中国地理科学 ›› 2020, Vol. 30 ›› Issue (4): 557-571.doi: 10.1007/s11769-020-1135-y

• 论文 •    

Different Responses of Vegetation to Frozen Ground Degradation in the Source Region of the Yellow River from 1980 to 2018

WANG Rui, DONG Zhibao, ZHOU Zhengchao   

  1. School of Geography and Tourism, Shaanxi Normal University, Xi'an 710119, China
  • 收稿日期:2019-08-14 发布日期:2020-06-23
  • 通讯作者: DONG Zhibao. E-mail:zbdong@snnu.edu.cn E-mail:zbdong@snnu.edu.cn
  • 基金资助:
    Under the auspices of National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 41807061, 41930641, 41977061), Postdoctoral Science Foundation of China (No. 2018M633454), Team Building Research Funds for the Central Universities of China (No. GK202001003)

Different Responses of Vegetation to Frozen Ground Degradation in the Source Region of the Yellow River from 1980 to 2018

WANG Rui, DONG Zhibao, ZHOU Zhengchao   

  1. School of Geography and Tourism, Shaanxi Normal University, Xi'an 710119, China
  • Received:2019-08-14 Published:2020-06-23
  • Contact: DONG Zhibao. E-mail:zbdong@snnu.edu.cn E-mail:zbdong@snnu.edu.cn
  • Supported by:
    Under the auspices of National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 41807061, 41930641, 41977061), Postdoctoral Science Foundation of China (No. 2018M633454), Team Building Research Funds for the Central Universities of China (No. GK202001003)

摘要: Frozen ground degradation under a warming climate profoundly influences the growth of alpine vegetation in the source region of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. This study investigated spatiotemporal variations in the frozen ground distribution, the active layer thickness (ALT) of permafrost (PF) soil and the soil freeze depth (SFD) in seasonally frozen soil from 1980 to 2018 using the temperature at the top of permafrost (TTOP) model and Stefan equation. We compared the effects of these variations on vegetation growth among different frozen ground types and vegetation types in the source region of the Yellow River (SRYR). The results showed that approximately half of the PF area (20.37% of the SRYR) was projected to degrade into seasonally frozen ground (SFG) during the past four decades; furthermore, the areal average ALT increased by 3.47 cm/yr, and the areal average SFD decreased by 0.93 cm/yr from 1980 to 2018. Accordingly, the growing season Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) presented an increasing trend of 0.002/10yr, and the increase rate and proportion of areas with NDVI increase were largest in the transition zone where PF degraded to SFG (the PF to SFG zone). A correlation analysis indicated that variations in ALT and SFD in the SRYR were significantly correlated with increases of NDVI in the growing season. However, a rapid decrease in SFD (< -1.4 cm/10yr) could have reduced the soil moisture and, thus, decreased the NDVI. The NDVI for most vegetation types exhibited a significant positive correlation with ALT and a negative correlation with SFD. However, the steppe NDVI exhibited a significant negative correlation with the SFD in the PF to SFG zone but a positive correlation in the SFG zone, which was mainly limited by water condition because of different change rates of the SFD.

关键词: permafrost, seasonally frozen ground, vegetation dynamics, climate change, source region of the Yellow River

Abstract: Frozen ground degradation under a warming climate profoundly influences the growth of alpine vegetation in the source region of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau. This study investigated spatiotemporal variations in the frozen ground distribution, the active layer thickness (ALT) of permafrost (PF) soil and the soil freeze depth (SFD) in seasonally frozen soil from 1980 to 2018 using the temperature at the top of permafrost (TTOP) model and Stefan equation. We compared the effects of these variations on vegetation growth among different frozen ground types and vegetation types in the source region of the Yellow River (SRYR). The results showed that approximately half of the PF area (20.37% of the SRYR) was projected to degrade into seasonally frozen ground (SFG) during the past four decades; furthermore, the areal average ALT increased by 3.47 cm/yr, and the areal average SFD decreased by 0.93 cm/yr from 1980 to 2018. Accordingly, the growing season Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) presented an increasing trend of 0.002/10yr, and the increase rate and proportion of areas with NDVI increase were largest in the transition zone where PF degraded to SFG (the PF to SFG zone). A correlation analysis indicated that variations in ALT and SFD in the SRYR were significantly correlated with increases of NDVI in the growing season. However, a rapid decrease in SFD (< -1.4 cm/10yr) could have reduced the soil moisture and, thus, decreased the NDVI. The NDVI for most vegetation types exhibited a significant positive correlation with ALT and a negative correlation with SFD. However, the steppe NDVI exhibited a significant negative correlation with the SFD in the PF to SFG zone but a positive correlation in the SFG zone, which was mainly limited by water condition because of different change rates of the SFD.

Key words: permafrost, seasonally frozen ground, vegetation dynamics, climate change, source region of the Yellow River