This article contributes to research on how climate change will impact crops in China by moving from ex-post empirical analysis to forecasting. We construct a multiple regression model, using agricultural observations and meteorological simulations by GCMs, to simulate the possible planting boundaries and suitable planting regions of spring wheat under RCP4.5 scenario for the base period 2040s and 2070s. We find that the south boundary of possible planting region for spring wheat spreads along the belt: south Shandong—north Jiangsu—north Anhui—central Henan—north Hubei—southeast Sichuan—north Yunnan provinces, and will likely move northward under RCP4.5 scenario in 2040s and 2070s, resulting in the decrease of possible planting area in China. Moreover, the sowing and harvest date of spring wheat in the base period shows a gradually delayed phenomenon from the belt: south Xinjiang — Gansu, to the Tibet Plateau. As a result, the growth period of spring wheat in China will shorten because of the impacts of climate change. These results imply that a variety of adaptations measures should be set up in response to changing climatic conditions, including developing the planting base for spring wheat, restricting the planting area of spring wheat in sub-suitable areas at risk while expanding the planting area of optimal crops.
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Vol. 7 • No. 1