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Land Use/Cover Change in the Middle Reaches of the Heihe River Basin over 2000-2011 and Its Implications for Sustainable Water Resource Management.

Hu X, Lu L, Li X, Wang J, Guo M - PLoS ONE (2015)

Bottom Line: From the 1960s to the 1990s, the downstream flow in the HRB declined as a result of large, artificial changes in the distribution of water and land and a lack of effective water resource management.The results show that the most significant land use/cover change in the middle reaches of the HRB was the continuous expansion of farmland for economic interests.The results of this study can also serve as a reference for the sustainable management of water resources in other arid inland river basins.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Cold and Arid Regions Environmental and Engineering Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 320 Donggang West Road, Lanzhou, 730000, China.

ABSTRACT
The Heihe River Basin (HRB) is a typical arid inland river basin in northwestern China. From the 1960s to the 1990s, the downstream flow in the HRB declined as a result of large, artificial changes in the distribution of water and land and a lack of effective water resource management. Consequently, the ecosystems of the lower reaches of the basin substantially deteriorated. To restore these degraded ecosystems, the Ecological Water Diversion Project (EWDP) was initiated by the Chinese government in 2000. The project led to agricultural and ecological changes in the middle reaches of the basin. In this study, we present three datasets of land use/cover in the middle reaches of the HRB derived from Landsat TM/ETM+ images in 2000, 2007 and 2011. We used these data to investigate changes in land use/cover between 2000 and 2011 and the implications for sustainable water resource management. The results show that the most significant land use/cover change in the middle reaches of the HRB was the continuous expansion of farmland for economic interests. From 2000 to 2011, the farmland area increased by 12.01%. The farmland expansion increased the water resource stress; thus, groundwater was over-extracted and the ecosystem was degraded in particular areas. Both consequences are negative and potentially threaten the sustainability of the middle reaches of the HRB and the entire river basin. Local governments should therefore improve the management of water resources, particularly groundwater management, and should strictly control farmland reclamation. Then, water resources could be ecologically and socioeconomically sustained, and the balance between upstream and downstream water demands could be ensured. The results of this study can also serve as a reference for the sustainable management of water resources in other arid inland river basins.

No MeSH data available.


Run-off flows released between the Yingluoxia and Zhengyixia hydrological stations and the available surface water resources in the middle reaches of the HRB from 1990 to 2011.
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pone.0128960.g003: Run-off flows released between the Yingluoxia and Zhengyixia hydrological stations and the available surface water resources in the middle reaches of the HRB from 1990 to 2011.

Mentions: To address these questions, the relationships between water resource availability and land use/cover change must be analyzed. We first analyzed the runoff measured at the Yingluoxia hydrological station. Between 1945 and 2000, the mean annual runoff observed at the Yingluoxia hydrological station was 16.08 × 108 m3. However, the mean annual runoff observed between 2000 and 2011 was 17.57 × 108 m3, which represents an increase of 9.3% compared with 1945–2000. Only three years between 2000 and 2011 (2000, 2001 and 2004) corresponded to a total runoff of less than 16.08 × 108 m3, whereas the annual runoff for all other years exceeded 16.08×108 m3 (Fig 3). These data suggest that the average runoff from the Heihe River has been greater than the ‘normal’ level since 2000 and has been continuously high since 2005. This conclusion is consistent with the findings that runoff in the upper reaches of the HRB is characterized by high flow due to the warm-wet climate [17–18]. Thus, the surface water resources from the Yingluoxia hydrological station flowing into the middle reaches of the basin have slightly increased.


Land Use/Cover Change in the Middle Reaches of the Heihe River Basin over 2000-2011 and Its Implications for Sustainable Water Resource Management.

Hu X, Lu L, Li X, Wang J, Guo M - PLoS ONE (2015)

Run-off flows released between the Yingluoxia and Zhengyixia hydrological stations and the available surface water resources in the middle reaches of the HRB from 1990 to 2011.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4482701&req=5

pone.0128960.g003: Run-off flows released between the Yingluoxia and Zhengyixia hydrological stations and the available surface water resources in the middle reaches of the HRB from 1990 to 2011.
Mentions: To address these questions, the relationships between water resource availability and land use/cover change must be analyzed. We first analyzed the runoff measured at the Yingluoxia hydrological station. Between 1945 and 2000, the mean annual runoff observed at the Yingluoxia hydrological station was 16.08 × 108 m3. However, the mean annual runoff observed between 2000 and 2011 was 17.57 × 108 m3, which represents an increase of 9.3% compared with 1945–2000. Only three years between 2000 and 2011 (2000, 2001 and 2004) corresponded to a total runoff of less than 16.08 × 108 m3, whereas the annual runoff for all other years exceeded 16.08×108 m3 (Fig 3). These data suggest that the average runoff from the Heihe River has been greater than the ‘normal’ level since 2000 and has been continuously high since 2005. This conclusion is consistent with the findings that runoff in the upper reaches of the HRB is characterized by high flow due to the warm-wet climate [17–18]. Thus, the surface water resources from the Yingluoxia hydrological station flowing into the middle reaches of the basin have slightly increased.

Bottom Line: From the 1960s to the 1990s, the downstream flow in the HRB declined as a result of large, artificial changes in the distribution of water and land and a lack of effective water resource management.The results show that the most significant land use/cover change in the middle reaches of the HRB was the continuous expansion of farmland for economic interests.The results of this study can also serve as a reference for the sustainable management of water resources in other arid inland river basins.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Cold and Arid Regions Environmental and Engineering Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 320 Donggang West Road, Lanzhou, 730000, China.

ABSTRACT
The Heihe River Basin (HRB) is a typical arid inland river basin in northwestern China. From the 1960s to the 1990s, the downstream flow in the HRB declined as a result of large, artificial changes in the distribution of water and land and a lack of effective water resource management. Consequently, the ecosystems of the lower reaches of the basin substantially deteriorated. To restore these degraded ecosystems, the Ecological Water Diversion Project (EWDP) was initiated by the Chinese government in 2000. The project led to agricultural and ecological changes in the middle reaches of the basin. In this study, we present three datasets of land use/cover in the middle reaches of the HRB derived from Landsat TM/ETM+ images in 2000, 2007 and 2011. We used these data to investigate changes in land use/cover between 2000 and 2011 and the implications for sustainable water resource management. The results show that the most significant land use/cover change in the middle reaches of the HRB was the continuous expansion of farmland for economic interests. From 2000 to 2011, the farmland area increased by 12.01%. The farmland expansion increased the water resource stress; thus, groundwater was over-extracted and the ecosystem was degraded in particular areas. Both consequences are negative and potentially threaten the sustainability of the middle reaches of the HRB and the entire river basin. Local governments should therefore improve the management of water resources, particularly groundwater management, and should strictly control farmland reclamation. Then, water resources could be ecologically and socioeconomically sustained, and the balance between upstream and downstream water demands could be ensured. The results of this study can also serve as a reference for the sustainable management of water resources in other arid inland river basins.

No MeSH data available.