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Modeling the climatic effects of the land use/cover change in eastern China

Author:
Mingna Wang  Zhe Xiong  Xiaodong Yan  


Journal:
Physics and Chemistry of the Earth, Parts A/B/C


Issue Date:
2015


Abstract(summary):

Highlights • We examine the contribution of actual LUCC to the climate change in eastern China. • The latest actual land cover datasets are employed. • Three large scale LUCC areas are simulated for a long time with high resolution. Abstract This study aims to quantify the contribution of land use/cover change (LUCC) during the last three decades to climate change conditions in eastern China. The effects of farmland expansion in Northeast China, grassland degradation in Northwest China, and deforestation in South China were simulated using the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model in addition to the latest actual land cover datasets. The simulated results show that when forestland is converted to farmland, the air temperature decreased owing to an increase in surface albedo in Northeast China. The climatic effect of grassland degradation on the Loess Plateau was insignificant because of the negligible difference in albedo between grassland and cropland. In South China, deforestation generally led to a decrease in temperature. Furthermore, the temperature decrease caused by the increase in albedo counteracted the warming effects of the evapotranspiration decrease, so the summer temperature change was not significant in South China. Excluding the effects of urbanization in the North China Plain, the LUCC effects across the entire region of East China presented an overall cooling trend. However, the variation in temperature scale and magnitude was less in summer than that in winter. This result is due mainly to the cooling caused by the increase in albedo offset partly by the increase in temperature caused by the decrease in evaporation in summer. Summer precipitation showed a trend of increasing–decreasing–increasing from southeast to northwest after LUCC, which was induced mainly by the decrease in surface roughness and cyclone circulations appearing northwest of Northeast China, in the middle of the Loess Plateau, and in Yunnan province at 700 hPa after forests were converted into farmland. All results will be instructive for understanding the influence of LUCC on regional climate and future land planning in practice.


Page:
97-97


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