Spatial-temporal variations of Köppen climate types in China

  • The changes of Köppen climate type in China are studied in this study
  • The arid climate zone is expanding eastward and southward
  • The climate boundaries are shifting northward

The classification of Köppen climate type has been widely used to identify regional climate change. This study investigated the changes of Köppen climate type over China during 1964 - 2015. On average, the arid climate was located in the northwest, tropical climate, temperate climate, and cold climate were distributed in the east from south to north along the latitude, and polar climate was concentrated on the Tibetan Plateau. Comparing Köppen climate types during 1964 - 1989 and 1990 - 2015, we found that cold climate with dry winter was replaced by a cold steppe climate in Northeast China and North China, warm summer was replaced by cold summer in Northeast China and the Tibetan Plateau, tundra climate was substituted by cold climate in the Tibetan Plateau, and cold climate was replaced by temperate climate in Central China and East China. Our results showed that the arid climate expanded eastward and southward, which may have resulted from a decrease in precipitation. Owing to the increase in temperature, the climate zones moved northward. This study provides valuable insights for government decision-makers in formulating crop planting systems, water resource management, and land use planning.

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Published by The Chinese Geoscience Union