Regional Environmental Change

, Volume 19, Issue 2, pp 451–460 | Cite as

Historical changes in the depth of seasonal freezing of “Xing’anling-Baikal” permafrost in China

  • Zhongqiong ZhangEmail author
  • Meiting Hou
  • Qingbai Wu
  • Siru Gao
Original Article


“Xing’anling-Baikal” permafrost is located in the southern edge of the Northern Hemisphere permafrost, which is one of the most important regions of permafrost changes. Based on the monthly meteorological data and circumpolar active layer monitoring data in the last few decades, we analyzed the changes in the depth of seasonal freezing (DSF) and the thermal regime of Xing’anling-Baikal permafrost in China, and compared the state with that of the permafrost in Mongolia at the same latitude (LAT). The “Xing’anling-Baikal” permafrost in China was not connected in the section. The DSF changed between 0.78 and 3.25 m. In the study area, DSF was the thickest in Tulihe and reduced to around. The change rate reached − 16.0–4.9 cm/a and decreased in most areas. The ground temperature raised at a rate of 0–0.41 °C/a, whereas that of other few areas decreased with a rate of − 0.35 °C/a. Freezing duration spanned 141–176 days. The changes were related to air temperature, altitude, LAT, and precipitation in the local area. Compared with the state of permafrost in Mongolia at the same LAT, the permafrost in China exhibited a faster rate of degradation. The permafrost in the Xing’anling area significantly responded to climate change. The results will aid in understanding the temporal and spatial variation in local permafrost and provide relevant verification for regional permafrost.


“Xing’anling-Baikal” permafrost Ground temperature Depth of seasonal freezing Local factors 



We express our sincerest gratitude to the anonymous reviewers for providing us constructive and insightful comments and suggestions. We also thank the Natural Science Foundation of China (41771074, 41690144, and 41771078). The Major Program of Bureau of International Cooperation, the Chinese Academy of Sciences (131B62KYSB20170012).

Supplementary material

10113_2018_1407_MOESM1_ESM.docx (482 kb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 481 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Zhongqiong Zhang
    • 1
    Email author
  • Meiting Hou
    • 2
  • Qingbai Wu
    • 1
  • Siru Gao
    • 1
  1. 1.State Key Laboratory of Frozen Soil Engineering, Northwest Institute of Eco-Environment and ResourcesChinese Academy of ScienceLanzhouChina
  2. 2.China Meteorological Administration Training CentreBeijingChina

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