Relationship between Sediment Yield and Socio-economic Factors in the Upper Yangtze River

  • 1. Key Laboratory of Water Cycle and Related Land Surface Processes, Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, CAS, Beijing 100101, China;
    2. Graduate University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100049, China;
    3. School of Biological Science and Medical Engineering, Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Beijing 100191, China

Received date: 2010-05-03

  Revised date: 2010-07-09

  Online published: 2010-09-20

Supported by

Foundation: Ministry of Water Resources Commonweal Special Project, No.2007SHZ0901034]


Taking Sichuan Province and Chongqing Municipality as an example, this paper studies the relationship between socio-economic factors and sediment yield in the Upper Yangtze River based on section data in 1989 and 2007. The results show that sediment yield is significantly correlated with population density and farmland area, in which the former appears to be more closely related to sediment yield. Moreover, in the relation of sediment yield vs. population density, a critical value of population density exists, below which the sediment yield increases with the increase of population density and over which the sediment yield increases with the decrease of population density. The phenomenon essentially reflects the influence of natural factors, such as topography, rainfall and soil property, and that of some human activities on sediment yield. Regions with higher population density than critical value are located in the east of the study area and are characterized by plains, hills and low mountains, whereas regions with lower level are located in the west and are characterized by middle and high mountains. In the eastern region, more people live on the lands with a low slope where soil erosion is slight; therefore, sediment yield is negatively related with population density. In contrast, in the western region, the population tends to be concentrated in the areas with abundant soil and water resources which usually lead to a higher intensity of natural erosion, and in turn, high-intensity agricultural practices in these areas may further strengthen local soil erosion.

Cite this article

DU Jun, SHI Changxing, HU Dawei, WANG Hongbing, FAN Xiaoli . Relationship between Sediment Yield and Socio-economic Factors in the Upper Yangtze River[J]. Acta Geographica Sinica, 2010 , 65(9) : 1089 -1098 . DOI: 10.11821/xb201009006


[1] Lv Yao. Identification, evaluation and internalization of externalities of agriculture. Progress in Geography, 2007, 26(1): 123-132.

[吕耀. 农业外部性识别、评价及其内部化. 地理科学进展, 2007, 26(1): 123-132.]

[2] Lu X X, Higgitt D L. Sediment yield variability in the upper Yangtze, China. Earth Surface Process and Landforms, 1999, 24(12): 1077-1093.

[3] Shi Changxing. Scaling effects on sediment yield in the upper Yangtze River. Geographical Research, 2008, 27(4): 800-810.

[师长兴. 长江上游输沙尺度效应研究. 地理研究, 2008, 27(4): 800-810.]

[4] Wang Zhaoyin, Huang Wendian, Li Yitian. Sediment budget of the Yangtze River. Journal of Sediment Research, 2007, (2): 1-10.

[王兆印, 黄文典, 李义天. 长江流域泥沙输移与概算. 泥沙研究, 2007, (2): 1-10.]

[5] Lu X X, Higgitt D L. Recent changes of sediment yield in the upper Yangtze, China. Environmental Management, 1998, 22(5): 697-709.

[6] Zhang Xinbao, Wen Anbang. Variations of sediment in upper stream of Yangtze River and its tributary. Journal of Hydraulic Engineering, 2002, (4): 56-59.

[张信宝, 文安邦. 长江上游干流和支流河流泥沙近期变化及其原因. 水利学 报, 2002, (4): 56-59.]

[7] Lei Xiaozhang, Huang Lilong. Discussion of soil erosion mechanism in some areas of the upper Yangtze River. Journal of Sichuan Forestry Science and Technology, 1991, 12(4): 9-16.

[雷孝章, 黄礼隆. 长江上游部分地区土壤侵蚀与机制 探讨. 四川林业科技, 1991, 12(4): 9-16.]

[8] Xu Jiongxin, Sun Ji. Temporal variation in suspended sediment concentration of the upper Changjiang River and its tributaries. Geographical Research, 2008, 27(2): 332-342.

[许炯心, 孙季. 长江上游干支流悬移质含沙量的变化及其原 因. 地理研究, 2008, 27(2): 332-342.]

[9] Zhu Y M, Lu X X, Zhou Y. Sediment flux sensitivity to climate change: A case study in the Longchuanjiang catchment of the upper Yangtze River, China. Global and Planetary Change, 2008, 60(3/4): 429-442.

[10] Xu Quanxi, Shi Guoyu, Chen Zefang. Analysis of recent changing characteristics and tendency runoff and sediment transport in the upper reach of Yangtze River. Advances in Water Science, 2004, 15(4): 420-426.

[许全喜, 石国钰, 陈 泽方. 长江上游近期水沙变化特点及其趋势分析. 水科学进展, 2004, 15(4): 420-426.]

[11] Walling D E, Fang D. Recent trends in the suspended sediment loads of the world's rivers. Global and Planetary Change, 2004, 39(1/2): 111-126.

[12] Dong Yaohua, Hui Xiaoxiao. Preliminary analysis on characteristics and changing tendency of annual runoff and sediment load of Changjiang River main channels. Journal of Yangtze River Scientific Research Institute, 2008, 25(2): 16-20.

[董耀华, 惠晓晓. 长江干流河道水沙特性与变化趋势初步分析. 长江科学院院报, 2008, 25(2): 16-20.]

[13] Chen Songsheng, Zhang Ouyang, Chen Zefang. Variations of runoff and sediment load of the Jinsha River. Advances in Water Science, 2008, 19(4): 475-482.

[陈松生, 张欧阳, 陈泽方. 金沙江流域不同区域水沙变化特征及原因分析. 水科学进展, 2008, 19(4): 475-482.]

[14] Yang Shilun, Zhao Qingying, Belkin Igorm. Temporal variation in the sediment load of the Yangtze River and the influences of human activities. Journal of Hydrology, 2002, 263: 56-71.

[15] Xu Kehui, Milliman J D. Seasonal variations of sediment discharge from the Yangtze River before and after impoundment of the Three Gorges Dam. Geomorphology, 2009, 104(3/4): 1-8.

[16] Dai S B, Yang S L, Li M. The sharp decrease in suspended sediment supply from China's rivers to the sea. Hydrological Sciences Journal--Journal-des Sciences Hydrologiques, 2009, 51(1): 135-146.

[17] Xu Jiongxin, Sun Ji. Sediment yield in major sediment source areas of the upper Changjiang River basin in response to human activities. Scientia Geographica Sinica, 2007, 27(2): 211-218.

[许炯心, 孙季. 长江上游重点产沙区产沙量对 人类活动的响应. 地理科学, 2007, 27(2): 211-218.]

[18] Xu Jiongxin. Variation in grain size of suspended load in upper Changjiang River and its tributaries by human activities. Journal of Sediment Research, 2005, (3): 8-16.

[许炯心. 近40 年来长江上游干支流悬移质泥沙粒度的变化 及其与人类活动的关系. 泥沙研究, 2005, (3): 8-16.]

[19] Du Jun, Shi Changxing, Zhang Shouhong et al. Impact of human activities on recent changes in sediment discharge of the upper Yangtze River. Progress in Geography, 2010, 29(1): 15-22.

[杜俊, 师长兴, 张守红等. 人类活动对长江上游 近期输沙变化的影响. 地理科学进展, 2010, 29(1): 15-22.]

[20] Xu Jiongxin. Recent variations in water and sediment in relation with reservoir construction in the upper Changjiang River basin. Journal of Mountain Science, 2009, 27(4): 385-393.

[许炯心. 长江上游干支流近期水沙变化及其与水库 修建的关系. 山地学报, 2009, 27(4): 385-393.]

[21] Liu Quan, Wang Zhongjing. Study on changes of soil erosion under different land use patterns in Liao River basin based on GIS. Journal of Soil and Water Conservation, 2004, 18(4): 105-107.

[刘权, 王忠静. GIS 支持下辽河中下游 流域不同土地利用的土壤侵蚀变化分析. 水土保持学报, 2004, 18(4): 105-107.]

[22] Li Huixia, Liu Shuzhen, He Xiaorong et al. Relation between land use change and soil erosion change. Bulletin of Soil and Water Conservation, 2004, 24(4): 10-13.

[李辉霞, 刘淑珍, 何晓蓉等. 土地利用变化与土壤侵蚀强度变化的 关系分析. 水土保持通报, 2004, 24(4): 10-13.]

[23] Yu Feng, Li Xiaobing, Chen Yunhao et al. Land use change and soil erosion evaluation in Huangfuchuan Watershed. Acta Ecologica Sinica, 2006, 26(6): 1947-1956.

[喻锋, 李晓兵, 陈云浩等. 皇甫川流域土地利用变化与土壤侵蚀评 价. 生态学报, 2006, 26(6): 1947-1956.]

[24] Shi Changxing, Du Jun. Causes for stepped changes of sediment load in the upper Yangtze River. Journal of Sediment Research, 2009, (4): 17-24.

[师长兴, 杜俊. 长江上游输沙量阶段性变化和原因分析. 泥沙研究, 2009, (4): 17-24.]

[25] Xu Jiongxin. Efect of the changing rural socio-economic factors on sediment yield of the Jialinjiang River basin. Journal of Mountain Science, 2006, 24(4): 385-394.

[许炯心. 农村社会经济因素变化对嘉陵江产沙量的影响. 山地学 报, 2006, 24(4): 385-394.]

[26] Zhou Qinghua. The soil erosion by line type projects and its control methods. South to North Water Transfers and Water Science & Technology, 2003, 1(3): 41-46.

[周庆华. 交通输运等线型工程建设引起的水土流失及防治措施. 南 水北调与水利科技, 2003, 1(3): 41-46.]

[27] Ma Ronghua, Pu Yingxia, Ma Xiaodong. Developing the Spatial Association Pattern Based on GIS. Beijing: Science Press, 2007.

[马荣华, 蒲英霞, 马晓冬. GIS空间关联模式发现. 北京: 科学出版社, 2007.]

[28] United States Department of Agriculture. EPIC-Erosion/Productivity Impact Calculator 1. Model Documentation Technical Bulletin Number 1768, Washington D C, USDA-ARS, 1990.

[29] Liu Songbo, Zhuang Chunlan. Response of slope to slope erosion and sediment yield. Soil and Water Conservation in China, 2009, (5): 44-47.

[刘松波, 庄春兰. 坡度对坡面侵蚀产沙响应的研究. 中国水土保持, 2009, (5): 44-47.]

[30] Fu Suhua. Effect of soil containing rock fragment on infiltration. Journal of Soil and Water Conservation, 2005, 19(1): 171-175.

[符素华. 土壤中砾石存在对入渗影响研究进展. 水土保持学报, 2005, 19(1): 171-175.]

[31] Zhu Yuanjun, Shao Mingan. Spatial distribution of surface rock fragment on hill-slopes in a small catchment in wind-water erosion crisscross region of the Loess Plateau. Science in China: Series D, 2008, 51(6): 862-870.

[朱元骏, 邵明安. 黄土高原水蚀风蚀交错带小流域坡面表土砾石空间分布. 中国科学: D辑, 2008, 38(3): 375-383.]