Changes of forestland in China's coastal areas (1996-2015): regional variations and driving forces

Zhang, X., Yao, J. , Wang, J. and Sila-Nowicka, K. (2020) Changes of forestland in China's coastal areas (1996-2015): regional variations and driving forces. Land Use Policy, 99, 105018. (doi: 10.1016/j.landusepol.2020.105018)

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Coastal forests play a critical role in the defence of natural disasters like typhoons and tsunamis. The deforestation and forest degradation due to rapid urbanization has presented great challenges (e.g. debris flows and floods) to China’s coastal areas. Using a unique national land-use survey dataset and geographical information system (GIS)-based spatial analytics, including local Moran’s I and geographically weighted regression (GWR), this paper investigates the regional variations and associated driving forces of forestland changes in China’s coastal areas across three periods: 1996−2000, 2000–2008 and 2009–2015. The results suggest that the forestland has generally increased until 2008 and has decreased since 2009. Particularly, some counties in the south coast have higher degree of forestland loss during 1996–2008 and the growth of forestland after 2009 was only found in a few counties in the north and east coast. Also, the results indicate that the initial proportion of forestland in each period and the changes of arable-land have significant positive associations with the forestland changes across all the three periods, where the former mainly affects the northern coast while the latter has a primary influence in the southern coast. The findings suggest that government policies for increasing forestland such as the “Grain for Green” project were highly effective in China’s coastal areas before 2008 but have shown less impact ever since. This research provides insights into the dynamics of forestland in China’s coastal areas and can assist with future decision-making regarding forest resources protection and management.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:The authors are grateful for the financial support from the National Natural Science Foundation of China (41871203) and the project of High-level Talents Import Plan from Wuhan University.
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Yao, Dr Jing and Sila-Nowicka, Ms Katarzyna
Creator Roles:
Yao, J.Conceptualization, Methodology, Writing – original draft, Supervision
Sila-Nowicka, K.Formal analysis, Visualization, Data curation, Writing – review and editing
Authors: Zhang, X., Yao, J., Wang, J., and Sila-Nowicka, K.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences
College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Urban Studies
Journal Name:Land Use Policy
ISSN (Online):1873-5754
Published Online:26 August 2020
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2020 Elsevier Ltd.
First Published:First published in Land Use Policy 99: 105018
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the publisher copyright policy

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