Long-term hydrological response to reforestation in a large watershed in southeastern China

Shuo Li, Ming Xu, Bo Sun

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

15 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The long-term hydrological response to reforestation is critical to regional water management, especially in areas where large-scale reforestation has been practiced. In this study, we investigated the long-term hydrological response to reforestation in the 579km2 basin in southeastern China through ground-based monitoring of water yield, sedimentation, vegetation cover and climate in the basin. The vegetation dynamics were also examined by remote sensing data (MSS, Landsat and AVHRR NDVI). We found that forest cover increased 23% or 13593ha from 1975 to 2002. Meanwhile, annual water yield decreased 86-88mm from 1971-1983 (i.e. pre-reforestation) to 1984-2009 (i.e. post-reforestation). These decreases were significant statistically according to both regression and double mass analyses. Time series analysis demonstrated that there was a clear decline in annual sediment yield and an increase in annual evapotranspiration (ET) over the period from 1971 to 2009. We concluded that reforestation could significantly reduce annual water yield and sediment yield in the basin because of the forest cover change and forest growth. This conclusion is consistent with findings from widely paired-watershed studies and literatures published on the impact of reforestation in large watersheds. Our results also have important strategic implications and provide insight into more sustainable forest management practices for the future.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5573-5582
Number of pages10
JournalHydrological Processes
Volume28
Issue number22
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 30 2014

Fingerprint

hydrological response
reforestation
watershed
water yield
sediment yield
forest cover
basin
Landsat multispectral scanner
vegetation dynamics
time series analysis
AVHRR
NDVI
vegetation cover
forest management
evapotranspiration
water management
management practice
sedimentation
remote sensing
climate

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Water Science and Technology

Keywords

  • Hydrological response
  • Large watershed
  • Reforestation
  • Water yield

Cite this

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Long-term hydrological response to reforestation in a large watershed in southeastern China. / Li, Shuo; Xu, Ming; Sun, Bo.

In: Hydrological Processes, Vol. 28, No. 22, 30.10.2014, p. 5573-5582.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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