A Reconstruction of Irrigated Cropland Extent in China from 2000 to 2019 Using the Synergy of Statistics and Satellite-Based Datasets

Bai, M., Zhou, S., & Tang, T. ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-2867-9241 (2022). A Reconstruction of Irrigated Cropland Extent in China from 2000 to 2019 Using the Synergy of Statistics and Satellite-Based Datasets. Land 11 (10) e1686. 10.3390/land11101686.

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Irrigated agriculture has undergone rapid developments in China, which has greatly increased food production but overexploited water resources as well. Spatial information on irrigated cropland is critical to balance irrigation yield gains against the negative impact on water resources. However, remote-sensing-based maps on irrigated areas with short temporal coverage often suffer from undermined accuracy in humid areas and inconsistency with statistics, which limit their applications in food policy and water management. The following study integrates existing irrigation maps, observed data on irrigated cropping system, and statistics by a synergy approach to map irrigated areas in China from 2000 to 2019. We also incorporate past information on actual irrigation to avoid divergence between observations and statistics from its fluctuation. Afterwards, 614 reference samples across mainland China have been used to validate resultant maps, which show that outperformance was above overall accuracy and Kappa coefficients. Moreover, our maps share a similar spatial pattern with Irrimap-Syn maps rather than remote-sensing-based maps (CCI-LC). Irrigated areas have grown rapidly from 55.42 Mha in 2000 to 71.33 Mha in 2019 but with different growth trends in different regions. Simultaneous large-scale expansion and abandonment occur in the Huang-Huai-Hai Plain and Yangtze River Basin, while the Northwest Inland Region and the Northeast Plain are the two largest net area gains. Rainfed croplands are dominant sources of expansion, followed by pastures, respectively, with over 70% and 20% contributions in total gains. This not only is a shift from rainfed to irrigated systems but also indicates an intensification of agriculture, which might contribute to agricultural drought reductions in the north and wide soil suitability. Other efforts on agricultural sustainability also have been detected, such as geographical shifts from vulnerable to relatively suitable areas, grain for green, cropland protection, and cropland protection in the competition of urbanization.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: irrigated cropland dynamics; synergy mapping approach; land-use transition; China
Research Programs: Biodiversity and Natural Resources (BNR)
Biodiversity and Natural Resources (BNR) > Water Security (WAT)
Depositing User: Luke Kirwan
Date Deposited: 03 Oct 2022 06:51
Last Modified: 03 Oct 2022 06:51
URI: https://pure.iiasa.ac.at/18257

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