Acta Geographica Sinica ›› 2019, Vol. 74 ›› Issue (11): 2273-2287.doi: 10.11821/dlxb201911006

• Spatio-temporal Coupling of Water-land Elements in Mountainous Areas • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Spatio-temporal coupling characteristic of water-land elements and its cause in typical mountains

ZHOU Peng1,3,DENG Wei1,2,3(),PENG Li1,2,ZHANG Shaoyao1,3   

  1. 1. Research Center for Mountain Development, Institute of Mountain Hazards and Environment, CAS, Chengdu 610041, China
    2. College of Geography and Resources Science, Sichuan Normal University, Chengdu 610101, China
    3. College of Resoureces and Environment, CAS, Beijing 100049, China
  • Received:2019-05-14 Revised:2019-10-09 Online:2019-11-25 Published:2019-11-01
  • Contact: DENG Wei
  • Supported by:
    National Basic Research Program of China(2015CB452700)


Water and land resources are the foundation for human wellbeing. The coupling of water-land elements in mountainous areas is closely related to the functionality of production-living-ecology space, whose coupling process and features are closely related to ecosystem services and sustainable socio-economic development in mountainous areas. Through constructing a more scientific coupling index of water-land elements (CIWL), the present study conducted a large-scale and long-term analysis of the coupling characteristics of the Taihang Mountains, Hengduan Mountains and Guizhou-Guangxi karst mountains. The influencing factors of the coupling index in each period were analyzed by employing geodetector method. The results show that: (1) The three mountainous areas are significantly different in spatial differences of coupling index of water-land elements. The Taihang Mountains are dominated by water deficiency, while the Hengduan Mountains are by the balanced area. The Guizhou-Guangxi mountainous areas are dominated by water deficiency and the abundant areas. (2) In terms of the vertical differentiation, the coupling of water-land elements of the three major mountainous areas varies at 1300 m, 1800-3400 m and 500-1500 m, respectively, with the coupling index of water-land elements in ecological functional sub-regions indicating that the forest ecological sub-region > forest grass ecological sub-region > agro-ecological sub-region. (3) Natural factors and human factors are responsible for spatial differentiation of coupling index, among which, the climate is a dominant driving factor, the topography and land use type are secondary, and the human factors are superimposed on the natural factors, jointly causing the complexity and variation of the coupling of water-land elements. The coupling index of water and land elements established in this paper has deepened the study of spatial-temporal processes of water and land interaction in mountainous areas, thereby providing a decision-making reference for coping with the sustainable development of mountainous areas in a changing environment.

Key words: water and land elements, coupling characteristics, geodetector, spatial-temporal differentiation, typical mountains