Spatio-temporal changes in water-related ecosystem services provision and trade-offs with food production
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A key challenge for sustainability is protecting water-related ecosystems and the services (WESs) they provide while enhancing food security. Food production usually drives land use change, which results in ecosystem services provision being altered. However, the underlying mechanisms are still unclear and relevant research is scarce. In this study, a spatio-temporal assessment framework was developed to assess the impact of food production-driven land use change on WESs and to analyze tradeoffs between food production and WESs provision, taking Songhua River Basin (SRB) as a case study. The results showed that: 1) food production increased from 0.497×108tons to 0.798×108tons despite area of cultivated land decreasing from 23.61×104km2 to 23.40×104km2 during the study period (2000–2015). 2) Water yield and soil retention both showed a downward trend, while nitrogen and phosphorus exports showed an increasing trend, in 2000–2015.3) Food production showed a trade-off relationship with soil retention and water yield, but a synergistic relationship with nitrogen and phosphorus export. This is important empirical evidence of the impact of food production-driven land use change on WESs. For simultaneous development of food production and WESs, a form of sustainable agricultural production must be established, with intensification of existing land use and establishment of farmland shelterbelts. This critical knowledge can be applied in developing practical ecosystem protection measures and land management strategies for food security in China and beyond.
- Earth Science Cluster [56 items ]