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Spatial and Temporal Changes of Arable Land Driven by Urbanization and Ecological Restoration in China

  • Liyan Wang
  • Herzberger Anna
  • Liyun Zhang
  • Yi Xiao
  • Yaqing Wang
  • Yang Xiao
  • Jianguo Liu
  • Zhiyun Ouyang
Article
  • 19 Downloads

Abstract

Since the industrial revolution, human activities have both expanded and intensified across the globe resulting in accelerated land use change. Land use change driven by China’s development has put pressure on the limited arable land resources, which has affected grain production. Competing land use interests are a potential threat to food security in China. Therefore, studying arable land use changes is critical for ensuring future food security and maintaining the sustainable development of arable land. Based on data from several major sources, we analyzed the spatio-temporal differences of arable land among different agricultural regions in China from 2000 to 2010 and identified the drivers of arable land expansion and loss. The results revealed that arable land decreased by 5.92 million ha or 3.31%. Arable land increased in the north and decreased in the south of China. Urbanization and ecological restoration programs were the main drivers of arable land loss, while the reclamation of other land cover types (e.g., forest, grassland, and wetland) was the primary source of the increased arable land. The majority of arable land expansion occurred in the Northwest, but the centroid for grain production moved to northeast, which indicated that new arable land was of poor quality and did not significantly contribute to the grain production capacity. When combined with the current ‘Red Line of Arable Land Policy’ (RAL) and ‘Ecological Redline Policy’ (EPR), this study can provide effective information for arable land policymaking and help guide the sustainable development of arable land.

Keywords

arable land spatio-temporal characteristic agricultural regionalization driver China 

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Notes

Acknowledgments

The authors acknowledge the Institute of Remote Sensing Applications, Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) that kindly provided the mapped data to definite the distribution of arable land.

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Copyright information

© Science Press, Northeast Institute of Geography and Agricultural Ecology, CAS and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Liyan Wang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Herzberger Anna
    • 3
  • Liyun Zhang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Yi Xiao
    • 1
  • Yaqing Wang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Yang Xiao
    • 1
  • Jianguo Liu
    • 3
  • Zhiyun Ouyang
    • 1
  1. 1.State Key Laboratory of Urban and Regional Ecology, Research Center for Eco-Environmental SciencesChinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  2. 2.University of Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  3. 3.Center for Systems Integration and SustainabilityMichigan State UniversityEast LansingUSA

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