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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(8), 840; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph14080840

Effects of Land Use/Cover Changes and Urban Forest Configuration on Urban Heat Islands in a Loess Hilly Region: Case Study Based on Yan’an City, China

1
College of Forestry, Northwest A&F University, Yangling 712100, China
2
Tourism Department, Shaanxi Vocational & Technical College, Xi’an 710100, China
3
Gaoling Branch School, Shaanxi Agricultural Broadcasting and Television School, Xi’an 710200, China
4
School of Biological and Environmental Engineering, Xi’an University, Xi’an 710065, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 8 June 2017 / Revised: 17 July 2017 / Accepted: 19 July 2017 / Published: 26 July 2017
(This article belongs to the Section Environmental Science and Engineering)
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Abstract

In this study Yan’an City, a typical hilly valley city, was considered as the study area in order to explain the relationships between the surface urban heat island (SUHI) and land use/land cover (LULC) types, the landscape pattern metrics of LULC types and land surface temperature (LST) and remote sensing indexes were retrieved from Landsat data during 1990–2015, and to find factors contributed to the green space cool island intensity (GSCI) through field measurements of 34 green spaces. The results showed that during 1990–2015, because of local anthropogenic activities, SUHI was mainly located in lower vegetation cover areas. There was a significant suburban-urban gradient in the average LST, as well as its heterogeneity and fluctuations. Six landscape metrics comprising the fractal dimension index, percentage of landscape, aggregation index, division index, Shannon’s diversity index, and expansion intensity of the classified LST spatiotemporal changes were paralleled to LULC changes, especially for construction land, during the past 25 years. In the urban area, an index-based built-up index was the key positive factor for explaining LST increases, whereas the normalized difference vegetation index and modified normalized difference water index were crucial factors for explaining LST decreases during the study periods. In terms of the heat mitigation performance of green spaces, mixed forest was better than pure forest, and the urban forest configuration had positive effects on GSCI. The results of this study provide insights into the importance of species choice and the spatial design of green spaces for cooling the environment. View Full-Text
Keywords: land surface temperature; landscape pattern analysis; spatial random point analysis; single-channel algorithm; urban green space cooling island land surface temperature; landscape pattern analysis; spatial random point analysis; single-channel algorithm; urban green space cooling island
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Zhang, X.; Wang, D.; Hao, H.; Zhang, F.; Hu, Y. Effects of Land Use/Cover Changes and Urban Forest Configuration on Urban Heat Islands in a Loess Hilly Region: Case Study Based on Yan’an City, China. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14, 840.

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