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Land-use/land-cover change and ecosystem service provision in China

Song, Wei, Deng, Xiangzheng
The Science of the total environment 2017 v.576 pp. 705-719
ecosystem services, issues and policy, land use change, China
As a result of economics and policy, land-use/land-cover change (LUCC) in China has undergone a series of complicated changes over the past three decades. However, the effects of LUCCs on ecosystem service values (ESVs) have never been previously assessed at the national scale. Thus, on the basis of three Chinese LUCC maps from 1988, 2000, and 2008, we examined changes in land-use/land-cover and consequent ESVs using a value transfer method. We found that ESVs decreased by 0.45% and 0.10% during the periods 1988–2000 and 2000–2008, respectively, and that ESV changes in China during the period 2000–2008 were relatively moderate compared to the rest of the world over a similar period. The ESVs for provision, regulation, support, and culture decreased by 0.19%, 0.48%, 0.43%, and 0.45%, respectively, during the period 1988–2000, while they decreased by 0.11%, 0.09%, 0.14%, and 0.04%, respectively, during the period 2000–2008. We also developed an elasticity indicator to assess responses in ESV change relative to LUCCs. Results of this analysis show that 1% of land conversion in China resulted in 0.15% and 0.10% average changes in ESVs during the two periods, respectively.