Journal cover Journal topic
Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
https://doi.org/10.5194/nhessd-3-3225-2015
© Author(s) 2015. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.
Research article
11 May 2015
Review status
This discussion paper is a preprint. It has been under review for the journal Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences (NHESS). The revised manuscript was not accepted.
Spatial analysis of damaged vegetation in the Mianyuan River basin after the Wenchuan Earthquake
H. Z. Zhang1,2,3, J. R. Fan2, X. M. Wang1,3, T. H. Chi1, and L. Peng1 1Institute of Remote Sensing and Digital Earth, Chines Academy of Sciences, Beijing, 100101, China
2Institute of Mountain Hazards and Environment, Chines Academy of Sciences, Chengdu, 610041, China
3University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, 100049, China
Abstract. The 2008 Wenchuan earthquake destroyed large areas of vegetation. Presently, these areas of damaged vegetation are at various stages of recovery. In this study, we present a probabilistic approach for slope stability analysis that quantitatively relates data on earthquake-damaged vegetation with slope stability in a given river basin. The Mianyuan River basin was selected for model development, and earthquake-damaged vegetation and post-earthquake recovery conditions were identified via the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI), from multi-temporal (2001–2014) remote sensing images. DSAL (digital elevation model, slope, aspect, and lithology) spatial zonation was applied to characterize the survival environments of vegetation, which were used to discern the relationships between successful vegetation regrowth and environmental conditions. Finally, the slope stability susceptibility model was trained through multivariate analysis of earthquake-damaged vegetation and its controlling factors (i.e. topographic environments and material properties). Application to the Subao River basin validated the proposed model, showing that most of the damaged vegetation areas have high susceptibility levels (88.1% > susceptibility level 3, and 61.5% > level 4). Our modelling approach may also be valuable for use in other regions prone to landslide hazards.

Citation: Zhang, H. Z., Fan, J. R., Wang, X. M., Chi, T. H., and Peng, L.: Spatial analysis of damaged vegetation in the Mianyuan River basin after the Wenchuan Earthquake, Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci. Discuss., https://doi.org/10.5194/nhessd-3-3225-2015, 2015.
H. Z. Zhang et al.
H. Z. Zhang et al.

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Short summary
The 2008 Wenchuan earthquake destroyed large areas of vegetation. Presently, these areas of damaged vegetation are at various stages of recovery. In this study, we present a probabilistic approach for slope stability analysis that quantitatively relates data on earthquake-damaged vegetation with slope stability in a given river basin. Presently, these recovered vegetation helped stabilize the slopes. Nevertheless, there remains potential for future slope instability in these recovered areas.
The 2008 Wenchuan earthquake destroyed large areas of vegetation. Presently, these areas of...
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