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Application of UTCI in China from tourism perspective

Abstract

This study uses ERA-Interim reanalysis data and the Universal Thermal Climate Index (UTCI) to investigate the spatial pattern of thermal bioclimatic conditions in China. Our results show that the annual UTCI increases with decreasing latitude throughout most of China. Areas that experience “no thermal stress” are located southeast of the line formed by the Yanshan Mountains, Taihang Mountains, the southern edge of the Loess Plateau, and the eastern edge of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, with an area of 312.83e4 km2. During spring and autumn, the UTCI distribution is similar to the annual distribution. During summer, areas with “no thermal stress” cover the largest area (563.55e4 km2), including northern and southwestern China; in contrast, during winter, areas with “no thermal stress” only occur south of the Nanling Mountains. The annual number of days with “no thermal stress” increases from north to south in central and eastern China, exceeding 200 days in the Sichuan Basin, the southeastern coastal regions and the Yungui Plateau. The minimum and maximum values occur on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau (≤10 days) and the southern Yungui Plateau (>280 days). Seasonal analysis indicates that there are over 70 days with “no thermal stress” in the Sichuan Basin, the Yungui Plateau and the middle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River during spring and autumn, while there are more than 80 days in northern and southwestern China during summer and over 80 days in areas south of the Nanling Mountains during winter. The results of this study can be helpful for optimization of the tourism industry and tourism destinations development in China.

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Acknowledgments

This work was supported by grants from the Strategic Priority Research Program of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) (Grant No. XDA05080101).

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Correspondence to Qinqin Kong.

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Ge, Q., Kong, Q., Xi, J. et al. Application of UTCI in China from tourism perspective. Theor Appl Climatol 128, 551–561 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00704-016-1731-z

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Keywords

  • Loess Plateau
  • Thermal Comfort
  • Sichuan Basin
  • Physiologically Equivalent Temperature
  • Tourism Destination