This book discusses approaches to sustainable management of river oases along the Tarim River located in Xinjiang (northwest China).The Tarim Basin is one of the most arid regions in the world. Surrounded by the high mountain of Tian Shan, Kunlun and Pamir, the Taklamakan Desert dominates the landscape. The Tarim River originating from the snow and glacier melt in the mountains is the only relevant source of freshwater in this extreme environment; both for anthropogenic needs in agriculture Sustainable Management of River Oases and urban areas and the natural ecosystems of the Tarim River floodplains.Since the 1960s, the Chinese government has been promoting the development of the western provinces of China. Demographic development and socio-economic changes led to a rapid change of land use, which has substantially affected the quantity and quality of arable land, surface and ground water and impaired natural ecosystems and their ability to provide relevant ecosystem services. In particular, presently there is a conflict between water demand for agricultural irrigation and natural riparian vegetation; a conflict that might intensify in future due to climate change. Against this background, 11 German and 6 Chinese universities and research institutes have formed the SuMaRiO consortium (Sustainable Management of River Oases along the Tarim River) to investigate sustainable water management and land use strategies. Here, the authors of the SuMaRiO project summarize the key results of 5 years of interdisciplinary research conducted by this consortium within the Sustainable Land Management program of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research. They present specific results from the different work packages on climatology, hydrology, ecology, agricultural sciences, social sciences and economics. Furthermore, this book introduces the interdisciplinary research approach of the entire consortium, which has resulted in comprehensive policy recommendations for sustainable water- and land management and a decision support system, which represents the results of the study. The authors present an example of how interdisciplinary aspects and international cooperation are able to contribute to sustainable development in complex socio-ecological environments. von Cyffka, Bernd und Disse, Markus und Betz, Floria
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