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An Analysis of Land-Use Change and Grassland Degradation from a Policy Perspective in Inner Mongolia, China, 1990–2015

by 1,2,* and 1,2,3,4,*
1
State Key Laboratory of Resources and Environmental Information System, Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101, China
2
University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
3
Department of Geography, Humboldt–Universität zu Berlin, Unter den Linden 6, 10099 Berlin, Germany
4
Leibniz Centre for Agricultural Landscape Research (ZALF), Eberswalder Straße 84, 15374 Müncheberg, Germany
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2018, 10(11), 4048; https://doi.org/10.3390/su10114048
Received: 10 October 2018 / Revised: 30 October 2018 / Accepted: 31 October 2018 / Published: 5 November 2018
Land-use and land-cover changes have important effects on ecology, human systems, the environment, and policy at both global and regional scales. Thus, they are closely related to human activities. The extraction of more details about land-use change and grassland degradation is necessary to achieve future sustainable development in Inner Mongolia. The current study presents the patterns and processes of land-use changes over space and time, while also analyzing grassland degradation that is based on an analysis of land-use changes using a transition matrix, the Markov chain model and Moran’s I index, and a combination of long-time-scale remote sensing data as the data source. The major results indicate the following. (1) In 1990–2015, 13% (123,445 km2) of the total study area, including eight land-use types, changed. Woodland increased the most and moderate grassland decreased the most. (2) Grassland degradation, which occupied 2.8% of the total area of Inner Mongolia, was the major land-use conversion process before 2000, while, after 2000, 8.7% of the total area was restored; however, grassland degradation may still be the major ecological issue in Inner Mongolia. (3) Environmental protection policies show a close relationship with land-use conversion. View Full-Text
Keywords: land-use conversion; rangeland; degradation/restoration; ecological policy; Inner Mongolia land-use conversion; rangeland; degradation/restoration; ecological policy; Inner Mongolia
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Hu, Y.; Nacun, B. An Analysis of Land-Use Change and Grassland Degradation from a Policy Perspective in Inner Mongolia, China, 1990–2015. Sustainability 2018, 10, 4048.

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