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Journal of Arid Land  2018, Vol. 10 Issue (6): 892-904    DOI: 10.1007/s40333-018-0105-z
Research article     
Impact of large-scale vegetation restoration project on summer land surface temperature on the Loess Plateau, China
Guohua HE, Yong ZHAO*(), Jianhua WANG, Qingming WANG, Yongnan ZHU
State Key Laboratory of Stimulation and Regulation of Water Cycle in River Basin, China Institute of Water Resources and Hydropower Research, Beijing 100038, China
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A large-scale afforestation project has been carried out since 1999 in the Loess Plateau of China. However, vegetation-induced changes in land surface temperature (LST) through the changing land surface energy balance have not been well documented. Using satellite measurements, this study quantified the contribution of vegetation restoration to the changes in summer LST and analyzed the effects of different vegetation restoration patterns on LST during both daytime and nighttime. The results show that the average daytime LST decreased by 4.3°C in the vegetation restoration area while the average nighttime LST increased by 1.4°C. The contributions of the vegetation restoration project to the changes in daytime LST and nighttime LST are 58% and 60%, respectively, which are far greater than the impact of climate change. The vegetation restoration pattern of cropland (CR) converting into artificial forest (AF) has a cooling effect during daytime and a warming effect at nighttime, while the conversion of CR to grassland has an opposite effect compared with the conversion of CR to AF. Our results indicate that increasing evapotranspiration caused by the vegetation restoration on the Loess Plateau is the controlling factor of daytime LST change, while the nighttime LST change is affected by soil humidity and air humidity.

Key wordsvegetation restoration project      summer      land surface temperature      climate change      Loess Plateau     
Received: 03 February 2018      Published: 07 November 2018
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Cite this article:

Guohua HE, Yong ZHAO, Jianhua WANG, Qingming WANG, Yongnan ZHU. Impact of large-scale vegetation restoration project on summer land surface temperature on the Loess Plateau, China. Journal of Arid Land, 2018, 10(6): 892-904.

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