Chin J Plan Ecolo ›› 2008, Vol. 32 ›› Issue (1): 65-72.doi: 10.3773/j.issn.1005-264x.2008.01.007

• Research Articles • Previous Articles     Next Articles

TERRESTRIAL ECOSYSTEM PRODUCTIVITY AND CARRYING CAPACITY IN NORTHEAST CHINA

ZHOU Guang-Sheng1,2; YUAN Wen-Ping2; ZHOU Li2; ZHENG Yuan-Run2   

  1. 1Institute of Atmospheric Environment, China Meteorological Administration , Shenyang 110016, China; 2 Key Laboratory of Vegetation and Environmental Change, Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100093, China
  • Online:2008-01-30 Published:2008-01-30
  • Contact: ZHOU Guang-Sheng

Abstract: Aims Rapidly growing population and environmental issues have been key problems for the living and sustainable development
of humans. In order to provide policy-makers with a theoretical reference, it is urgent to know how terrestrial ecosystem
productivity and its carrying capacity in Northeast China will respond to future climatic change. My objective was to
simulate net primary productivity (NPP) of terrestrial ecosystems in Northeast China and their carrying capacities, as well
as their responses to climatic change.
Methods Values of NPP of the different terrestrial ecosystems were simulated by a natural vegetation NPP model (Zhou &
Zhang, 1995) and an agricultural NPP model (Zheng et al., 1997), in terms of land use (forest, agriculture, grassland and
wetland) data with a spatial resolution of 10 km×10 km and daily meteorological data from 1980 to 2002 as well as the
projected climatic scenarios for 2020, 2050, 2070 and 2100. Ecosystem carrying capacities were given by the carrying capacity
model (Cao, 1993) and NPP of agricultural, grassland and wetland ecosystems. 
Important findings Mean annual temperature increased, and annual precipitation decreased in Northeast China from 1980 to
2002. Total mean annual terrestrial ecosystem productivity during these 23 years was 3.52×1011 kg DM•a-1. Total mean annual
terrestrial ecosystem productivities for forest, agriculture, grassland and wetland ecosystems were 1.53×1011, 4.55×1010,
1.07×1011 and 4.63×1010 kg DM•a-1 , respectively. Mean annual terrestrial ecosystem productivities for forest,
agriculture, grassland and wetland ecosystems were 5.73×103, 1.84×103, 5.64×103 and 5.55×103 kg DM•hm-2•a-1. Total mean
annual carrying capacities from 1980 to 2002 were 2.61×108, 2.15×108 and 1.77×108 for well-off, comparatively well-off
and surplus consumption levels, respectively. When 350×108 kg commercial grain export from Northeast China was considered,
total mean annual carrying capacities from 1980 to 2002 were 1.70×108, 1.40×108 and 1.15×108 for the above three
consumption levels, respectively. The population of Northeast China is about 1.07×108 at present. It implied that the
population in Northeast China should be controlled in the future, in order to ensure the surplus consumption level and 350×
108 kg commercial grain export. Simulated total mean annual carrying capacities of Northeast China in 2020, 2050, 2070 and
2100 were 2.73×108, 2.25×108 and 1.85×108;2. 88×108, 2.38×108 and 1.95×108; 3.03×108, 2.49×108 and 2.05×108; and
3.09×108 , 2.55×108 and 2. 09×108 for the three consumption levels, respectively, in terms of the climatic scenarios for
the future. This study provides fundamental information for land resources and social sustainable development.

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