Assessment of spatial and temporal ecological environment quality under land use change of urban agglomeration in the North Slope of Tianshan, China


In the current context of rapid development and urbanization, land use and land cover (LULC) types have undergone unprecedented changes, globally and nationally, leading to significant effects on the surrounding ecological environment quality (EEQ). The urban agglomeration in North Slope of Tianshan (UANST) is in the core area of the Silk Road Economic Belt of China. This area has experienced rapid development and urbanization with equally rapid LULC changes which affect the EEQ. Hence, this study quantified and assessed the spatial-temporal changes of LULC on the UANST from 2001 to 2018 based on remote sensing analysis. Combining five remote sensing ecological factors (WET, NDVI, IBI, TVDI, LST) that met the pressure-state-response(PSR) framework, the spatial-temporal distribution characteristics of EEQ were evaluated by synthesizing a new Remote Sensing Ecological Index (RSEI), with the interaction between land use change and EEQ subsequently analyzed. The results showed that LULC change dominated EEQ change on the UANST: (1) From 2001 to 2018, the temporal and spatial pattern of the landscape on the UANST has undergone tremendous changes. The main types of LULC in the UANST are Barren land and Grassland. (2) During the study period, RSEI values in the study area were all lower than 0.5 and were at the [good] levels, reaching 0.31, 0.213, 0.362, and 0346, respectively. In terms of time and space, the overall EEQ on the UANST experienced three stages of decline–rise–decrease. (3) The estimated changes in RSEI were highly related to the changes of LULC. During the period 2001 to 2018, the RSEI value of cropland showed a trend of gradual increase. However, the rest of the LULC type’s RSEI values behave differently at different times. As the UANST is the core area of Xinjiang’s urbanization and economic development, understanding and balancing the relationship between LULC and EEQ in the context of urbanization is of practical application in the planning and realization of sustainable ecological, environmental, urban, and social development in the UANST.

Publication Title

Environmental Science and Pollution Research