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Woinarski J.C.Z.,Environment | Woinarski J.C.Z.,Charles Darwin University | Legge S.,Charles Darwin University | Legge S.,Australian National University | And 16 more authors.
Conservation Letters | Year: 2011

This article provides a context to, attempts an explanation for, and proposes a response to the recent demonstration of rapid and severe decline of the native mammal fauna of Kakadu National Park. This decline is consistent with, but might be more accentuated than, declines reported elsewhere in northern Australia; however, such a comparison is constrained by the sparse information base across this region. Disconcertingly, the decline has similarities with the earlier phase of mammal extinctions that occurred elsewhere in Australia. We considered four proximate factors (individually or interactively) that might be driving the observed decline: habitat change, predation (by feral cats), poisoning (by invading cane toads), and novel disease. No single factor readily explains the current decline. The current rapid decline of mammals in Kakadu National Park and northern Australia suggests that the fate of biodiversity globally might be even bleaker than evident in recent reviews, and that the establishment of conservation reserves alone is insufficient to maintain biodiversity. This latter conclusion is not new; but the results reported here further stress the need to manage reserves far more intensively, purposefully, and effectively, and to audit regularly their biodiversity conservation performance. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Source


Su C.,CAS Research Center for Eco Environmental Sciences | Fu B.,CAS Research Center for Eco Environmental Sciences | Lu Y.,CAS Research Center for Eco Environmental Sciences | Lu N.,CAS Research Center for Eco Environmental Sciences | And 4 more authors.
Chinese Geographical Science | Year: 2011

Human activities alter land use patterns and affect landscape sustainability. It is therefore very important to investigate the relationship between land use change and human activities. This study focuses on the detection of changing land use patterns in the Yanhe River Basin in northern Loess Plateau of China between 1995 and 2008. Landscape metrics were used to analyze the changing land use patterns and to explore the related anthropogenic driving forces. Results show that: 1) Totally, 186 590 ha of croplands were converted into alternate land-use types (equivalent to 61.7% of the original cropland area). The majority of cropland areas were found to be converted into grassland and woodland areas (accounting for 55.9% and 4.9% respectively of the original cropland areas). 2) Both cropland and woodland demonstrated an increasing fragmentation tendency while grasslands showed a decreasing fragmentation tendency. 3) Multiple driving forces of land use change were thought to act together to changes in landscape metrics in the Yanhe River Basin. The anthropogenic driving forces were analyzed from four perspectives: ecological conservation policy, labor force transfer, industrial development, and rural settlement. The policy of the GfG (Grain for Green) project was the main driving factor which expedited the conversion from cropland to woodland and grassland. Industrial development was also found to affect land use change through the direct impact of economic activities such as oil exploration and agricultural production, or through indirect impacts such as the industrial structures readjustment. Labor force transfer from rural to urban areas was found to follow the industrial structure readjustment and further drove land use change from cropland to off-farm land use. Establishment of new tile-roofed houses instead of cave-type dwellings in rural settlements has helped to aggregate the original scattered land-use type of construction. © 2011 Science Press, Northeast Institute of Geography and Agroecology, CAS and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg. Source


Cao Z.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Gu B.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Mills G.,Environmental Australia Pty Ltd. | Han H.,Shanghai JiaoTong University
International Journal of Refrigeration | Year: 2010

This paper presents a novel strategy for predicting the performance of open vertical refrigerated display cabinets which is based on a modified two-fluid (MTF) model and an adaptive support vector machine (ASVM) algorithm. A MTF model (physical model) was built for open vertical refrigerated display cabinets, and then an ASVM algorithm (machine learning algorithm) was built. To verify the quantity of air leakage from the cabinet during operation, an important performance factor of display cabinets, an MTF model was built. After the training and validation data sets were constructed from the output of the MTF model, the problem was solved using an ASVM algorithm. The defrosting water quantity and total energy consumption / total display area (TEC/TDA), achieved from the experiments by using the predicted combination of the controlled parameters, were found to be reduced by 39.2% and 19.3%, respectively, from the experimental results of the original display cabinet. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd and IIR. All rights reserved. Source


Cao Z.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Gu B.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Han H.,Shanghai JiaoTong University | Mills G.,Environmental Australia Pty Ltd.
International Journal of Thermal Sciences | Year: 2010

This paper presents a novel strategy for optimizing the design of air curtains for open vertical refrigerated display cases which is based on an air curtain two-fluid of cooling loss (CLTF) model and a support vector machine (SVM) algorithm. A model for air curtain cooling loss, one important performance factor of display cases, is proposed. To verify the air curtain cooling loss and determine which design parameters significantly influence the performance of air curtains in open vertical display cases, the CLTF model was built to study the flow and transfer of heat through air curtains used in such display cases. After the object function for cooling loss is constructed, it is solved using an SVM algorithm with different input design parameter combinations. As a result, the predicted cooling loss is reduced by 19.6%. After being validated using experimental data, the TEC/TDA of optimum display case is found to be reduced by 17.1%. The experimental results show this strategy to be an effective method of optimizing the air curtain design. © 2010 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved. Source

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