Assessment of downscaling planetary boundaries to semi-arid ecosystems with a local perception: A case study in the middle reaches of Heihe River

Heng Yi Teah, Tomohiro Akiyama, Ricardo San Carlos, Orlando Vargas Rayo, Yu Ting Joanne Khew, Sijia Zhao, Lingfeng Zheng, Motoharu Onuki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The middle reaches of Heihe River are located in the oasis of the Gobi Desert where limited freshwater supply supports more than 1.5 million inhabitants. The intense agricultural activities are depleting the groundwater reserve. Consequently, natural landscapes and habitats are degraded. Though such development improves the livelihood of the local community, long-term sustainability of the ecosystem is at risk. Local authorities must be informed holistically to prepare for adapting to the changes and/or mitigating the impacts. The purpose of this study was to perform a regional sustainability assessment based on downscaling the planetary boundaries (PBs). We proposed a regional safe operating space framework that applied a top-down approach using the environmental monitoring data, and a bottom-up approach using knowledge from the local perception about environmental disaster. We conducted on-site samplings and interviews of residents to demonstrate the method. Overall, we showed that the middle reaches had transgressed the safe operating space, particularly on the freshwater use and biogeochemical flow dimensions. We found that the local perception acquired from interviews complemented the insufficiency of the monitoring data and provided the insightful social implications of transgressing the safe operating space, i.e., the anticipated impacts on local livelihood, for policy support.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1233
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Volume8
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Jan 1
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

downscaling
Ecosystems
livelihood
Sustainable development
Rivers
river
sustainability
monitoring
Monitoring
ecosystem
interview
desert
Disasters
inhabitant
habitat
top-down approach
Groundwater
disaster
bottom-up approach
oasis

Keywords

  • Downscaling planetary boundaries
  • Local perception
  • Planetary boundaries
  • Regional safe operating space
  • Semi-arid ecosystem
  • Sustainability assessment
  • Sustainable development

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law

Cite this

Assessment of downscaling planetary boundaries to semi-arid ecosystems with a local perception : A case study in the middle reaches of Heihe River. / Teah, Heng Yi; Akiyama, Tomohiro; Carlos, Ricardo San; Rayo, Orlando Vargas; Khew, Yu Ting Joanne; Zhao, Sijia; Zheng, Lingfeng; Onuki, Motoharu.

In: Sustainability (Switzerland), Vol. 8, No. 12, 1233, 01.01.2016.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Teah, Heng Yi ; Akiyama, Tomohiro ; Carlos, Ricardo San ; Rayo, Orlando Vargas ; Khew, Yu Ting Joanne ; Zhao, Sijia ; Zheng, Lingfeng ; Onuki, Motoharu. / Assessment of downscaling planetary boundaries to semi-arid ecosystems with a local perception : A case study in the middle reaches of Heihe River. In: Sustainability (Switzerland). 2016 ; Vol. 8, No. 12.
@article{b54d404401b4498abd9be4f506457458,
title = "Assessment of downscaling planetary boundaries to semi-arid ecosystems with a local perception: A case study in the middle reaches of Heihe River",
abstract = "The middle reaches of Heihe River are located in the oasis of the Gobi Desert where limited freshwater supply supports more than 1.5 million inhabitants. The intense agricultural activities are depleting the groundwater reserve. Consequently, natural landscapes and habitats are degraded. Though such development improves the livelihood of the local community, long-term sustainability of the ecosystem is at risk. Local authorities must be informed holistically to prepare for adapting to the changes and/or mitigating the impacts. The purpose of this study was to perform a regional sustainability assessment based on downscaling the planetary boundaries (PBs). We proposed a regional safe operating space framework that applied a top-down approach using the environmental monitoring data, and a bottom-up approach using knowledge from the local perception about environmental disaster. We conducted on-site samplings and interviews of residents to demonstrate the method. Overall, we showed that the middle reaches had transgressed the safe operating space, particularly on the freshwater use and biogeochemical flow dimensions. We found that the local perception acquired from interviews complemented the insufficiency of the monitoring data and provided the insightful social implications of transgressing the safe operating space, i.e., the anticipated impacts on local livelihood, for policy support.",
keywords = "Downscaling planetary boundaries, Local perception, Planetary boundaries, Regional safe operating space, Semi-arid ecosystem, Sustainability assessment, Sustainable development",
author = "Teah, {Heng Yi} and Tomohiro Akiyama and Carlos, {Ricardo San} and Rayo, {Orlando Vargas} and Khew, {Yu Ting Joanne} and Sijia Zhao and Lingfeng Zheng and Motoharu Onuki",
year = "2016",
month = "1",
day = "1",
doi = "10.3390/su8121233",
language = "English",
volume = "8",
journal = "Sustainability",
issn = "2071-1050",
publisher = "MDPI AG",
number = "12",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Assessment of downscaling planetary boundaries to semi-arid ecosystems with a local perception

T2 - A case study in the middle reaches of Heihe River

AU - Teah, Heng Yi

AU - Akiyama, Tomohiro

AU - Carlos, Ricardo San

AU - Rayo, Orlando Vargas

AU - Khew, Yu Ting Joanne

AU - Zhao, Sijia

AU - Zheng, Lingfeng

AU - Onuki, Motoharu

PY - 2016/1/1

Y1 - 2016/1/1

N2 - The middle reaches of Heihe River are located in the oasis of the Gobi Desert where limited freshwater supply supports more than 1.5 million inhabitants. The intense agricultural activities are depleting the groundwater reserve. Consequently, natural landscapes and habitats are degraded. Though such development improves the livelihood of the local community, long-term sustainability of the ecosystem is at risk. Local authorities must be informed holistically to prepare for adapting to the changes and/or mitigating the impacts. The purpose of this study was to perform a regional sustainability assessment based on downscaling the planetary boundaries (PBs). We proposed a regional safe operating space framework that applied a top-down approach using the environmental monitoring data, and a bottom-up approach using knowledge from the local perception about environmental disaster. We conducted on-site samplings and interviews of residents to demonstrate the method. Overall, we showed that the middle reaches had transgressed the safe operating space, particularly on the freshwater use and biogeochemical flow dimensions. We found that the local perception acquired from interviews complemented the insufficiency of the monitoring data and provided the insightful social implications of transgressing the safe operating space, i.e., the anticipated impacts on local livelihood, for policy support.

AB - The middle reaches of Heihe River are located in the oasis of the Gobi Desert where limited freshwater supply supports more than 1.5 million inhabitants. The intense agricultural activities are depleting the groundwater reserve. Consequently, natural landscapes and habitats are degraded. Though such development improves the livelihood of the local community, long-term sustainability of the ecosystem is at risk. Local authorities must be informed holistically to prepare for adapting to the changes and/or mitigating the impacts. The purpose of this study was to perform a regional sustainability assessment based on downscaling the planetary boundaries (PBs). We proposed a regional safe operating space framework that applied a top-down approach using the environmental monitoring data, and a bottom-up approach using knowledge from the local perception about environmental disaster. We conducted on-site samplings and interviews of residents to demonstrate the method. Overall, we showed that the middle reaches had transgressed the safe operating space, particularly on the freshwater use and biogeochemical flow dimensions. We found that the local perception acquired from interviews complemented the insufficiency of the monitoring data and provided the insightful social implications of transgressing the safe operating space, i.e., the anticipated impacts on local livelihood, for policy support.

KW - Downscaling planetary boundaries

KW - Local perception

KW - Planetary boundaries

KW - Regional safe operating space

KW - Semi-arid ecosystem

KW - Sustainability assessment

KW - Sustainable development

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85007288843&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85007288843&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.3390/su8121233

DO - 10.3390/su8121233

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:85007288843

VL - 8

JO - Sustainability

JF - Sustainability

SN - 2071-1050

IS - 12

M1 - 1233

ER -