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    Variations in the Drought Severity Index in Response to Climate Change on the Tibetan Plateau
    WANG Xiangtao, ZHANG Xianzhou, WANG Junhao, NIU Ben
    Journal of Resources and Ecology    2020, 11 (3): 304-314.   DOI: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764X.2020.03.008
    Abstract613)   HTML11)    PDF (1520KB)(124)      

    Quantifying the relationship between the drought severity index and climate factors is crucial for predicting drought risk in situations characterized by climate change. However, variations in drought risk are not readily discernible under conditions of climate change, and this is particularly the case on the Tibetan Plateau. This study examines the correlations between the annual drought severity index (DSI) and 14 climate factors (including temperature, precipitation, humidity, wind speed, and hours of sunshine factors), on the Tibetan Plateau from 2000 to 2011. Spatial average DSI increased with precipitation and minimum relative humidity, while it decreased as the hours of sunshine increased. The correlation between DSI and climate factors varied with vegetation types. In alpine meadows, the correlation of the spatial DSI average with the percentage of sunshine and hours of sunshine (P<0.001) was higher compared to that in alpine steppes (P<0.05). Similarly, average vapor pressure and minimum relative humidity had significant positive effects on spatial DSI in alpine meadows, but had insignificant effects in alpine steppes. The magnitude of DSI change correlated negatively with temperature, precipitation, and vapor pressure, and positively with wind speed and sunshine. This demonstrates that the correlation between drought and climate change on the Tibetan Plateau is dependent on the type of ecosystem.

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    Response of Plant Community Carbon and Nitrogen Stoichiometry to Experimental Warming on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau
    ZHANG Haorui, QIN Jiwei, FU Gang
    Journal of Resources and Ecology    2020, 11 (3): 315-321.   DOI: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764X.2020.03.009
    Abstract166)   HTML0)    PDF (707KB)(65)      

    Low temperature is an important limiting factor for alpine ecosystems on the Tibetan Plateau. This study is based on data from on-site experimental warming platforms (open top chambers, OTC) at three elevations (4300 m, 4500 m, 4700 m) on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. The carbon and nitrogen stoichiometry characteristics of plant communities, both above-ground and below-ground, were observed in three alpine meadow ecosystems in August and September of 2011 and August of 2012. Experimental warming significantly increased above-ground nitrogen content by 21.4% in September 2011 at 4500 m, and reduced above-ground carbon content by 3.9% in August 2012 at 4300 m. Experimental warming significantly increased below-ground carbon content by 5.5% in August 2011 at 4500 m, and the below-ground ratio of carbon to nitrogen by 28.0% in September 2011 at 4300 m, but reduced below-ground nitrogen content by 15.7% in September 2011 at 4700 m, below-ground carbon content by 34.3% in August 2012 at 4700 m, and the below-ground ratio of carbon to nitrogen by 37.9% in August 2012 at 4700 m. Experimental warming had no significant effect on the characteristics of community carbon and nitrogen stoichiometry under other conditions. Therefore, experimental warming had inconsistent effects on the carbon and nitrogen stoichiometry of plant communities at different elevations and during different months. Soil ammonium nitrogen and nitrate nitrogen content were the main factors affecting plant community carbon and nitrogen stoichiometry.

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    Comparative Study of the Impact of Drought Stress on P.centrasiaticum at the Seedling Stage in Tibet
    ZHANG Guangyu, WANG Jiangwei, ZHANG Haorui, FU Gang, SHEN Zhenxi
    Journal of Resources and Ecology    2020, 11 (3): 322-328.   DOI: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764X.2020.03.010
    Abstract183)   HTML3)    PDF (623KB)(81)      

    Pennisetum centrasiaticum is widely distributed in arid and semi-arid areas of Tibet. Its rhizome system is developed and has strong resistance to adversity. In this study, the physiological characteristics and drought resistance of P.centrasiaticum seedlings from 12 drought-stressed sites in Tibet were examined at the Lhasa Plateau Ecosystem Research Station of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. PEG-6000 solution with five levels of water potential (0, -0.7, -1.4, -2.1, and -2.8 MPa) was used to simulate drought stress, and malondialdehyde (MDA), proline (Pro) and chlorophyll contents were determined. The balance between production and elimination of reactive oxygen species in P.centrasiaticum was destroyed, leading to membrane lipid peroxidation and the production of MDA, and accelerating the decomposition of chlorophyll. P.centrasiaticum absorbed water from the outside to resist drought by secreting proline and other osmotic regulating substances. The Pro and chlorophyll contents in P.centrasiaticum showed a temporary rising trend, and then decreased with the decrease in water potential. MDA content increased with the decrease in water potential. By using the membership function method, the drought resistance of P.centrasiaticum seedlings from the 12 areas was evaluated, and the results showed that the drought resistance at the sites went from strong to weak in this order: Xietongmen > Linzhou > Sog > Damxung > Tingri > Namling > Gyirong > Linzhi > Purang > Dingjie > Longzi > Sa’gya. The drought resistance of P.centrasiaticum was strong in Xietongmen, Linzhou and Sog. Whether P.centrasiaticum from these three areas is suitable for cultivation in arid and semi-arid areas of Tibet needs further study.

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