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1. chinaXiv:202201.00021 [pdf]

Land use/land cover change responses to ecological water conveyance in the lower reaches of Tarim River, China

WANG Shanshan; ZHOU Kefa; ZUO Qiting; WANG Jinlin; WANG Wei
Subjects: Geosciences >> Geography

The Tarim River is the longest inland river in China and is considered as an important river to protect the oasis economy and environment of the Tarim Basin. However, excessive exploitation and over-utilization of natural resources, particularly water resources, have triggered a series of ecological and environmental problems, such as the reduction in the volume of water in the main river, deterioration of water quality, drying up of downstream rivers, degradation of vegetation, and land desertification. In this study, the land use/land cover change (LUCC) responses to ecological water conveyance in the lower reaches of the Tarim River were investigated using ENVI (Environment for Visualizing Images) and GIS (Geographic Information System) data analysis software for the period of 1990–2018. Multi-temporal remote sensing images and ecological water conveyance data from 1990 to 2018 were used. The results indicate that LUCC covered an area of 2644.34 km2 during this period, accounting for 15.79% of the total study area. From 1990 to 2018, wetland, farmland, forestland, and artificial surfaces increased by 533.42 km2 (216.77%), 446.68 km2 (123.66%), 284.55 km2 (5.67%), and 57.51 km2 (217.96%), respectively, whereas areas covered by grassland and other land use/land cover types, such as Gobi, bare soil, and deserts, decreased by 103.34 km2 (14.31%) and 1218.83 km2 (11.75%), respectively. Vegetation area decreased first and then increased, with the order of 2010<2000<1990<2018. LUCC in the overflow and stagnant areas in the lower reaches of the Tarim River was mainly characterized by fragmentation, irregularity, and complexity. By analyzing the LUCC responses to 19 rounds of ecological water conveyance in the lower reaches of the Tarim River from 2000 to the end of 2018, we proposed guidelines for the rational development and utilization of water and soil resources and formulation of strategies for the sustainable development of the lower reaches of the Tarim River. This study provides scientific guidance for optimal scheduling of water resources in the region.

submitted time 2021-12-30 Cooperative journals:《Journal of Arid Land》 Hits6580Downloads319 Comment 0

2. chinaXiv:202112.00016 [pdf]

Temporal and spatial variations of net primary productivity and its response to groundwater of a typical oasis in the Tarim Basin, China

SUN Lingxiao; YU Yang; GAO Yuting; ZHANG Haiyan; YU Xiang; HE Jing; WANG Dagang; Ireneusz MALIK; Malgorzata WISTUBA; YU Ruide
Subjects: Geosciences >> Geography

Net primary productivity (NPP) of the vegetation in an oasis can reflect the productivity capacity of a plant community under natural environmental conditions. Owing to the extreme arid climate conditions and scarce precipitation in the arid oasis regions, groundwater plays a key role in restricting the development of the vegetation. The Qira Oasis is located on the southern margin of the Taklimakan Desert (Tarim Basin, China) that is one of the most vulnerable regions regarding vegetation growth and water scarcity in the world. Based on remote sensing images of the Qira Oasis and daily meteorological data measured by the ground stations during the period 2006–2019, this study analyzed the temporal and spatial patterns of NPP in the oasis as well as its relation with the variation of groundwater depth using a modified Carnegie Ames Stanford Approach (CASA) model. At the spatial scale, NPP of the vegetation decreased from the interior of the Qira Oasis to the margin; at the temporal scale, NPP of the vegetation in the oasis fluctuated significantly (ranging from 29.80 to 50.07 g C/(m2?month)) but generally showed an increasing trend, with the average increase rate of 0.07 g C/(m2?month). The regions with decreasing NPP occupied 64% of the total area of the oasis. During the study period, NPP of both farmland and grassland showed an increasing trend, while that of forest showed a decreasing trend. The depth of groundwater was deep in the south of the oasis and shallow in the north, showing a gradual increasing trend from south to north. Groundwater, as one of the key factors in the surface change and evolution of the arid oasis, determines the succession direction of the vegetation in the Qira Oasis. With the increase of groundwater depth, grassland coverage and vegetation NPP decreased. During the period 2008–2015, with the recovery of groundwater level, NPP values of all types of vegetation with different coverages increased. This study will provide a scientific basis for the rational utilization and sustainable management of groundwater resources in the oasis.

submitted time 2021-12-03 Cooperative journals:《Journal of Arid Land》 Hits2436Downloads267 Comment 0

3. chinaXiv:202111.00044 [pdf]

Response of ecosystem service value to land use/cover change in the northern slope economic belt of the Tianshan Mountains, Xinjiang, China

SUN Chen; MA Yonggang; GONG Lu
Subjects: Geosciences >> Geography

Land use/cover change (LUCC) is becoming more and more frequent and extensive as a result of human activities, and is expected to have a major impact on human welfare by altering ecosystem service value (ESV). In this study, we utilized remote sensing images and statistical data to explore the spatial-temporal changes of land use/cover types and ESV in the northern slope economic belt of the Tianshan Mountains in Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, China from 1975 to 2018. During the study period, LUCC in the study region varied significantly. Except grassland and unused land, all the other land use/cover types (cultivated land, forestland, waterbody, and construction land) increased in areas. From 1975 to 2018, the spatial-temporal variations in ESV were also pronounced. The total ESV decreased by 4.00×108 CNY, which was primarily due to the reductions in the areas of grassland and unused land. Waterbody had a much higher ESV than the other land use/cover types. Ultimately, understanding the impact of LUCC on ESV and the interactions among ESV of different land use/cover types will help improve existing land use policies and provide scientific basis for developing new conservation strategies for ecologically fragile areas.

submitted time 2021-11-11 Cooperative journals:《Journal of Arid Land》 Hits2338Downloads204 Comment 0

4. chinaXiv:202110.00024 [pdf]

Spatiotemporal changes in water, land use, and ecosystem services in Central Asia considering climate changes and human activities

YU Yang; CHEN Xi; Ireneusz MALIK; Malgorzata WISTUBA; CAO Yiguo; HOU Dongde; TA Zhijie; HE Jing; ZHANG Lingyun; YU Ruide; ZHANG Haiyan; SUN Lingxiao
Subjects: Geosciences >> Geography

Central Asia is located in the hinterland of Eurasia, comprising Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, and Tajikistan; over 93.00% of the total area is dryland. Temperature rise and human activities have severe impacts on the fragile ecosystems. Since the 1970s, nearly half the great lakes in Central Asia have shrunk and rivers are drying rapidly owing to climate changes and human activities. Water shortage and ecological crisis have attracted extensive international attention. In general, ecosystem services in Central Asia are declining, particularly with respect to biodiversity, water, and soil conservation. Furthermore, the annual average temperature and annual precipitation in Central Asia increased by 0.30°C/decade and 6.9 mm/decade in recent decades, respectively. Temperature rise significantly affected glacier retreat in the Tianshan Mountains and Pamir Mountains, which may intensify water shortage in the 21st century. The increase in precipitation cannot counterbalance the aggravation of water shortage caused by the temperature rise and human activities in Central Asia. The population of Central Asia is growing gradually, and its economy is increasing steadily. Moreover, the agricultural land has not been expended in the last two decades. Thus, water and ecological crises, such as the Aral Sea shrinkage in the 21st century, cannot be attributed to agriculture extension any longer. Unbalanced regional development and water interception/transfer have led to the irrational exploitation of water resources in some watersheds, inducing downstream water shortage and ecological degradation. In addition, accelerated industrialization and urbanization have intensified this process. Therefore, all Central Asian countries must urgently reach a consensus and adopt common measures for water and ecological protection.

submitted time 2021-10-11 Cooperative journals:《Journal of Arid Land》 Hits3804Downloads438 Comment 0

5. chinaXiv:202105.00007 [pdf]

Water, land, and energy use efficiencies and financial evaluation of air conditioner cooled greenhouses based on field experiments

Subjects: Geosciences >> Geography

High temperature and humidity can be controlled in greenhouses by using mechanical refrigeration cooling system such as air conditioner (AC) in warm and humid regions. This study aims to evaluate the techno-financial aspects of the AC-cooled greenhouse as compared to the evaporative cooled (EV-cooled) greenhouse in winter and summer seasons. Two quonset single-span prototype greenhouses were built in the Agriculture Experiment Station of Sultan Qaboos University, Oman, with dimensions of 6.0 m long and 3.0 m wide. The AC-cooled greenhouse was covered by a rockwool insulated polyethylene plastic sheet and light emitting diodes (LED) lights were used as a source of light, while the EV-cooled greenhouse was covered by a transparent polyethylene sheet and sunlight was used as light source. Three cultivars of high-value lettuce were grown for experimentation. To evaluate the technical efficiency of greenhouse performance, we conducted measures on land use efficiency (LUE), water use efficiency (WUE), gross water use efficiency (GWUE) and energy use efficiency (EUE). Financial analysis was conducted to compare the profitability of both greenhouses. The results showed that the LUE in winter were 10.10 and 14.50 kg/m2 for the AC- and EV-cooled greenhouses, respectively. However, the values reduced near to 6.80 kg/m2 in both greenhouses in summer. The WUE of the AC-cooled greenhouse was higher than that of the EV-cooled greenhouse by 3.8% in winter and 26.8% in summer. The GWUE was used to measure the total yield to the total greenhouse water consumption including irrigation and cooling water; it was higher in the AC-cooled greenhouse than in the EV-cooled greenhouse in both summer and winter seasons by almost 98.0%–99.4%. The EUE in the EV-cooled greenhouse was higher in both seasons. Financial analysis showed that in winter, gross return, net return and benefit-to-cost ratio were better in the EV-cooled greenhouse, while in summer, those were higher in the AC-cooled greenhouse. The values of internal rate of return in the AC- and EV-cooled greenhouses were 63.4% and 129.3%, respectively. In both greenhouses, lettuce investment was highly sensitive to changes in price, yield and energy cost. The financial performance of the AC-cooled greenhouse in summer was better than that of the EV-cooled greenhouse and the pattern was opposite in winter. Finally, more studies on the optimum LED light intensity for any particular crop have to be conducted over different growing seasons in order to enhance the yield quantity and quality of crop.

submitted time 2021-04-30 Cooperative journals:《Journal of Arid Land》 Hits2051Downloads477 Comment 0

6. chinaXiv:202101.00074 [pdf]

Long-term variations in runoff of the Syr Darya River Basin under climate change and human activities

Subjects: Geosciences >> Geography

In this study, we analyzed the hydrological and meteorological data from the Syr Darya River Basin during the period of 1930–2015 to investigate variations in river runoff and the impacts of climate change and human activities on river runoff. The Syr Darya River, which is supplied by snow and glacier meltwater upstream, is an important freshwater source for Central Asia, as nearly half of the population is concentrated in this area. River runoff in this arid region is sensitive to climate change and human activities. Therefore, estimation of the climatic and hydrological changes and the quantification of the impacts of climate change and human activities on river runoff are of great concern and important for regional water resources management. The long-term trends of hydrological time series from the selected 11 hydrological stations in the Syr Darya River Basin were examined by non-parametric methods, including the Pettitt change point test and Mann-Kendall trend tests. It was found that 8 out of 11 hydrological stations showed significant downward trends in river runoff. Change of river runoff variations occurred in the year around 1960. Moreover, during the study period (1930–2015), annual mean temperature, annual precipitation, and annual potential evapotranspiration in the river basin increased substantially. We employed hydrological sensitivity method to evaluate the impacts of climate change and human activities on river runoff based on precipitation and potential evapotranspiration. It was estimated that human activities accounted for over 82.6%–98.7% of the reduction in river runoff, mainly owing to water withdrawal for irrigation purpose. The observed variations in river runoff can subsequently lead to adverse ecological consequences from an ecological and regional water resources management perspective.

submitted time 2021-01-22 Cooperative journals:《Journal of Arid Land》 Hits1273Downloads730 Comment 0

7. chinaXiv:202011.00138 [pdf]

Changes in rainfall partitioning caused by the replacement of native dry forests of Lithraea molleoides by exotic plantations of Pinus elliottii in the dry Chaco mountain forests, central Argentina

Subjects: Geosciences >> Geography

The replacement of native dry forests by commercial (exotic) tree plantations could generate changes in rainfall partitioning, which further affects the water cycle. In this study, we determined (i) the rainfall partitioning into interception, throughfall and stemflow, (ii) the role of rainfall event size on rainfall partitioning, (iii) the pH of water channelized as throughfall and stemflow, and (iv) the runoff in Lithraea molleoides (a native species) and Pinus elliottii (an exotic species) stands in the dry Chaco mountain forests, central Argentina. On average, interception, throughfall and stemflow accounted for 19.3%, 79.5% and 1.2% of the gross rainfall in L. molleoides stand, and 32.6%, 66.7% and 0.7% of the gross rainfall in P. elliottii stand, respectively. Amounts of interception, throughfall and stemflow presented positive linear relationships with the increment of rainfall event size for both tree species (P<0.01 in all cases). Percentages of interception, throughfall and stemflow were all related to the increment of rainfall event size, showing different patterns. With increasing rainfall event size, interception exponentially decreased, throughfall asymptotically increased and stemflow linearly increased. Both P. elliottii and L. molleoides stands presented significant differences in the pH values of water channelized as throughfall (6.3 vs. 6.7, respectively; P<0.01) and stemflow (4.5 vs. 5.8, respectively; P<0.01). Runoff occupied only 0.3% of the gross rainfall in P. elliottii stand and was zero in L. molleoides stand. Our results showed that the native species L. molleoides presented 13.6% more water reaching the topsoil (i.e., net rainfall; net rainfall=gross rainfall–interception–runoff) than the exotic species P. elliottii. This study improves our understanding of the effects of native vegetation replacement on the local water balance in the dry forest ecosystems.

submitted time 2020-11-25 Cooperative journals:《Journal of Arid Land》 Hits740Downloads389 Comment 0

8. chinaXiv:201906.00048 [pdf]

Effects of land use and cover change on surface wind speed in China

LI Yupeng
Subjects: Geosciences >> Geography

The surface wind speed (SWS) is affected by both large-scale circulation and land use and cover change (LUCC). In China, most studies have considered the effect of large-scale circulation rather than LUCC on SWS. In this study, we evaluated the effects of LUCC on the SWS decrease during 1979–2015 over China using the observation minus reanalysis (OMR) method. There were two key findings: (1) Observed wind speed declined significantly at a rate of 0.0112 m/(s?a), whereas ERA-Interim, which can only capture the inter-annual variation of observed data, indicated a gentle downward trend. The effects of LUCC on SWS were distinct and caused a decrease of 0.0124 m/(s?a) in SWS; (2) Due to variations in the characteristics of land use types across different regions, the influence of LUCC on SWS also varied. The observed wind speed showed a rapid decline over cultivated land in Northwest China, as well as a decrease in China's northeastern and eastern plain regions due to the urbanization. However, in the Tibetan Plateau, the impact of LUCC on wind speed was only slight and can thus be ignored.

submitted time 2019-06-20 Cooperative journals:《Journal of Arid Land》 Hits8759Downloads1602 Comment 0

9. chinaXiv:201901.00114 [pdf]

Climate change, water resources and sustainable development in the arid and semi-arid lands of Central Asia in the past 30 years

YU Yang; PI Yuanyue; YU Xiang
Subjects: Geosciences >> Geography

The countries of Central Asia are collectively known as the five ''-stans'': Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan and Kazakhstan. In recent times, the Central Asian region has been affected by the shrinkage of the Aral Sea, widespread desertification, soil salinization, biodiversity loss, frequent sand storms, and many other ecological disasters. This paper is a review article based upon the collection, identification and collation of previous studies of environmental changes and regional developments in Central Asia in the past 30 years. Most recent studies have reached a consensus that the temperature rise in Central Asia is occurring faster than the global average. This warming trend will not only result in a higher evaporation in the basin oases, but also to a significant retreat of glaciers in the mountainous areas. Water is the key to sustainable development in the arid and semi-arid regions in Central Asia. The uneven distribution, over consumption, and pollution of water resources in Central Asia have caused severe water supply problems, which have been affecting regional harmony and development for the past 30 years. The widespread and significant land use changes in the 1990s could be used to improve our understanding of natural variability and human interaction in the region. There has been a positive trend of trans-border cooperation among the Central Asian countries in recent years. International attention has grown and research projects have been initiated to provide water and ecosystem protection in Central Asia. However, the agreements that have been reached might not be able to deliver practical action in time to prevent severe ecological disasters. Water management should be based on hydrographic borders and ministries should be able to make timely decisions without political intervention. Fully integrated management of water resources, land use and industrial development is essential in Central Asia. The ecological crisis should provide sufficient motivation to reach a consensus on unified water management throughout the region.

submitted time 2019-01-17 Cooperative journals:《Journal of Arid Land》 Hits5126Downloads1426 Comment 0

10. chinaXiv:201809.00171 [pdf]

Changes in soil properties and erodibility of gully heads induced by vegetation restoration on the Loess Plateau, China

GUO, Mingming; WANG, Wenlong; KANG, Hongliang; YANG, Bo
Subjects: Geosciences >> History of Geosciences

Soil erosion on the Loess Plateau of China is effectively controlled due to the implementation of several ecological restoration projects that improve soil properties and reduce soil erodibility. However, few studies have examined the effects of vegetation restoration on soil properties and erodibility of gully head in the gully regions of the Loess Plateau. The objectives of this study were to quantify the effects of vegetation restoration on soil properties and erodibility in this region. Specifically, a control site in a slope cropland and 9 sites in 3 restored land-use types (5 sites in grassland, 3 in woodland and 1 in shrubland) in the Nanxiaohegou watershed of a typical gully region on the Loess Plateau were selected, and soil and root samples were collected to assess soil properties and root characteristics. Soil erodibility factor was calculated by the Erosion Productivity Impact Calculator method. Our results revealed that vegetation restoration increased soil sand content, soil saturated hydraulic conductivity, organic matter content and mean weight diameter of water-stable aggregate but decreased soil silt and clay contents and soil disintegration rate. A significant difference in soil erodibility was observed among different vegetation restoration patterns or land-use types. Compared with cropland, soil erodibility decreased in the restored lands by 3.99% to 21.43%. The restoration patterns of Cleistogenes caespitosa K. and Artemisia sacrorum L. in the grassland showed the lowest soil erodibility and can be considered as the optimal vegetation restoration pattern for improving soil anti-erodibility of the gully heads. Additionally, the negative linear change in soil erodibility for grassland with restoration time was faster than those of woodland and shrubland. Soil erodibility was significantly correlated with soil particle size distribution, soil disintegration rate, soil saturated hydraulic conductivity, water-stable aggregate stability, organic matter content and root characteristics (including root average diameter, root length density, root surface density and root biomass density), but it showed no association with soil bulk density and soil total porosity. These findings indicate that although vegetation destruction is a short-term process, returning the soil erodibility of cropland to the level of grassland, woodland and shrubland is a long-term process (8–50 years).

submitted time 2018-09-18 Cooperative journals:《Journal of Arid Land》 Hits3892Downloads1336 Comment 0

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