and introducing and expanding off-farm activities can be the future trend, whereas, adverse natural environment, socio-economic conditions and peasants’ capabilities together affect sustainable livelihood and land use. (2) Each livelihood strategy has its own impact on land use, mainly affecting land use type and land use intensification level. (3) Diversification into off-farm activities could be the key of building sustainable livelihood and the essential approach of realizing sustainable land use in the region.

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