Table of Content

    30 March 2013, Volume 4 Issue 1 Previous Issue    Next Issue
    Natural Resource Regulation on Regional Economic Development in China: Concepts, Framework and Practices
    GU Shuzhong, ZHOU Hong, YAO Yulong
    2013, 4 (1):  1-10.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2013.01.001
    Abstract ( )   PDF (1281KB) ( )   Save
    The current economic development model in China is highly dependent on natural resource consumption, and this has resulted in severe economic and social problems. Changes in natural resource restrictions are challenging the future sustainable development of the regional economy. Here, we propose a new concept called Natural Resource Regulation on Regional Economic Development (NRR). NRR is an application of government regulation to natural resources, aimed at regulating and controlling regional development. It is a set of constraints on the exploration, exploitation, utilization, operation and protection of natural resources carried out by government. This concept focuses on two aspects: the management of natural resources, and using natural resources as a tool to regulate and control the regional economy and social development. NRR mainly consists of four layers: regulation by law (RL), regulation by plans (RP), regulation by standards (RS) and concrete regulation by control indicators (RI). In addition, social participation and supervision, monitoring and evaluation, rewards and punishments are also indispensable for the framework of NRR. According to the types of resources, practical regulation of land, water, energy and environment are stricter than that of marine, mineral and forest in China. The systems of RL, RP and RS in China are basically established and have achieved considerable results, while concrete RI is still fragmented.
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    Assessment of Carbon Dynamics of Forest Ecosystems in the Poyang Lake Basin Responding to Afforestation and Future Climate Change
    ZHOU Lei, WANG Shaoqiang, JU Weimin, XIONG Zhe, Georg KINDERMANN, CHEN Jingming, SHI Hao
    2013, 4 (1):  11-19.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2013.01.002
    Abstract ( )   PDF (2018KB) ( )   Save
    Afforestation projects were applied in the Poyang Lake Basin of China at the beginning of 1980s. The large-scale plantation may dramatically influence the changes in carbon storage of forests in this basin. Therefore, climate-induced variations in the carbon balance of the Poyang Lake Basin’s forests may play an important role in the carbon cycle of China. However, we have little understanding of their long-term behavior, especially the future trend of carbon sink/source patterns under climate change and rising atmospheric CO2. The annual carbon budget of the Poyang Lake Basin’s forests during 1981–2050 was estimated by using the Integrated Terrestrial Ecosystem Carbon-budget model (InTEC) coupled with projected climate change simulated by Regional Integrated Environmental Model System (RIEMS 2.0). During 1981–2000, the rapid increment of annual NPP in this basin was possible due to large plantation. Soil organic carbon storage (0–30cm) of forests generally decreased by 1.0% per year at the beginning of plantation. Moreover, forests in this basin converted from carbon source in 1980s to carbon sink in 1990s. By 2040–2050, total carbon stocks of forest ecosystems will increase by 0.78Pg C, compared to recent years (2001–2010). Under future climate and CO2 concentration in A1B scenario, NEP of forests in Poyang Lake Basin lean to keep relative stable (20–30Tg C y-1) because of old forests except for some years induced by extreme droughts. Our results also showed that prediction of NEP of forests in Poyang Lake Basin was controlled by water limitation; in contrast, temperature was the main factor on inter-annual variability of NPP.
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    Effects of Species and Low Dose Nitrogen Addition on Litter Decomposition of Three Dominant Grasses in Hulun Buir Meadow Steppe
    ZHANG Caihong, LI Shenggong, ZHANG Leiming, XIN Xiaoping, LIU Xingren
    2013, 4 (1):  20-26.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2013.01.003
    Abstract ( )   PDF (975KB) ( )   Save
    Atmospheric nitrogen (N) deposition caused by anthropogenic activities may alter litter decomposition and species composition, and then affect N cycling and carbon (C) sequestration in an ecosystem. Using the litterbag method, we studied the effects of N addition (CK: no N addition; low-N: 1 g N m-2 y-1; high-N: 2 g N m-2 y-1) on changes in mass remaining of shoot litter decomposition of three grasses (Stipa baicalensis, Carex pediformis and Leymus chinensis) over 28 months in the Hulun Buir meadow steppe of Inner Mongolia. The results showed that the addition of high and low N had no significant effect on the decomposition of single-species litter, but low N addition slightly inhibited the decomposition of litter mixtures. In addition, litter decomposition was strongly species dependent. Our results suggest that species type is likely the main determinant of litter decomposition, and low N deposition in natural ecosystems does not influence single-species litter decomposition.
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    Patterns of Climate Change in Xinjiang Projected by IPCC SRES
    LI Lanhai, BAI Lei, YAO Yanan, YANG Qing, ZHAO Xin
    2013, 4 (1):  27-35.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2013.01.004
    Abstract ( )   PDF (2637KB) ( )   Save
    Accompanied by global climate change, the annual mean air temperature has experienced a strongly increasing trend in the western China, especially in Xinjiang. The Global Climate Model (GCM) provides an efficient and direct method to assess the process of global climate change and project future climate driven by various factors, especially human activity. Since GCMs’ low spatial resolution cannot capture the characteristics of local climate change due to the land surface’s complexity, downscaling methods, including Regional Climate Model (RCM), Bias Correction method and Statistical Method, are proposed to process raw data from GCMs for local climate change assessment. This study applied the delta method, one of Bias Correction methods, to make horizontal resolution of 24 GCMs models’ monthly outputs into 0.5℃ for analyzing Xinjiang’s future climate pattern under three IPCC SRES. A comparison between the results from downscaled dada and raw data from GCMs shows that downscaling methods can improve local climate changing feature in complex land surface and topography and to reduce the uncertainty of climate data generated from GCMs in Xinjiang. The results showed that scenarios A1B, A2 and B1 generated similar patterns and trends in annual mean air temperature and annual precipitation in the early 21st century with fluctuations in the middle of the 21st century. The annual mean air temperature will reach 10℃ 11.1℃ and 8.5℃ in A1B, A2 and B1 by the end of the 21st century, respectively, while the annual precipitation during the projection period will experience an increasing trend with a little fluctuation. During 2020 and 2070, the annual temperature in A1B scenario is greater than the other scenarios on regional average. The annual precipitation in the A1B scenario is also greater than other scenarios during 2020 and 2040 on regional average. However, there exists a large uncertainty within different SRES with an range of 6℃ in annual temperature and about 200 mm in annual precipitation. Regionally, annual temperature increases less in the middle Tianshan Mountains, Yili River Basin, the Southern Tianshan Mountains, and downstream of Tarim River than in the Junggar Basin, Pamirs and the northern slope of Kunlun Mountains by the late 21st century. In the western portion of southern Xinjiang, the annual precipitation shows a slightly decreasing trend, but a significant increasing trend was found in eastern Changji, Turpan, Hami and northern Kunlun-Altun Mountains.
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    Spatial-temporal Changes in Ecological Risk of Land Use before and after Grain-for-Green Policy in Zhengning County, Gansu Province
    SHEN Jianxiu, WANG Xiuhong
    2013, 4 (1):  36-42.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2013.01.005
    Abstract ( )   PDF (1150KB) ( )   Save
    The Grain-for-Green Policy aims to convert cropland to grassland and forest across western China, and evaluating ecological risk is essential to its implementation. Because few recent studies have focused on eco-risk changes of land use in the areas affected by significant policies, this paper took Zhengning County in Gansu Province as our focal area, and studied spatial-temporal changes in ecological risk before and after policy implementation. Based on indices of landscape fragmentation and ecosystem service value, an ecological risk assessment method using ArcGIS and Fragstats was done. The regional gravity center model and land spatial distribution model were also used to enrich the quantitative description of divisional eco-risk and its spatial-temporal variation in the county. Results showed that the implementation of the policy has contributed to an overall reduction in ecological risk in Zhengning County, with a divisional degree order reduction following the pattern: eastern Zhengning > western Zhengning > central Zhengning. The gravity center for eco-risk shifted 4288 m southwest from 1995 to 2010 due to landscape fragmentation. The study implies that greater attention should be paid to forest and grassland restoration in eastern Zhengning, cropland protection in central Zhengning, and soil and water conservation in western Zhengning.
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    Causes and Restoration of Degraded Alpine Grassland in Northern Tibet
    WANG Jingsheng, ZHANG Xianzhou, CHEN Baoxiong, SHI Peili, ZHANG Junlong, SHEN Zhenxi, TAO Jian, WU Jianshuang
    2013, 4 (1):  43-49.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2013.01.006
    Abstract ( )   PDF (1733KB) ( )   Save
    Grassland in northern Tibet plays an important role in the eco-security of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau and the restoration of deserted and degraded grassland is now a focus for governments. We used remote sensing, simulations and field surveys to analyze the current status, trends and causes of grassland degradation across northern Tibet. We develop several recovery models for degraded grassland based on field experiments in the region. We found that slightly degraded grassland covers 62% and that moderate to severely degraded grassland occupied 15.1% in the Chang Tang Plateau. The amount of degraded alpine steppe increased from 1991, and the amount of area classified as severely degraded increased sharply from 2000. The cause of degraded steppe in northwestern Tibet may be the result of warming and an arid climate; the cause of severe degradation in mid and eastern regions was mainly from overgrazing. Three restoration models are proposed for different levels of degradation: “enclosures” for slightly degraded areas, “enclosures with fertilization” for moderately degraded areas, and “enclosure with oversowing and fertilization” for severely degraded areas.
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    Carrying Capacity of Water Resources for Three-North Shelterbelt Construction in China
    YAN Shenghu, DONG Suocheng, LI Zehong, LIU Jiajun, WANG Junni
    2013, 4 (1):  50-55.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2013.01.007
    Abstract ( )   PDF (1025KB) ( )   Save
    Water shortage is an important constraint factor in the construction of the Three-North Shelterbelt (TNS). Here, we analyzed temporal-spatial patterns in water resources and trends in the Three-North region. We evaluated the water resource carrying capacity (WRCC) of 623 counties in the project area during the fifth phase of the TNS Development Program. Results show that 387 counties are appropriate for forestation, 185 counties can be planted, and 60 counties are inappropriate for forestation because of water resource constraints.
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    The Relationship between Patterns of Economic Development and Increasing Carbon Emissions in Western China
    JIAO Bing, YANG Fengming
    2013, 4 (1):  56-62.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2013.01.008
    Abstract ( )   PDF (1081KB) ( )   Save
    With the implementation of the “Development of Western China” strategy, this region has become the fastest growing economic area in China. However, rapid economic growth has resulted in a substantial increase in carbon emissions and affected energy reduction goals. In order to effectively control the rapid increase in carbon emissions across western China, we need a comprehensively analyze the main factors causing these increases. Here, we analyze the relationship between economic development patterns and carbon emissions. The findings suggest that consumption upgrades and industrial transformation have a positive correlation with carbon emissions in this region. We then conducted an econometric FGLS analysis on the relationship and its transmission mechanism between economic growth and CO2 emissions with cross-province panel data from 1991 to 2009. A positive correlation was found, and the relationship is more significant after the implementation of the western development strategy. The influence coefficient of change in primary, secondary and tertiary industries is 16.4. The influence coefficient of increased share of heavy industry and extractive industry in the secondary industry is 14.3, and the influence coefficients of per-capita living expenditure and per capita traffic expenditure are 5.6 and 6.5. Traditional population size and income scale have a weak impact on carbon emissions, and the influence coefficients of population size and income scale are only 0.73 and 0.86. GDP increases have a second major impact on the carbon emissions. Energy intensity has a negative relationship with carbon emissions and urbanization level has a positive relationship (coefficients are -8.2 and 4.65).
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    Ecological Restoration of Degraded Wetlands in China
    XIE Dong, ZHOU Hengjie, JI Haiting, AN Shuqing
    2013, 4 (1):  63-69.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2013.01.009
    Abstract ( )   PDF (970KB) ( )   Save
    Natural wetland is one of the most important ecosystems on the earth. However, the natural wetlands in China suffered great loss and degradation due to the rapid growth of human population and economy, together with the long-term over-exploitation. Therefore, improving and restoring wetlands’ various functions, such as slowing the runoff, flood control and drought prevention, water purification and restoring and rebuilding wetlands in the appropriate geographical places are the pressing issues human face today. Based on the fundamental concepts of the wetland restoration, this article expounded its principles and guidelines, illustrated three basic modes, and summarized the main goal and basic strategy in China. Finally the assessment and future trends of the wetland restoration were discussed.
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    Impacts of Part-time Farming on Agricultural Land Use in Ecologically-vulnerable Areas in North China
    HAO Haiguang, LI Xiubin, ZHANG Jiping
    2013, 4 (1):  70-79.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2013.01.010
    Abstract ( )   PDF (1183KB) ( )   Save
    Part-time farming has been increasing steadily in China. It is currently the largest segment among all the farm sectors in the country. Based on rural household survey data in Taipusi County as a case site ofecologically-vulnerable areas in North China, we firstly classify farm households into four types according to the proportion of non-farm income in total income, and then compare their agricultural land use patterns to empirically examine the impacts of part-time farming on agricultural land use in this area. The results suggest that non-farming households rent out all their land and give up farming, and this satisfies the expectation of other households to expand land area. The crop planting structure was not significantly different among the households, which reflected the farmers’ will to pursuit labor productivity. Part-time farming households invest more capital and materials than full-time faming households because the income derived from non-farm employment relaxes the financial constraint of households. However, the amount of labor input of part-time farming households tends to be less, and farming practices are dominated by the elderly, female and laborers with relative low educations.Yields of crops and the benefit of agricultural land use incline to reduce, which suggest that the potential of land use productivity is more elastic to labor inputs than capital inputs in the study area.
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    Toward a Sustainable Energy Development Strategy from the Perspective of Food Security: Challenges and Opportunities for China
    SHEN Lei, XUE Jingjing, GAO Tianming
    2013, 4 (1):  80-87.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2013.01.011
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    China’s energy security situation is increasingly severe. There are many challenges and opportunities in the energy development sector. Bio-fuel has much superiority: abundant resources, product diversification, recycling and increasing rural income. Speeding up bio-fuel development should be a strategic direction for China. In this study we evaluate the relationship between bio-energy utilization and food security using the grey relational analysis method. The results show that China’s biomass energy development has caused little negative impact on food security as determined by agricultural production. However, that does not mean China’s bio-energy can develop in an unrestricted way. Developing bio-energy requires the consideration of many factors, including large investment in the short term and fierce competition from biomass supply.
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    Causes of Environmental Pollution after Industrial Restructuring in Gansu Province
    WAN Yongkun, DONG Suocheng, MAO Qiliang, WANG Junni
    2013, 4 (1):  88-92.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2013.01.012
    Abstract ( )   PDF (775KB) ( )   Save
    The paper analyzes coupling mechanisms and the evolution between industrial restructuring and environmental pollution. We empirically examined a case study from Gansu Province and found that industrial restructuring had promoted economic development but increased pressure on the environment. Given that heterogeneous industries generate different kinds of pollution, optimizing industrial structure is a feasible solution to fully realizing sustainable development.
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    The Ecological Password in the Hani Ethnic Inhabited Area in the Benna River Basin in Yunnan
    GUO Jinyong
    2013, 4 (1):  93-96.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2013.01.013
    Abstract ( )   PDF (298KB) ( )   Save
    In China, the Hani ethnic groups are one of the unique ethnic minorities inhabited in Yuunan Province, mainly scattered in the wide areas in between the south of the Honghe River and the east of the Lancang River. Honghe Hani and Yi Nationality Autonomous Prefecture is the main Hani-inhabited area, mainly concerned a few counties like Honghe, Yuanyang, Luchun and Jinping. However the mountainous area of Benna River area in the territory of the Honghe Prefecture is really the main place where the Hani ethnic groups are inhabited.
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