Table of Content

    30 September 2018, Volume 9 Issue 5 Previous Issue    Next Issue
    Research Methods of Water Resources Carrying Capacity: Progress and Prospects
    LI Yi, YANG Yanzhao, YAN Huimin, YOU Zhen
    2018, 9 (5):  455-460.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2018.05.001
    Abstract ( )   HTML ( )   PDF (392KB) ( )   Save
    The study of water resources carrying capacity (WRCC), a major component of resources and environment carrying capacity (RECC), began relatively recently. However, WRCC has witnessed a rapid development in terms of concept, calculation methods, and empirical research in recent years. WRCC has become an important criterion for rational development and utilization of regional water resources. This paper first briefly reviews the development process of WRCC. It then evaluates and contrasts the representative research methods of conventional trend (CT), system dynamics (SD), multi-objective model analysis (MOMA), comprehensive evaluation (CE), and dynamic simulation recursive (DSR). The results show that although there are various methods of WRCC, the major methods used have become out-of-date and stagnant, and new more sophisticated methods and technologies are lacking. Specifically, our analysis found that the index system, scientific robustness and comprehensiveness of evaluation criteria of current research methods are insufficient and need to be improved. In addition, the dynamic research of WRCC should receive more attention, and it requires further study to make it more applicable to real-world uses. Finally, a set of monitoring and early warning systems should be established and applied in demonstration areas to meet the urgent needs of water resource management in the new era.
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    Runoff and Soil Erosion on Slope Cropland: A Review
    WANG Shanshan, SUN Baoyang, LI Chaodong, LI Zhanbin, MA Bo
    2018, 9 (5):  461-470.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2018.05.002
    Abstract ( )   HTML ( )   PDF (367KB) ( )   Save
    Soil erosion has become a serious environmental problem worldwide, and slope land is the main source of soil erosion. As a primary cover of slope land, crops have an important influence on the occurrence and development of runoff and soil erosion on slope land. This paper reviews the current understanding of runoff and soil erosion on slope cropland. Crops mainly impact splash detachment, slope runoff, and sediment yield. In this review paper, the effects of crop growth and rainfall on the splash detachment rate and the spatial distribution of splash detachment are summarized. Crop growth has a significant impact on runoff and sediment yield. Rainfall intensity and slope gradient can influence the level of erosive energy that causes soil erosion. Furthermore, other factors such as antecedent soil water content, soil properties, soil surface physical crust, and soil surface roughness can affect soil anti-erodibility. The varying effects of different crops and with different influence mechanisms on runoff and soil erosion, as well as changes in their ability to influence erosion under different external conditions should all remain focal points of future research. The effect of crop vegetation on runoff and soil erosion on slope land is a very important factor in understanding large-scale soil erosion systems, and in-depth study of this topic is highly significant for both theory and practice.
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    Review of Research on Characteristic Tourism Resources Exploitation in Sichuan Province
    LIU Qiongying
    2018, 9 (5):  471-476.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2018.05.003
    Abstract ( )   HTML ( )   PDF (326KB) ( )   Save
    With the rapid development of tourism in China’s Sichuan Province, research on the development of tourism resources in Sichuan has drawn increasing attention from the academic community. This article briefly reviews three aspects of the literature on the development of tourism resources in Sichuan: a survey and evaluation of Sichuan tourism resources, the development of tourism resources that are characteristic of Sichuan, and the development of tourism resources in Sichuan. The current situation of the development of Sichuan’s tourism resources was considered and seven factors were evaluated: tourism in ancient towns, tourism in ethnic areas, folk tourism, eco-tourism, rural tourism, red tourism and earthquake tourism. The article also addresses the development of tourism resources in Sichuan. Most existing studies of the development of tourism resources in Sichuan are based on applied research; they are deficient in both scope and depth, and cannot serve as a basis for the development of theory. Few studies have focused on market demand for tourism, the establishment of management mechanisms or the development of regional cooperation. In the future, tourism theories like space theory for space competition, RMP analysis theory, cultural ecology theory, and other tourism theories should be closely integrated with the development of tourism resources in Sichuan. Whether the subject matter is sustainable development, market demand, management mechanism construction, regional collaborative development or other concerns, this will allow more systematic, in-depth studies that produce improved results that are both pertinent and realistic.
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    Land Resources and Land Use
    Risk Assessment of Vegetation Degradation Using Geographic Information System: A Case Study of Qareh Aghaj Basin, Iran
    Masoud MASOUDI, Parviz JOKAR
    2018, 9 (5):  477-483.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2018.05.004
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    The entire land of Southern Iran faces problems arising out of various types of land degradation of which vegetation degradation forms one of the major types. The Qareh Aghaj basin (1 265 000 ha), which covers the upper reaches of Mond River, has been chosen for a test risk assessment of this type. The different kinds of data for indicators of vegetation degradation were gathered from the records and published reports of the governmental offices of Iran. A new model has been developed for assessing the risk of vegetation degradation. Taking into consideration nine indicators of vegetation degradation the model identifies areas with “Potential Risk” (risky zones) and areas of “Actual Risk” as well as projects the probability of the worse degradation in future. The preparation of risk maps based on the GIS analysis of these indicators will be helpful for prioritizing the areas to initiate remedial measures. By fixing the thresholds of severity classes of the nine indicators a hazard map for each indicator was first prepared in GIS. The risk classes were defined on the basis of risk scores arrived at by assigning the appropriate attributes to the indicators and the risk map was prepared by overlaying nine hazard maps in the GIS. Areas under actual risk have been found to be widespread (78%) in the basin and when the risk map classified into subclasses of potential risk with different probability levels the model projects a statistical picture of the risk of vegetation degradation.
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    Effect of Covering-soil Thickness on Crop Growth on Bare Rock nd Gravel Land in an Ecological Restoration Project
    ZHANG Yang, LI Zhanbin, HAN Jichang, LI Peng, LI Juan
    2018, 9 (5):  484-492.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2018.05.005
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    To study the mechanism by which the thickness of covering soil effects crop growth in an ecological restoration project of bare rock and gravel land, the physiological characteristics of summer maize were observed during 2010-2015. This experiment was set up on exposed rock land, which had been covered by soil with six different thicknesses: 30 (C30), 40 (C40), 50 (C50), 60 (C60), 80 (C80) and 100 cm (C100). During the experiment, soil physical properties and the physiological traits and yields of crops were recorded. The results indicated several effects. 1) With the same thickness level, soil bulk density of the covering soil increased in successive planting years. There was a logarithmic relationship between soil bulk density and covering thickness. There was also a strong algorithmic relationship between covering thickness and sedimentation coefficient (R2=0.91). 2) The thickness of covering soil had a significant influence on both the height of summer maize, and soil and plant analyzer development (SPAD) values. In each treatment, the growth rates of the crops during the jointing and booting stages were higher than that in the booting to grain filling stage. After two years of land-use, the mean height of the crop in the C50 treatment was 8.16%, 3.32%, 3.31%, 9.86% and 7.55% higher than that for the C30, C40, C60, C80 and C100 treatments, respectively. The differences between treatments were significant (p < 0.05). SPAD values were highest at the heading stage. The highest value for the C50 treatment was 298.41 after two years of land-use. 3) Soil thickness significantly affected yields and the water use efficiency (WUE) of summer maize. The highest average crop yield and WUE value during the experimental period for the C50 treatment were 4614.12 kg hm-2 and 13.57 kg hm-2 mm, respectively. For the C50 treatment the multi-year average water use efficiency was significantly higher than that of the other treatments in 2010-2015. In conclusion, a soil thickness of 50 cm covering the bare exposed rock was adequate as a tillage layer for the crop, and all crop growth indexes in this treatment were better than for other soil thicknesses. The results provide a scientific basis for the land remediation and ecological restoration of bare rock and gravel land. At the same time, for Africa, where one-third of the land is desert, arable land resources are relatively scarce and agricultural ecology is fragile, can serve as a significant reference to improve the ecological environment, develop arable land resources and increase agricultural income.
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    Prevention and Control of Continuous Cropping Obstacle of Watermelon by Reductive Soil Disinfestation (RSD)
    ZHOU Kaisheng
    2018, 9 (5):  493-499.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2018.05.006
    Abstract ( )   HTML ( )   PDF (550KB) ( )   Save
    This study aimed to explore whether reductive soil disinfestation (RSD) is an effective method of controlling continuous cropping obstacle of watermelon. Samples of watermelon continuous cropping soils were treated by RSD in laboratory tests and pot experiments in August 2015 and from December 10, 2016 to April 10, 2017. The soil samples for the laboratory test were divided into 16 groups, and each group comprised three parallel samples of 100 g (dry soil weight). Except for the original and control (CK) samples, the 14 other groups of soil samples were treated with different combinations of 1% or 3% alfalfa powder, 1% or 3% ammonia (NH3) water, and 1% or 3% acetic acid. The soil samples were placed inside size-five self-styled plastic bags and incubated in a constant-temperature biochemical incubator at 35°C for 14 days after blending, flooding, and sealing. Seven groups of soil samples were designed for the pot experiments based on the laboratory test results. Each group consisted of 30 parallel samples of 3 kg (dry soil weight). These samples were incubated outdoors for 4 months after mixing with alfalfa powder and/or NH3 and/or acetic acid according to the experimental design, blending, flooding, and sealing. Watermelon seedlings were planted in the air-dried soil samples from May to July in 2017. The results showed that the pH of the soil samples treated by RSD were elevated except for those samples with acetic acid. In addition, the electrical conductivities of the soil samples treated by RSD were effectively adjusted. The presence of soil-borne pathogenic Fusarium oxysporum f.sp. niveum was significantly suppressed (p < 0.05) in soil samples treated by RSD, and the incidence and mortality rate of watermelons planted in these samples were remarkably lower than those planted in the CK and flooded CK soil samples. Therefore, continuous cropping obstacle of watermelon can be controlled by RSD.
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    Resource Economy
    Study of Factors Affecting Carbon Emissions— Based on an Empirical Analysis of ASEAN
    TIAN Wenju, XU Zheng
    2018, 9 (5):  500-507.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2018.05.007
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    This paper uses a VAR model to empirically analyze the impact of economic growth, financial development, and urbanization on carbon emissions of the ASEAN countries from 2000 to 2013. The empirical results show that economic growth and carbon emissions, and financial development and carbon emissions have unidirectional Granger causality relationships. Economic growth and urbanization will increase carbon emissions, while financial development will reduce carbon emissions during the initial stage but have little impact on carbon emissions over the long term. Economic growth and urbanization are the main variables to forecast the degree of variance of carbon emissions, while financial development is the least important variable to forecast the degree of variance of carbon emissions. Finally, this study puts forward policy suggestions on improving environmental quality as economic growth, financial development and urbanization occur.
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    Research on the Sustainability of Afghanistan Based on the Emergy Analysis
    JIN Lei, LI Haitao, YANG Jinfan
    2018, 9 (5):  508-515.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2018.05.008
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    Afghanistan is an important country for the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road (the Belt and Road) proposed by China. Due to years of war, Afghanistan is not well-developed economically. However, Afghanistan has abundant mineral resources and unique geographical advantages that are of far-reaching significance for Chinese economic strategic development. To investigate the sustainability of the eco-economic system of Afghanistan, we completed a quantitative evaluation of the emergy of Afghanistan during the period 2008 to 2015 by establishing an indicator system based on an emergy analysis. Results showed that from 2008 to 2015, the total emergy used of Afghanistan increased from 5.56×1022 sej to 9.75×1022 sej, among which the proportion of non-renewable emergy was less than 25.7%. This indicates that local resources in Afghanistan have yet to be exploited and utilized effectively and that its economic development relied heavily on the input of external resources. Meanwhile, the Emergy Sustainability Index (ESI) of Afghanistan from 2008 to 2015 dropped from 3.00 to 0.72, the Environmental Loading Ratio (ELR) increased from 0.77 to 2.06, and the Emergy Yield Ratio (EYR) dropped from 2.31 to 1.49, reflecting the imbalanced utilization of resources and the low level of economic development in Afghanistan. As a result, the potential for sustainable development of Afghanistan is relatively great. Basic infrastructure construction and reasonable exploitation of natural resources are the urgent needs.
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    Assessing the Impact of the Sloping Land Conversion Program on Rural Household Income in the Upper Reaches of Minjiang River, China
    HUANG Jiali, ZHAO Hui, LIU Yunwei, YANG Jianying
    2018, 9 (5):  516-525.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2018.05.009
    Abstract ( )   HTML ( )   PDF (779KB) ( )   Save
    One secondary target of the SLCP is poverty reduction. Therefore, the impact of the SLCP on household income is a subject of much research. This study was conducted to determine whether the SLCP has affected incomes of households at different income levels13 years after its implementation. Using survey data from 2012 on rural households’ livelihoods in the upper reaches of the Minjiang River in Sichuan Province and using the non-participating households as a reference, the current impact of the SLCP on household income is calculated with a multiple linear regression model and a quantile regression model. The socio-geographic features of participating and non-participating households are also be compared. The results show no significant differences between the SLCP participating and non-participating households in many socio-demographic characteristics. Participating in the SLCP had no significant impact on household income at all income levels in the study area in 2012. This finding suggests that the SLCP is not currently increasing household income significantly in the study area, and that the implementation plan of the SLCP should be changed in this area in order to achieve its poverty reduction goal.
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    Resources and Ecology in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau
    Vegetation Pattern in Northern Tibet in Relation to Environmental and Geo-spatial Factors
    TIAN Li, ZHANG Yangjian, Claus HOLZAPFEL, HUANG Ke, CHEN Ning, TAO Jian, ZHU Juntao
    2018, 9 (5):  526-537.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2018.05.010
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    Environmental and Geo-spatial factors have long been considered as crucial determinants of species composition and distributions. However, quantifying the relative contributions of these factors for the alpine ecosystems is lacking. The Tibetan Plateau has a unique ecological environment and vegetation types. Our objectives are to quantify the spatial distributions of plant communities on the Northern Tibetan Alpine grasslands and to explore the relationships between vegetation composition, Geo-spatial factors and environmental factors. We established 63 field plots along a 1200-km gradient on the Northern Tibetan Plateau Alpine Grassland and employed the two-way indicator species analysis (TWINSPAN) and the detrended canonical correspondence analysis (DCCA). Fourteen communities of alpine grassland were identifiable along the transect and consisted of three vegetation types: Alpine meadow, Alpine steppe, and desert steppe. Vegetation composition and spatial distribution appeared to be largely determined by mean annual precipitation and less influenced by temperature. A large fraction (73.5%) of the variation in vegetation distribution was explained by environmental variables along this transect, somewhat less by Geo-spatial factors (56.3%). The environmental and Geo-spatial factors explained 29.6% and 12.3% of the total variation, respectively, while their interaction explained 43.9%. Our findings provide strong empirical evidence for explaining biological and environmental synergetic relationships in Northern Tibet.
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    Estimation of Daily Vapor Pressure Deficit Using MODIS Potential Evapotranspiration on the Tibetan Plateau
    SHEN Zhenxi, SUN Wei, LI Shaowei, ZHANG Haorui, FU Gang, YU Chengqun, ZHANG Guangyu
    2018, 9 (5):  538-544.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2018.05.011
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    Vapor pressure deficit (VPD) is an important parameter in modelling hydrologic cycles and vegetation productivity. Meteorological stations are scarce in remote areas, which often results in imprecise estimations of VPD on the Tibetan Plateau. Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) provides evapotranspiration data, which may offer the possibility of scaling up VPD estimations on the Tibetan Plateau. However, no studies thus far have estimated VPD using MODIS evapotranspiration data on the Tibetan Plateau. Therefore, this study used MODIS potential evapotranspiration (PET) to estimate VPD in alpine meadows, alpine steppes, croplands, forests and shrublands for the year, spring, summer, autumn and winter in 2000-2012. A series of root-mean- squared-error (RMSE) and mean-absolute-error (MAE) values were obtained for correlating measured VPD and estimated VPD using MODIS PET data for each listed time period and vegetation type: whole year (0.98-2.15 hPa and 0.68-1.44 hPa), spring (0.95-2.34 hPa and 0.72-1.54 hPa), summer (1.39-2.60 hPa and 0.89-1.96 hPa), autumn (0.78-1.93 hPa and 0.56-1.36 hPa), winter (0.48-1.40 hPa and 0.36-0.98 hPa), alpine steppes (0.48- 1.39 hPa and 0.36-1.00 hPa), alpine meadows (0.58-1.39 hPa and 0.44-0.90 hPa), croplands (1.10-2.55 hPa and 0.82-1.74 hPa), shrublands (0.98-1.90 hPa and 0.78-1.37 hPa), and forests (1.40-2.60 hPa and 0.98-1.96 hPa), respectively. Therefore, MODIS PET may be used to estimate VPD, and better results may be obtained if future studies incorporate vegetation types and seasons when the VPD data are estimated using MODIS PET on the Tibetan Plateau.
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    Geographical and Botanical Variation in Concentrations of Molybdenum in Natural Pasture Plants and Surface Water and Yak Molybdenum Ingestion in North Tibet, China
    TIAN Yuan, YU Chengqun, ZHA Xinjie, WU Jianshuang, GAO Xing, FENG Chujian
    2018, 9 (5):  545-553.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2018.05.012
    Abstract ( )   HTML ( )   PDF (489KB) ( )   Save
    The North Tibet plateau is the world highest plateau with a unique alpine grassland and water environment. To obtain a better understanding of the correct supply of Molybdenum (Mo) to livestock in north Tibet, we investigated the content and geographical variation of Mo in different families of pasture plants (n=1017) and water (n=40), then discuss the Cuprum (Cu):Mo ratio in different plant families, and calculate the total Mo intake of the yak in north Tibet. The average Mo concentration in five families preferred for grazing are: Compositae (2.71 μg g-1), Leguminosae (2.70 μg g-1), Gramineae (2.48 μg g-1), Cyperaceae (1.63 μg g-1), and Rosaceae (1.51 μg g-1). There was a strong geographical variation in Mo concentration (p < 0.001). The mean value of Mo in north Tibet surface water from 15 sites is 0.89 µg L-1. The Mo ingestion by yak through these plants and water in north Tibet is about 9586 µg day-1 which means the toxicity of Mo does not exist in the average daily diet. However, the large geographical variation found may cause some toxicity of Mo in the average daily intake of north Tibet pasture plants in some areas. The Cu:Mo ratio of 2:60 is considered the limit for risk of Mo hyperactivity, while extremely high Cu:Mo ratios may lead to chronic copper poisoning. Our survey of plant samples found 43.29% below and 29.3% above the limiting Cu:Mo ratio of 60 indicating some risk to north Tibet livestock.
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    Investigation and Monitoring of Biological Resources
    Conflict on the Range: Evaluating Driving Factors of Attitudes Toward Prey Species in Qilianshan
    Casey D. SULLIVAN, CHEN Pengju, Justine Shanti ALEXANDER, BAI Defeng, SHI Kun
    2018, 9 (5):  554-565.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2018.05.013
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    Human-wildlife conflict (HWC) is a global conservation issue of increasing concern, and understanding the factors driving conflict is crucial for preventing or mitigating it. In many parts of China, large human populations and increasing development has led to an escalation in HWC with both carnivore and prey species. In this paper we assess herder attitudes toward blue sheep (Pseudaois nayaur, Hodgson, 1833), white lipped deer (Carvus albirostris, Przewalski, 1883), red deer (Cervus elaphus, Linnaeus, 1758), and marmot (Marmota himalayana Hodgson, 1841) through interview-based surveys conducted in 46 households across 8 villages in Qilianshan National Nature Reserve, Gansu, China. We also examine the perceived impact of three ecological-restoration policies (anti-grazing, sustainable grazing, and grass-planting policies) on livelihoods, and how this affects attitudes toward wildlife. Herders reported neutral attitudes toward wildlife species in general, but reported negative attitudes towards blue sheep. Mixed-effects modeling revealed that herder attitudes toward the target species varied significantly across villages, but other socioeconomic variables had limited explanatory power for attitudes. Furthermore, we found that while policy implementation was negatively perceived by herders, anti-grazing policy implementation and total policy implementation were positively correlated with positive attitudes toward wildlife, highlighting a potential gap between perceived threats and actual threats. Finally, we show that the leading cause of reported livestock death is preventable disease, alleviation of which may help improve attitudes toward wildlife.
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    Biodiversity Assessment of Mammal and Bird Species from Camera Trap Data in Yanchiwan National Nature Reserve, Gansu Province, China
    ZHANG Chengcheng, WANG Jun, Justine Shanti ALEXANDER, DOU Zhigang, WU Liji, DONG Wantao, Dabuxilite, YANG Jucai, SHI Kun
    2018, 9 (5):  566-574.  doi: 10.5814/j.issn.1674-764x.2018.05.014
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    Camera traps serve as an important tool for monitoring species diversity. We used data from camera traps set for capturing snow leopards (Panthera uncia) in the Yanchiwan National Nature Reserve, Gansu Province, China, to assess species richness with respect to mammal and birds species. We also assessed survey efficiency for species detection, and conducted an initial analysis of species interactions. The survey effort of 10, 171 camera workdays yielded 2, 868 suitable animal image events involving 17 mammal and 20 bird species. Among these, the dhole (Cuon alpinus) is considered to be Endangered, the snow leopard and white-lipped deer (Cervus albirostris) Vulnerable, and the Pallas’s cat (Feli smanul), mountain weasel (Mustela altaica), Himalayan griffon (Gyps himalayensis) and cinereous vulture (Aegypius monachus) Near Threatened under the IUCN red list. Fourteen species were also listed as key protected wild animals according to China national standards. Both the rarefaction curves and richness estimators suggested our sampling for mammal and pheasant species is sufficient, while more survey efforts are still needed to detect other bird species. With a focus on the dominant species Eurasian lynx (Lynx lynx), occupancy models were used to estimate site use and detection probability for selected species, and to investigate predator-prey relationships between lynx on the one hand and woolly hare (Lepus oiostolus), pika (Ochotona spp.) and Tibetan partridge (Perdix hodgsoniae) on the other. We give recommendations on how to increase efficiency in camera-based species inventory and biodiversity monitoring.
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