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1. chinaXiv:202110.00021 [pdf]

Plant cover as an estimator of above-ground biomass in semi-arid woody vegetation in Northeast Patagonia, Argentina

Subjects: Geosciences >> Geography

The quantification of carbon storage in vegetation biomass is a crucial factor in the estimation and mitigation of CO2 emissions. Globally, arid and semi-arid regions are considered an important carbon sink. However, they have received limited attention and, therefore, it should be a priority to develop tools to quantify biomass at the local and regional scales. Individual plant variables, such as stem diameter and crown area, were reported to be good predictors of individual plant weight. Stand-level variables, such as plant cover and mean height, are also easy-to-measure estimators of above-ground biomass (AGB) in dry regions. In this study, we estimated the AGB in semi-arid woody vegetation in Northeast Patagonia, Argentina. We evaluated whether the AGB at the stand level can be estimated based on plant cover and to what extent the estimation accuracy can be improved by the inclusion of other field-measured structure variables. We also evaluated whether remote sensing technologies can be used to reliably estimate and map the regional mean biomass. For this purpose, we analyzed the relationships between field-measured woody vegetation structure variables and AGB as well as LANDSAT TM-derived variables. We obtained a model-based ratio estimate of regional mean AGB and its standard error. Total plant cover allowed us to obtain a reliable estimation of local AGB, and no better fit was attained by the inclusion of other structure variables. The stand-level plant cover ranged between 18.7% and 95.2% and AGB between about 2.0 and 70.8 Mg/hm2. AGB based on total plant cover was well estimated from LANDSAT TM bands 2 and 3, which facilitated a model-based ratio estimate of the regional mean AGB (approximately 12.0 Mg/hm2) and its sampling error (about 30.0%). The mean AGB of woody vegetation can greatly contribute to carbon storage in semi-arid lands. Thus, plant cover estimation by remote sensing images could be used to obtain regional estimates and map biomass, as well as to assess and monitor the impact of land-use change on the carbon balance, for arid and semi-arid regions.

submitted time 2021-10-11 From cooperative journals:《Journal of Arid Land》 Hits2119Downloads61 Comment 0

2. chinaXiv:202101.00075 [pdf]

Development of a large-scale remote sensing ecological index in arid areas and its application in the Aral Sea Basin

WANG Jie; LIU Dongwei; MA Jiali; CHENG Yingnan; WANG Lixin
Subjects: Geosciences >> Geography

The Aral Sea Basin in Central Asia is an important geographical environment unit in the center of Eurasia. It is of great significance to the ecological protection and sustainable development of Central Asia to carry out dynamic monitoring and effective evaluation of the eco-environmental quality of the Aral Sea Basin. In this study, the arid remote sensing ecological index (ARSEI) for large-scale arid areas was developed, which coupled the information of the greenness index, the salinity index, the humidity index, the heat index, and the land degradation index of arid areas. The ARSEI was used to monitor and evaluate the eco-environmental quality of the Aral Sea Basin from 2000 to 2019. The results show that the greenness index, the humidity index and the land degradation index had a positive impact on the quality of the ecological environment in the Aral Sea Basin, while the salinity index and the heat index exerted a negative impact on the quality of the ecological environment. The eco-environmental quality of the Aral Sea Basin demonstrated a trend of initial improvement, followed by deterioration, and finally further improvement. The spatial variation of these changes was significant. From 2000 to 2019, grassland and wasteland (saline alkali land and sandy land) in the central and western parts of the basin had the worst ecological environment quality. The areas with poor ecological environment quality are mainly distributed in rivers, wetlands, and cultivated land around lakes. During the period from 2000 to 2019, except for the surrounding areas of the Aral Sea, the ecological environment quality in other areas of the Aral Sea Basin has been improved in general. The correlation coefficients between the change in the eco-environmental quality and the heat index and between the change in the eco-environmental quality and the humidity index were –0.593 and 0.524, respectively. Climate conditions and human activities have led to different combinations of heat and humidity changes in the eco-environmental quality of the Aral Sea Basin. However, human activities had a greater impact. The ARSEI can quantitatively and intuitively reflect the scale and causes of large-scale and long-time period changes of the eco-environmental quality in arid areas; it is very suitable for the study of the eco-environmental quality in arid areas.

submitted time 2021-01-22 From cooperative journals:《Journal of Arid Land》 Hits976Downloads579 Comment 0

3. chinaXiv:202010.00026 [pdf]

Land degradation sensitivity assessment and convergence analysis in Korla of Xinjiang, China

DING Jinchen; CHEN Yunzhi; WANG Xiaoqin; CAO Meiqin
Subjects: Geosciences >> History of Geosciences

Land degradation has a major impact on environmental and socio-economic sustainability. Scientific methods are necessary to monitor the risk of land degradation. In this study, the environmental sensitive area index (ESAI) was utilized to assess land degradation sensitivity and convergence analysis in Korla, a typical oasis city in Xinjiang of China, which is located on the northeast border of the Tarim Basin. A total of 18 indicators depicting soil, climate, vegetation, and management qualities were used to illustrate spatial-temporal patterns of land degradation sensitivity from 1994 to 2018. We investigated the causes of spatial convergence and divergence based on the Ordinary Least Squares (OLS) and Geographically Weighted Regression (GWR) models. The results show that the branch of the Tianshan Mountains and oasis plain had a low sensitivity to land degradation, while the Tarim Basin had a high risk of land degradation. More than two-thirds of the study area can be categorized as "critical" sensitivity classes. The largest percentage (32.6%) of fragile classes was observed for 2006. There was no significant change in insensitive or low-sensitivity areas, which accounted for less than 0.4% of the entire observation period. The ESAI of the four time periods (1994–1998, 1998–2006, 2006–2010, and 2010–2018) formed a series of convergence patterns. The convergence patterns of 1994–1998 and 1998–2006 can be explained by the government's efforts to "Returning Farmland to Forests" and other governance projects. In 2006–2010, the construction of afforested work intensified, but industrial development and human activities affected the convergence pattern. The pattern of convergence in most regions between 2010 and 2018 can be attributed to the government's implementation of a series of key ecological protection projects, which led to a decrease in sensitivity to land degradation. The results of this study altogether suggest that the ESAI convergence analysis is an effective early warning method for land degradation sensitivity.

submitted time 2020-10-20 From cooperative journals:《Journal of Arid Land》 Hits2193Downloads679 Comment 0

4. chinaXiv:202010.00038 [pdf]

Glacier variations and their response to climate change in an arid inland river basin of Northwest China

ZHOU,Zuhao; HAN,Ning; LIU,Jiajia; YAN,Ziqi; XU,Chongyu; CAI,Jingya; SHANG,Yizi; ZHU,Jiasong
Subjects: Geosciences >> History of Geosciences

Glaciers are a critical freshwater resource of river recharge in arid areas around the world. In recent decades, glaciers have shown evidence of retreat due to climate change, and the accelerated ablation of glaciers and associated impacts on water resources have received widespread attention. Glacier variations result from climate change, so they can serve as an indicator of climate change. Considering the climatic differences in different elevation ranges, it is worthwhile to explore whether different responses exist between glacier area and air temperature in each elevation zone. In this study, we selected a typical arid inland river basin (Sugan Lake Basin) in the western Qilian Mountains of Northwest China to analyze the glacier variations and their response to climate change. The glacier area data from 1989 to 2016 were delineated using Landsat Thematic Mapper (TM), Enhanced TM+ (ETM+) and Operational Land Imager (OLI) images. We compared the relationships between glacier area and air temperature at seven meteorological stations in the glacier-covered areas and in the Sugan Lake Basin, and further analyzed the relationship between glacier area and mean air temperature of the glacier surfaces in July–August in the elevation range of 4700–5500 m a.s.l. by the linear regression method and correlation analysis. In addition, based on the linear regression relationship established between glacier area and air temperature in each elevation zone, we predicted glacier areas under future climate scenarios during the periods of 2046–2065 and 2081–2100. The results indicate that the glaciers experienced a remarkable shrinkage from 1989 to 2016 with a shrinkage rate of –1.61 km2/a (–0.5%/a), and the rising temperature is the decisive factor dominating glacial retreat; there is a significant negative linear correlation between glacier area and mean air temperature of the glacier surfaces in July–August in each elevation zone from 1989 to 2016. The variations in glaciers are far less sensitive to changes in precipitation than to changes in air temperature. Due to the influence of climate and topographic conditions, the distribution of glacier area and the rate of glacier ablation first increased and then decreased in different elevation zones. The trend in glacier shrinkage will continue because air temperature will continue to increase in the future, and the result of glacier retreat in each elevation zone will be slightly slower than that in the entire study area. Quantitative glacier research can more accurately reflect the response of glacier variations to climate change, and the regression relationship can be used to predict the areas of glaciers under future climate scenarios. These conclusions can offer effective references for assessing glacier variations and their response to climate change in arid inland river basins in Northwest China as well as other similar regions in the world.

submitted time 2020-10-20 From cooperative journals:《Journal of Arid Land》 Hits719Downloads417 Comment 0

5. chinaXiv:201909.00010 [pdf]

Determining the spatial distribution of soil properties using the environmental covariates and multivariate statistical analysis: a case study in semi-arid regions of Iran

Subjects: Geosciences >> Geography

Natural soil-forming factors such as landforms, parent materials or biota lead to high variability in soil properties. However, there is not enough research quantifying which environmental factor(s) can be the most relevant to predicting soil properties at the catchment scale in semi-arid areas. Thus, this research aims to investigate the ability of multivariate statistical analyses to distinguish which soil properties follow a clear spatial pattern conditioned by specific environmental characteristics in a semi-arid region of Iran. To achieve this goal, we digitized parent materials and landforms by recent orthophotography. Also, we extracted ten topographical attributes and five remote sensing variables from a digital elevation model (DEM) and the Landsat Enhanced Thematic Mapper (ETM), respectively. These factors were contrasted for 334 soil samples (depth of 0–30 cm). Cluster analysis and soil maps reveal that Cluster 1 comprises of limestones, massive limestones and mixed deposits of conglomerates with low soil organic carbon (SOC) and clay contents, and Cluster 2 is composed of soils that originated from quaternary and early quaternary parent materials such as terraces, alluvial fans, lake deposits, and marls or conglomerates that register the highest SOC content and the lowest sand and silt contents. Further, it is confirmed that soils with the highest SOC and clay contents are located in wetlands, lagoons, alluvial fans and piedmonts, while soils with the lowest SOC and clay contents are located in dissected alluvial fans, eroded hills, rock outcrops and steep hills. The results of principal component analysis using the remote sensing data and topographical attributes identify five main components, which explain 73.3% of the total variability of soil properties. Environmental factors such as hillslope morphology and all of the remote sensing variables can largely explain SOC variability, but no significant correlation is found for soil texture and calcium carbonate equivalent contents. Therefore, we conclude that SOC can be considered as the best-predicted soil property in semi-arid regions.

submitted time 2019-08-30 From cooperative journals:《Journal of Arid Land》 Hits10136Downloads948 Comment 0

6. chinaXiv:201810.00181 [pdf]

Evaluating and modeling the spatiotemporal pattern of regional-scale salinized land expansion in highly sensitive shoreline landscape of southeastern Iran

Subjects: Geosciences >> History of Geosciences

Taking an area of about 2.3×104 km2 of southeastern Iran, this study aims to detect and predict regional-scale salt-affected lands. Three sets of Landsat images, each set containing 4 images for 1986, 2000, and 2015 were acquired as the main source of data. Radiometric, atmospheric and cutline blending methods were used to improve the quality of images and help better classify salinized land areas under the support vector machine method. A set of landscape metrics was also employed to detect the spatial pattern of salinized land expansion from 1986 to 2015. Four factors including distance to sea, distance to sea water channels, slope, and elevation were identified as the main contributing factors to land salinization. These factors were then integrated using the multi-criteria evaluation (MCE) procedure to generate land sensitivity map to salinization and also to calibrate the cellular-automata (CA) Markov chain (CA-Markov) model for simulation of salt-affected lands up to 2030, 2040 and 2050. The results of this study showed a dramatic dispersive expansion of salinized land from 7.7 % to 12.7% of the total study area from 1986 to 2015. The majority of areas prone to salinization and the highest sensitivity of land to salinization was found to be in the southeastern parts of the region. The result of the MCE-informed CA-Markov model revealed that 20.3% of the study area is likely to be converted to salinized lands by 2050. The findings of this research provided a view of the magnitude and direction of salinized land expansion in a past-to-future time period which should be considered in future land development strategies.

submitted time 2018-10-29 From cooperative journals:《Journal of Arid Land》 Hits4064Downloads1179 Comment 0

7. chinaXiv:201703.00287 [pdf]

Passive submillimeter-wave imaging demonstrated by a two-element interferometer

Han, Dong-Hao; Liu, Hao; Zhang, De-Hai; Meng, Jin; Zhao, Xin; Zhang, Ying; Wu, Ji
Subjects: Geosciences >> Space Physics

In this paper, an SMMW interferometric radiometer concept is demonstrated by a two-element interferometer with dedicated high accuracy SMMW devices. Point-source calibration method is introduced in order to reduce instrument errors. Interference fringes and point target images are presented by this SMMW interferometer. The linear phase error of the interference fringes is less than 2?and the angular resolution is better than 0.57? The measured performance characteristics of the two-element interferometer are consistent with the theoretical analysis. This interferometer demonstrates a new method for passive SMMW remote sensing. ?2016, Science Press. All right reserved.

submitted time 2017-03-10 Hits2233Downloads1329 Comment 0

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