Scientia Agricultura Sinica ›› 2020, Vol. 53 ›› Issue (12): 2435-2449.doi: 10.3864/j.issn.0578-1752.2020.12.011


Spatial-Temporal Changes of Newly Cultivated Land in Northern China and Its Zoning Based on Driving Factors

WANG MingLei1,2,SHI WenJiao1,2()   

  1. 1 Key Laboratory of Land Surface Pattern and Simulation, Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, CAS, Beijing 100101;
    2 College of Resources and Environment, University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049
  • Received:2019-08-26 Online:2020-06-16 Published:2020-06-25
  • Contact: WenJiao SHI


【Objective】 The spatial and temporal change pattern of newly cultivated land is affected by both climate change and human activities. It is important to clarify the spatial and temporal change pattern of newly cultivated land and its driving factors to ensure the sustainable development of cultivated land resources and agriculture. 【Method】 Based on the data of newly cultivated land in north China of 1980s-1990s, 1990s-2000s and 2000s-2010s, the spatial-temporal changes of newly cultivated land in north China were analyzed by using gravity model and regional statistics; Based on the climate data of the three times, we calculated the active accumulated temperature (≥10℃, AAT10) and the standardized precipitation evapotranspiration index (SPEI), and analyzed the driving effect of climatic factors on cultivated land reclamation; Based on the socio-economic statistics since the 1980s, the paper analyzed the promotion of human factors on cultivated land reclamation by combining spatial superposition model and regional statistical model; Based on the combination of climatic and human factors and the method of geographical subdivision, the new cultivated land in north China was subdivided. 【Result】 The center of gravity of new cultivated land in northern China has shifted from northeast to northwest; the most cultivated land reclamation existed in warm and dry climate, but the proportion of cultivated land reclamation occurring in warm and humid climate conditions was gradually increasing; the increase of agricultural population, the advancement of agricultural technology and the influence of national policies provided necessary foundation for the expansion of cultivated land resources in Northeast China and Xinjiang. Abundant cultivated land reserve resources and flat terrain conditions in the Xinjiang, Heilongjiang, Jilin and other regions provided a possibility for land reclamation; based on the climate and human activities factors, the northern China was divided into seven regions, which included the zone of grass to cropland due to climate in Northeast, the zone of forest and grass to cropland due to climate and human activities in north region of Northeast of China, the zone of paddy field to dry land due to climate and human activities in middle region of Northeast, the zone of forest and grass to cropland due to climate and human activities in the North, the zone of ecological restoration dues to human activities in the loess plateau, the zone of unused land to cropland due to human activities in the northwest region, and zone of the oasis agriculture due to human activities in Xinjiang. 【Conclusion】 Since the 1980s, the spatial and temporal patterns of the new cultivated land in northern China showed obvious differences. The warm and dry climate did not become the limiting factor of cultivated land reclamation, but the wetter climate promoted the cultivated land reclamation to some extent. The increase of agricultural population, the progress of agriculture and the influence of national policies played an important role in cultivated land reclamation.

Key words: Northern China, new cultivated land, land use change, climate change, driving factor

Fig. 1

Types of land use in Northern China, 2015"

Fig. 2

Changes in the center of gravity of new cultivated land in Northern China since 1980s"

Table 1

The annual change area (hm2) and rate (%) of new cultivated land in north China since the 1980s"

1980s-1990s 1990s-2000s 2000s-2010s
Annual change area
Annual change rate
Annual change area
Annual change rate
Annual change area
Annual change rate
黑龙江Heilongjiang 197680 2.23 39114 0.41 19859 0.08
吉林Jilin 54486 1.38 10699 0.27 9227 0.08
辽宁Liaoning 31046 0.90 4156 0.10 689 0.01
内蒙古Inner Mongolia 162775 3.28 44934 0.61 20169 0.14
山西Shanxi 4542 0.12 1055 0.02 769 0.01
陕西Shaanxi 7040 0.20 3065 0.10 5907 0.10
宁夏Ningxia 24747 3.11 5677 0.44 7205 0.32
甘肃Gansu 11392 0.33 15751 0.46 10680 0.15
青海Qinghai 3347 0.58 1696 0.25 271 0.02
新疆Xinjiang 114009 3.66 154587 4.52 210801 2.56
合计Sum 611065 1.68 280735 0.68 285578 0.64

Fig. 3

Structural changes of different sources of newly cultivated land in Northern China"

Fig. 4

The spatial distribution of the climatic factors in the areas into which the cultivated land was transferred and the percentages of new cultivated land area in different climatic zones have been increased in since 1980s"

Fig. 5

Trends of total population and agriculture population in Northern China since the 1980s"

Fig. 6

The effective irrigation area, total power of agricultural machinery, construction of water conservancy facilities and cultivated land in each period in Northern China increased compared with that in 1990 since 1980s"

Fig. 7

Zoning of newly cultivated land in Northern China based on driving factors"

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