Rising temperature threatens China’s cropland

Journal Article (Journal Article)

The rising demand for calories and protein together with urbanization, pose significant challenges to China’s food security. The determination of policy actions requires accurate estimates of climatic impacts on both crop yields (intensive margin) and cropland area (extensive margin). However, the analysis of the latter has been limited, especially in developing countries. Here, we assess the impact of temperature on land use in China by matching high-resolution satellite data on land use with daily weather data from 1980 to 2010. We find that extremely hot weather (daily average temperature above 30 °C) has a long-lasting effect on reducing cropland in China. Combining climate projections from 39 downscaled climate models, we predict that climate change is likely to reduce China’s cropland area by 2.09%-25.51% under IPCC’s slowest and fastest-warming scenarios by the end of this century. In addition, we find that non-irrigated land is more susceptible to rising temperatures in the short term; however, irrigated land is subject to a similar impact in the long term. This result suggests that the adaptive effect of irrigation could be limited under persistent rising in temperature.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Wang, J; Zhang, J; Zhang, P

Published Date

  • August 1, 2022

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 17 / 8

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1748-9326

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1748-9318

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1088/1748-9326/ac84f1

Citation Source

  • Scopus