Quantifying the interactive impacts of global dimming and warming on wheat yield and water use in China

Elsevier Inc
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Agricultural and Forest Meteorology, 2013, 182-183 (1), pp. 342 - 351
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Solar radiation has been declining across many parts of the world over the last 50 years as a consequence of industrialization increasing atmospheric aerosols, known as 'global dimming'. This study evaluatesthe impact of 'global dimming' and climate change on wheat yield and water use in China during thepast decades using the Agricultural Production Systems Simulator. Three regions, Beijing, Chengdu andUrumqi were selected to represent three different patterns of climate-light environments in China. Thedecline in solar radiation was in conjunction with a warming trend during the past decades. Solar radiationduring the wheat season declined by 20, 27 and 10% at Beijing, Chengdu and Urumqi, respectively, duringthe past four decades. Minimum temperature increased during the same period by 3.9, 1.5 and 2.3?C,respectively. The reduction in solar radiation had no significant impact on simulated wheat yields in theBeijing region while simulated grain yields in the Chengdu region decreased by 32%. Variation of solarradiation explained 74% of changes in grain yield at Chengdu. Simulated grain yields in the Urumqi regionincreased by 24% during the last decades due to increasing minimum temperature and rainfall. Simulatedevapotranspiration declined with the decline of solar radiation. Water use efficiency increased at Beijingand Urumqi, with no significant change at Chengdu. Declining solar radiation from high radiation levelshad no effect on wheat yield but improved water use efficiency, while under low radiation levels grainyields decreased significantly.
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