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Impacts of rural tourism-driven land use change on ecosystems services provision in Erhai Lake Basin, China

First Author: Li JH
Abstract: Tourism is an expanding activity worldwide, with vital implications for local economies but also for ecosystem management. Rural tourism in particular drives land use change, which results in ecosystem services provision being altered. We performed a comprehensive temporal and spatial assessment of the impact of tourism-driven land use change on ecosystem services and sought to identify tradeoffs between tourism income and provision of multiple ecosystem services in Erhai Lake Basin (ELB), China. The results show that constructed area in ELB, especially in the lakeside zone, increased strongly from 2000 to 2015 due to a tourism boom (in which tourism revenues increased 12-fold), at the expense of farmland, grassland, and forest. With these land changes, ecosystem services also changed greatly, to the detriment of ELB as a whole and especially the lakeside zone. By 2015, soil retention had decreased and nitrogen and soil export had increased, compared with the levels in 2000, while there was only a slight fluctuation in carbon storage and water yield. The nitrogen and soil exports are impairing water quality in Erhai Lake and causing severe environmental problems. This study provides empirical evidence of the important impact of tourism-driven land use change on provision of multiple ecosystem services. For environmentally friendly tourism in ELB and beyond, a form of sustainable tourism should be established. Tourism development and ecosystem services provision should be fully weighed up and considered in future tourism planning and land use management.
Contact the author: Bai Y
Page Number: 101081
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Impact Factor: 6.33
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PubYear: Arp 2020
Volume: 42
Publication Name: Ecosystem Services
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