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Land use change and climate variation in the Three Gorges Reservoir Catchment from 2000 to 2015 based on the Google Earth Engine

Hao, B., Ma, M., Li, S., Li, Q., Hao, D., Huang, J., Ge, Z., Yang, H. and Han, X. (2019) Land use change and climate variation in the Three Gorges Reservoir Catchment from 2000 to 2015 based on the Google Earth Engine. Sensors, 19 (9). 2118. ISSN 1424-8220

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To link to this item DOI: 10.3390/s19092118

Abstract/Summary

Possible environmental change and ecosystem degradation have received increasing attention since the construction of Three Gorges Reservoir Catchment (TGRC) in China. The advanced Google Earth Engine (GEE) cloud-based platform and the large number of Geosciences and Remote Sensing datasets archived in GEE were used to analyze the land use and land cover change (LULCC) and climate variation in TGRC. GlobeLand30 data were used to evaluate the spatial land dynamics from 2000 to 2010 and Landsat 8 Operational Land Imager (OLI) images were applied for land use in 2015. The interannual variations in the Land Surface Temperature (LST) and seasonally integrated normalized difference vegetation index (SINDVI) were estimated using Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) products. The climate factors including air temperature, precipitation and evapotranspiration were investigated based on the data from the Global Land Data Assimilation System (GLDAS). The results indicated that from 2000 to 2015, the cultivated land and grassland decreased by 2.05% and 6.02%, while the forest, wetland, artificial surface, shrub land and waterbody increased by 3.64%, 0.94%, 0.87%, 1.17% and 1.45%, respectively. The SINDVI increased by 3.209 in the period of 2000-2015, while the LST decreased by 0.253 °C from 2001 to 2015. The LST showed an increasing trend primarily in urbanized area, with a decreasing trend mainly in forest area. In particular, Chongqing City had the highest LST during the research period. A marked decrease in SINDVI occurred primarily in urbanized areas. Good vegetation areas were primarily located in the eastern part of the TGRC, such as Wuxi County, Wushan County, and Xingshan County. During the 2000–2015 period, the air temperature, precipitation and evapotranspiration rose by 0.0678 °C/a, 1.0844 mm/a, and 0.4105 mm/a, respectively. The climate change in the TGRC was influenced by LULCC, but the effect was limited. What is more, the climate change was affected by regional climate change in Southwest China. Marked changes in land use have occurred in the TGRC, and they have resulted in changes in the LST and SINDVI. There was a significantly negative relationship between LST and SINDVI in most parts of the TGRC, especially in expanding urban areas and growing forest areas. Our study highlighted the importance of environmental protection, particularly proper management of land use, for sustainable development in the catchment.

Item Type:Article
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Faculty of Science > School of Archaeology, Geography and Environmental Science > Department of Geography and Environmental Science
ID Code:84309
Publisher:MDPI

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