China sees rapid expansion of coastal aquaculture ponds
BEIJING, Sept. 5 (Xinhua) -- China has experienced a rapid expansion of coastal aquaculture ponds since 1984, according to a recent study paper published in the International Journal of Applied Earth Observation and Geoinformation.
Monitoring and mapping of aquaculture ponds are of utmost importance for the sustainable management of coastal ecosystems, said the paper.
Researchers generated maps of coastal aquaculture ponds in China from 1984 to 2016 at 30 meters spatial resolution. In addition, the spatial-temporal dynamics of coastal aquaculture ponds were examined.
The results showed that the country's total area of coastal aquaculture ponds expanded by 10,463 square kilometers, with the largest gain occurring from 1990 to 2000.
The provinces of Guangdong, Shandong, Jiangsu, Liaoning and Hebei had significant increases of aquaculture ponds areas, said the paper, accounting for 83 percent of the total number of expanded ponds.
Rapid expansion of coastal aquaculture ponds was observed within the 10 kilometers inshore buffer areas. And the loss of wetlands and arable land contributed more than half of the expansion.
The research is expected to study China's coastal artificial wetland ecosystem and provide support to figure out solutions for wetland sustainable utilization, scientific protection and land resources planning.