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Remote Sens. 2017, 9(7), 730;

Urban Land-Cover Dynamics in Arid China Based on High-Resolution Urban Land Mapping Products

State Key Laboratory of Desert and Oasis Ecology, Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Urumqi 830011, China
University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China
Key Laboratory of Carbon Cycling in Forest Ecosystems and Carbon Sequestration of Zhejiang Province, School of Environmental & Resource Sciences, Zhejiang Agriculture and Forestry University, Lin An 311300, China
Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100101, China
Inner Mongolia University of Finance and Economics, Inner Mongolia, Hohhot 010018, China
Institute of Remote Sensing and Digital Earth, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100094, China
College of Resources and Environmental Sciences, Northeast Agricultural University, Harbin 150030, China
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Conghe Song, Junxiang Li, Weiqi Zhou, Soe Myint and Prasad S. Thenkabail
Received: 24 May 2017 / Revised: 1 July 2017 / Accepted: 12 July 2017 / Published: 14 July 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Remote Sensing of Urban Ecology)
Full-Text   |   PDF [5974 KB, uploaded 15 July 2017]   |  


Rapid urbanization has occurred in northwestern China, threatening the sustainability of its fragile dryland ecosystems. A lack of precise urban land-cover information has limited our understanding on the urbanization in the dryland. Here, we examined urban land-cover changes from 2000 to 2014 in 21 major cities that comprise over 50% of the developed land in arid China, using Landsat Enhanced Thematic Mapper Plus and Operational Land Imager data, and a hybrid classification method. The 15-m resolution urban land-cover products (including impervious surfaces, vegetation, bare soil, and water bodies) had an overall accuracy of 90.37%. Based on these new land use products, we found the urbanization in arid China was characterized by the dramatic expansion of impervious surface (+13.23%) and reduction of bare soil (−13.41%), while the proportions of vegetation (+0.27%) and water (−0.10%) remained stable. The observed dynamic equilibrium of vegetated ratio implies an increasing harmonization of urbanization and greening, which was particularly important for the sustainability of fragile urban ecosystems in arid regions. From an economic perspective, gross domestic product and population were significantly correlated with impervious surfaces, and oasis cities displayed a stronger ability to attract new residents than desert cities. View Full-Text
Keywords: urban expansion; land-cover change; greening; precise mapping products; arid China urban expansion; land-cover change; greening; precise mapping products; arid China

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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 (CC BY 4.0).

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Pan, T.; Lu, D.; Zhang, C.; Chen, X.; Shao, H.; Kuang, W.; Chi, W.; Liu, Z.; Du, G.; Cao, L. Urban Land-Cover Dynamics in Arid China Based on High-Resolution Urban Land Mapping Products. Remote Sens. 2017, 9, 730.

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