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Landscape change and the driving forces in source area of Shule River in arid northwest China



Being source of Inland River in arid areas, the mountain landscape pattern influence the hydrological process, and play an important role in ecological balance. It is essential for us to understand landscape pattern dynamic changes and the driving forces to estimate the characteristics of development the landscape pattern and water resource. However, knowledge of the grassland degradation in vertical variation and the dominant factors of in arid mountain areas are largely limited. On the basis of Landsat TM images and DEM data, the changes of landscape pattern and the driving factors were analyzed in different altitude zones in the source area of Shule River. The results indicated that: The grassland in the altitude zone of 3800 3900 m degraded markedly obvious, and the altitude where the grassland degenerated had gone upwards slightly. The most efficient driving force of grassland degradation is that the permafrost degradation caused by rising temperature.


  • arid mountain areas
  • atmospheric temperature
  • climate warming
  • degradation
  • DEM data
  • digital elevation models
  • Earth
  • ecological balance
  • Ecology
  • geophysical image processing
  • grassland degradation
  • hydrological process
  • hydrology
  • inland river
  • Landsat TM images
  • Landscape pattern
  • landscape pattern dynamic changes
  • mountain landscape pattern
  • northwest China
  • permafrost
  • permafrost degradation
  • Remote sensing
  • rivers
  • Satellites
  • Shule River
  • soil
  • topography (Earth)
  • Vegetation
  • vegetation mapping
  • water resource
  • water resources


Yang G, Ye B, Xie X, Zhou L. Landscape change and the driving forces in source area of Shule River in arid northwest China[C]//Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium (IGARSS), 2011 IEEE International. 2011: 664–667. doi:10.1109/IGARSS.2011.6049217

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