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Open AccessArticle

Cultivated Land Changes and Agricultural Potential Productivity in Mainland China

Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, 11A Datun Rd., Beijing 100101, China
University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, 19A Yuquan Rd., Beijing 100049, China
Jiangsu Center for Collaborative Innovation in Geographical Information Resource Development and Application, No.1 Wenyuan Rd., Nanjing 210023, China
Chinese Land Surveying and Planning Institute, No. 37 West district of Guanyingyuan, Beijing 100035, China
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Marc A. Rosen
Sustainability 2015, 7(9), 11893-11908;
Received: 20 July 2015 / Revised: 23 August 2015 / Accepted: 24 August 2015 / Published: 27 August 2015
With rapid and continuous population growth and the associated declining quality of cultivated land, food security in China has been attracting the attention of scholars both domestically and internationally. In recent decades, the implications of the cultivated land balance policy have promoted spatial changes of cultivated land. Estimating the agricultural potential productivity and assessing its response to cultivated land changes could provide a scientific basis for strategic decision-making concerning grain production and thus guarantee food security. In the present study, the Agro-Ecological Zone (AEZ) model was applied to estimate the agricultural potential productivity. Data from the second national land survey were first applied to characterize the changes of cultivated land (by comparing the cultivated land in 2009 with that in 2012) and their influence on potential productivity in Mainland China. We propose a utilization degree of total potential productivity (UTP) and its ratio coefficient (RUTP) to reveal the utilization status of potential productivity and its change characteristics at the provincial level. It was found that there was a trend for cultivated land to be shifted away from cities, and the average productive capability per hectare of cultivated land declined from 7386.5 kg/ha to 6955.2 kg/ha by occupying highly productive cultivated land generally near the cities and compensating less productive cultivated land in remote areas. UTPs and RUTPs indicate a significant difference in the utilization status of potential productivity among the 31 provinces of Mainland China. Grain production with the aim of sustainable development should be strategized according to the particular facts of each province. The methods we applied can mine the impacts of cultivated land changes on potential productivity and the utilization of potential productivity effectively. View Full-Text
Keywords: cultivated land change; potential productivity; utilization degree cultivated land change; potential productivity; utilization degree
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Xiao, L.; Yang, X.; Cai, H.; Zhang, D. Cultivated Land Changes and Agricultural Potential Productivity in Mainland China. Sustainability 2015, 7, 11893-11908.

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