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Incorporating Rarity and Accessibility Factors into the Cultural Ecosystem Services Assessment in Mountainous Areas: A Case Study in the Upper Reaches of the Minjiang River

Yafeng Lu (), Qinwen Li (), Pei Xu () and Yukuan Wang ()
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Yafeng Lu: Institute of Mountain Hazards and Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences and Ministry of Water Resources, Chengdu 610041, China
Qinwen Li: Institute of Mountain Hazards and Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences and Ministry of Water Resources, Chengdu 610041, China
Pei Xu: Institute of Mountain Hazards and Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences and Ministry of Water Resources, Chengdu 610041, China
Yukuan Wang: Institute of Mountain Hazards and Environment, Chinese Academy of Sciences and Ministry of Water Resources, Chengdu 610041, China

Sustainability, 2019, vol. 11, issue 8, 1-11

Abstract: Cultural ecosystem services (CES) are not only a key source for supporting the development of economy but also maintain the ecological security in mountainous areas. However, there are limited numbers of studies that focus on establishing the assessment model for the CES at a regional scale. We combined the topographic factors and accessibility factors to quantify the distribution of CES and tested the approach with data on road and topography in the upper reaches of the Minjiang River. The results showed that the areas with high CES were located in the southwestern part of the study area, where it was convenient traffic and rare topography. Results from our approach were likely to support the development of local tourism industry because the distribution of CES was consistent with current hotspots for scenic spots. Meanwhile, we found that the area with high rarity and low accessibility should improve accessibility in order to enhance the capacity of CES. The assumptions applied in our approach highlighted the impacts of complex topography on CES, which could be suitable for the area with a lack of data. Moreover, our approach provided an effective way to assess CES for creating management strategies and enhancing capacity in mountainous areas.

Keywords: ecosystem services; cumulative viewshed analysis; K-means clustering algorithm; tourism industry; management (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Q Q0 Q2 Q3 Q5 Q56 O13 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019
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