FEATURE AND EVALUATION OF NATURAL DISASTERS AND ENVIRONMENT IN THE COASTAL ZONES OF CHINA
1997, 16 (1):
This paper discussed the distribution of coastal zones and the features of natural disasters that appear in this zone. Through assessing the natural environment, the developing tendency of coastal zones was predicted and the correspondent measures to be taken in the 21st century were pointed out. 1) The coastal zone is the zone where land and water interfere, i.e. the transition area between land and water. Stretching from Yalujiang River Embouchure of Liaoning Province ( in the north) to Beilun River Embouchure of Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region (in the south), China’s coastal line has a length of 18000km. China also has over 5000 islands with a coast line of about 14000km long. Apart from two main kinds of coasts, plain coast (sandy coast) and mountainous coast (rocky coast), some special coasts formed by living things, e. g. coral reef coast, mangrove coast and reedy coast are also existing. 2) Being a kind of ecotone, coastal zones present the characteristics of obvious weakness, i.e. strong endogenic and exogenic force and low resistance to them, which results in frequent natural disasters. Erosion and accumulation, Typhoon and storms, earthquakes, rainstorms, red tides, sea ice, etc., are the common disasters that often appear in these zones. Coastal zones are very sensitive to climate changes. With the climate warming up in the 21st century, the sea level will rise and the storm tides will increase, coastal zones will be seriously threatened by floods and storm tides, serious measures should be studied and taken in advance. 3) Society and economy are relatively advanced in coastal zones with over 90% of big cities, about 50% of population and 55% or so of national income distributed in this area.. Coastal zones are very rich in natural resources, e.g. oil, natural gas, mineral resources, land, intertidal zone, harbors, sea salt, aquatic resources, tourism, mangrove, reed, marine algae, etc.. Because of unreasonable human activities, natural resources are decreasing and the ecological environment is worsening, which will become the obstacle to the development of society and economy in China. Studying the features of natural disasters, assessing the natural environment of the coastal zones, help us obtain a better understanding of natural disasters, natural resources and environment in this zone, which is very important for the evaluation and exploitation and utilization of natural resources, and for the prevention and treatment of natural disasters.
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