Spatial–temporal variation of ecosystem service values in Ebinur Lake Wetland National Natural Reserve from 1972 to 2016, Xinjiang, arid region of China


National nature reserves in China protect ecosystem and well-being in its region while benefiting humans by providing ecosystem services. Land-use/cover changes result in changes in the landscape pattern and affect the provision of ecosystem service value (ESV). The monetary evaluation of spatial–temporal changes in landscape patterns and ecosystem services in the arid region of China has been inadequately studied. Therefore, the Ebinur Lake Wetland National Nature Reserve (ELWNNR) in the arid region of China was chosen as a study object to evaluate the spatial–temporal variation in ecosystem service values (ESVs) under changes in land use/cover. The research analysed land-use/cover change in ELWNNR using a Sankey diagram, the spatial–temporal variation in ELWNNR ESVs using ArcGIS. Meanwhile, it also analysed the landscape patterns and total ESVs of the core area, buffer area and experimental area of ELWNNR at a regional scale. Four Landsat data sets from 1972, 1998, 2007 and 2016 were chosen to estimate the changes in land-use/cover types and ESV in ELWNNR. Meanwhile, the sensitivity of ESV was also analysed to validate the estimation of ESV in ELWNNR. The results showed that the total ESV of ELWNNR was 3.12 × 109 CNY (USD$ 4.88 × 108) in 1972 and dropped to 2.71 × 109 CNY (USD$ 4.24 × 108) in 2016. The provision of total ESV in ELWNNR decreased by approximately 0.41 × 109 CNY (USD$ 6.42 × 107) from 1972 to 2016, although there were fluctuations in 1998 and 2007. The core area possessed the highest ESV among all the areas, showing an increase in the provision of ESV in ELWNNR. All the areas of ELWNNR became highly fragmented, and the landscape patterns became more complex during this time period. The results of the study provide sufficient information about the ecosystem services in the region in the absence of complete data sets and contribute to conservation planning of national nature reserves.

Publication Title

Environmental Earth Sciences