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Spatio-temporal Distribution of Major Historical Disasters in the China-Mongolia-Russia Economic Corridor

2020-07-31  |   Editor : houxue2018  
Category : Natural Sciences

The China-Mongolia Railway (Mongolian section, hereinafter “the Railway”) linking China and Mongolia was built between 1947 and 1955. The Railway bears 80% of the freight volume and 30% of the passenger volume within the Mongolian territory. The Railway is located at the intersection of the China-Mongolia-Russia economic corridor and Mongolia’s Steppe Road. It has historically been the main traffic artery among China, Mongolia, and Russia, and with the implementation of the Belt and Road Initiative, will become the core of traffic infrastructure in the China–Mongolia–Russia Economic Corridor. The natural geography of the China-Mongolia-Russia economic corridor is complex and diverse, the ecological environment is fragile and sensitive, and desertification is a serious problem. Its impact on the main traffic trunk lines between China and Mongolia is still unclear, which brings risks and challenges to the infrastructure construction of the China-Mongolia-Russia economic corridor.

Mongolia is a hotspot of global desertification. Desertification leads to loss of available grassland resources, decreased biological production, and deterioration of the ecological environment. During 1961–2006, the numbers of plant species in Mongolia’s forest steppe, real grassland, mountain meadow, desert steppe, and desert decreased by 50.0%, 44.7%, 30.3%, 23.8%, and 26.7%, respectively. The numbers of plant species continued to decrease annually, while grassland also continued to be severely degraded. By 2009, at least 72% of Mongolia’s land had been degraded, with continued expansion of the scope of desertification. With the continuous aggravation of desertification and the steady advances made in the China–Mongolia –Russia Economic Corridor construction, it is urgent to monitor, analyze, and diagnose patterns and dynamic variations of desertification land cover types along the Railway.

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