JOURNAL OF NATURAL RESOURCES ›› 2019, Vol. 34 ›› Issue (10): 2073-2086.doi: 10.31497/zrzyxb.20191005

• Theory and Concept • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Carrying capacity reconsidered in spatial planning: Concepts, methods and applications

HAO Qing1,2,3(), DENG Ling1, FENG Zhi-ming2,3   

  1. 1. Chinese Academy of Natural Resource Economics, Beijing 101149, China
    2. Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, CAS, Beijing 100101, China
    3. Key Laboratory of Carrying Capacity Assessment for Resource and Environment, MNR, Beijing 101149, China
  • Received:2019-03-22 Revised:2019-06-30 Online:2019-10-28 Published:2019-10-28


Resource and environment carrying capacity is the scientific basis and developing constraints of spatial planning. This paper combs the development of the concept, theory and practical application of carrying capacity, and points out the existing problems in research and application, such as concept's obscurity boundary, evaluation biased index calculation, and insufficient research on carrying capacity transmission mechanism. The reform of the spatial planning system and the changes in production modes, lifestyles and development modes in the new era have put forward new demands on spatial planning. It is necessary to explore and innovate the carrying capacity evaluation which is supporting the spatial planning: (1) Further clarify the conceptual connotation of carrying capacity and form a concept set; (2) Study the internal mechanism of carrying capacity and clarify the formation mechanism of carrying capacity; (3) Construct a multi-space scale, multi-evaluation unit's carrying capacity evaluation system to meet the needs of multi-level spatial planning. In practice, it should provide a scientific basis for determining the main indicators and main tasks of spatial planning according to spatial planning and spatial governance changes, supporting new goals of spatial planning, adapting to new modes of spatial governance, and taking new approaches to spatial governance.

Key words: carrying capacity, spatial planning, spatial governance, suitability evaluation, transmission mechanism