Due to great population pressure, China's government has always pursued a very strict policy to prevent decreases in arable land quantity and quality. Even so, a great deal of arable land has been converted to other uses. Economic development and population growth are two main driving forces of arable land loss. China's gross domestic product per capita was over USD 1000 in 2003, and USD 2000 in 2006, which means that China's economy is entering a stage of rapid development; further, the population of China increased sharply during this time, from 1.22 × 109 in 1996 to 1.31 × 109 in 2005. Against the backdrop of issues such as “who will feed China?” and global food security (1, 2), the decrease in quantity and changes in the use of arable land have attracted attention from the government and society.
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Vol. 38 • No. 2