Climate Change and its Human Dimensions based on GIS and Meteorological Statistics in Pearl River Delta, Southern China

Meteorological Applications, Article first published online 16 August 2010

Haoyang Dou and Xinyi Zhao

“Climate change in the Pearl River Delta (PRD) has attracted growing attention along with rapid urbanization in Southern China. Annual mean temperatures in this area have increased more rapidly than the average level, which can be attributed to population expansion and land use changes in this region.

“In this study, temperature records from 31 weather stations in the PRD in Guangdong, China and the global dataset from the National Centres for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) Reanalysis (R-2) are analysed. Data from NCEP R-2 and temperature soundings taken at 850 hPa are used to define the background temperature. Anthropogenic temperature is then calculated according to the observed temperature and background temperature. The relationships of anthropogenic temperature to population density and area ratio of land-use types are analysed by univariate and multiple regression analysis techniques.

“Spatial distribution of anthropogenic temperature in the daytime is different from that at night. Model results indicate that relationships between population and anthropogenic temperature in the daytime are logarithmic or inverse but tend to be linearly related at night. Multiple regression analysis conducted on the area ratios of land-use types and anthropogenic temperature shows that a strong relationship exists between the two in spring and autumn. Positive correlations with anthropogenic temperature from arid land, water bodies and urban land, as well as a negative correlation from woodland, are detected regardless of time of day. Contrary to the paddy field, grassland and sea show a negative correlation with anthropogenic temperature in the daytime and a positive correlation at night.”