Sensors 2008, 8(4), 2223-2239; doi:10.3390/s8042223
Article

Rapid Urbanization and Implications for Flood Risk Management in Hinterland of the Pearl River Delta, China: The Foshan Study

Received: 31 December 2007; Accepted: 7 March 2008 / Published: 28 March 2008
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sensors for Urban Environmental Monitoring)
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to examine the linkage between rapid urbanization and flood risk in the hinterlands of the Pearl River Delta, P.R. China. Foshan, a typical hinterland city in the Pearl River Delta region, was selected as a case study. Land use and cover change in Foshan during 1988-2003 was analyzed using remote sensing and geographic information system (GIS) techniques. Furthermore, analysis on historical hydrological data during 1962-2005 was performed. Results show that rapid urbanization has resulted in losses of farmland, forest and shrub since 1988. In addition, in order to compensate or offset the loss of farmland due to rapid urban expansion, more than 30 % of the forest and 20 % of the shrub areas were transformed into farmlands. Inevitably, both the urban and agricultural lands increased the pressure on the drainage systems. Furthermore, over the past decades human activities such as dredging up the floodways, excavating sand and building water facilities in the rivers, significantly changed the hydrological conditions, and therefore impaired the rivers’ capacity to buffer floods. Lessons from the Foshan case implied that, in addition to natural processes, human activities driven by socio-economic factors should be considered responsible for the recently increasing level of flood risks. Both economically and environmentally, it is irrational and impractical to encourage encroachment of lands vulnerable to floods. It is also realistic and urgent to effectively prevent and control the adverse ecological consequences of urbanization and economic activities for building their wealth and prominence.
Keywords: Urbanization; land use and cover change; remote sensing; GIS; flood; the Pearl River Delta
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MDPI and ACS Style

Zhang, H.; Ma, W.-C.; Wang, X.-R. Rapid Urbanization and Implications for Flood Risk Management in Hinterland of the Pearl River Delta, China: The Foshan Study. Sensors 2008, 8, 2223-2239.

AMA Style

Zhang H, Ma W-C, Wang X-R. Rapid Urbanization and Implications for Flood Risk Management in Hinterland of the Pearl River Delta, China: The Foshan Study. Sensors. 2008; 8(4):2223-2239.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Zhang, Hao; Ma, Wei-chun; Wang, Xiang-rong. 2008. "Rapid Urbanization and Implications for Flood Risk Management in Hinterland of the Pearl River Delta, China: The Foshan Study." Sensors 8, no. 4: 2223-2239.

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