Applied Geomorphology for Mitigation of Natural Hazards

IAG – International Association of Geomorphologists
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This session aims to bring together state-of-the-art methods for predicting, assessing, quantifying, and protecting against rock slope hazards. In particular, we seek studies presenting new theoretical, numerical or probabilistic modelling approaches, novel data sets derived from laboratory, in situ, or remote sensing applications, and state-of-the-art approaches to social, structural, or natural protection measures.

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Large slope instabilities have been frequently recognised in areas with different lithological sedimentary, igneous, metamorphic rocks and geological domains cordillera, volcanic, etc. Slow to very fast moving, complex mass movements have been recognized and sometimes described as strongly interrelated.

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Many types of slope instabilities can be grouped within this broad class, each presenting different types of hazard and risk. Study of these instabilities requires a multidisciplinary approach involving geology, geomorphology, geomechanics, hydro-geochemistry, and geophysics.

GM2 – Quantitative Methods and Digital Data in Geomorphology

Nevertheless, there are few studies of such natural hazards in this region and knowledge about their mitigation is of the utmost importance. This book documents. There are many natural hazards such as floods, landslides, volcanoes and earthquakes in the Asia-Pacific Region. Nevertheless, there are few studies of such.

These phenomena have been recognized on Earth as well as on other planetary bodies e. Mars, Moon. Trenching and drilling can be used for material characterization, recognition of episodes of activity, and sampling in slow slope movements. At the same time many different approaches can be used for monitoring and establishing of warning thresholds and systems for such phenomena.

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Geophysical survey methods can be used to assess both the geometrical and geomechanical characteristics of the unstable mass. Different dating techniques can be applied to determine the age and stages of movement. Many modeling approaches can be applied to evaluate instability and failure e. Studies of hydraulic and hydrologic boundary conditions and hydrochemistry are involved, both at the moment of initial failure and, later, during reactivation.

The impacts of such instabilities on structures and human activities can be substantial and of a variety of forms e. Furthermore, the local and regional sediment yield could be influenced by the landsliding activity and different landslides e. Weathering, tectonics, gravitational and volcanic processes can transform the regular sediment delivery from unstable slopes in catastrophic landslides.

Mass spreading and mass wasting processes can potentially evolve in rapid landslides are among the most dangerous natural hazards that threaten people and infrastructures, directly or through secondary events like tsunamis. Documentation and monitoring of these phenomena requires the adoption of a variety of methods. The difficulties in detecting their initiation and propagation have progressively prompted research into a wide variety of monitoring technologies. Nowadays, the combination of distributed sensor networks and remote sensing techniques represents a unique opportunity to gather direct observations.

A growing number of scientists with diverse backgrounds are dealing with the monitoring of processes ranging from volcano flak deformations to large debris flows and lahars. However, there is a need of improving quality and quantity of both documentation procedures and instrumental observations that would provide knowledge for more accurate hazard assessment, land-use planning and design of mitigation measures, including early warning systems.

Applied Geomorphology for Mitigation of Natural Hazards

Successful strategies for hazard assessment and risk reduction would imply integrated methodology for instability detection, modeling and forecasting. Nevertheless, only few studies exist to date in which numerical modelling integrate geological, geophysical, geodetic studies with the aim of understanding and managing of terrestrial and subaqueous volcano slope instability. Scientists working in the fields of hazard mapping, modelling, monitoring and early warning are invited to present their recent advancements in research and feedback from practitioners and decision makers.

We encourage multidisciplinary contributions that integrate field-based on-shore and submarine studies geological, geochemical , geomorphological mapping and account collection, with advanced techniques, as remote sensing data analysis, geophysical investigations, ground-based monitoring systems, and numerical and analogical modelling of volcano spreading, slope stability and debris flows.

Landslides are ubiquitous geomorphological phenomena with potentially catastrophic consequences. In several countries landslide mortality can be higher than that of any other natural hazard. Predicting landslides is a difficult task that is of both scientific interest and societal relevance that may help save lives and protect individual properties and collective resources. The session focuses on innovative methods and techniques to predict landslide occurrence, including the location, time, size, destructiveness of individual and multiple slope failures.

All landslide types are considered, from fast rockfalls to rapid debris flows, from slow slides to very rapid rock avalanches. All geographical scales are considered, from the local to the global scale. Of interest are contributions investigating theoretical aspects of natural hazard prediction, with emphasis on landslide forecasting, including conceptual, mathematical, physical, statistical, numerical and computational problems, and applied contributions demonstrating, with examples, the possibility or the lack of a possibility to predict individual or multiple landslides, or specific landslide characteristics.

Of particular interest are contributions aimed at: the evaluation of the quality of landslide forecasts; the comparison of the performance of different forecasting models; the use of landslide forecasts in operational systems; and investigations of the potential for the exploitation of new or emerging technologies e. We anticipate that the most relevant contributions will be collected in the special issue of an international journal. Wildfire is a global phenomenon responsible in each summer for tremendous environmental, social and economic losses. In the last two years, many lives were lost during the fires occurred in Portugal, Greece and California.

The conjunction of land abandonment, long drought periods, flammable monocultures, lack of forest management and urban development planning, resulted in an unprecedented destruction. This phenomenon have become a persistent threat worldwide, and this risk may increase in the future due to the combination of future fire-prone climate, together with the recent trends of afforestation, land abandonment and fire suppression.

A reflection focused in these variables is essential to understand the recurrence of these extreme fires, and the consequent fatalities that occurred in Portugal, California and Greece. These high-severity mega-fires have also an important impact on the environment as a result of the reduction of vegetation cover and high volatilization of nutrients.

Despite the fact that several ecosystems such as the Mediterranean have a high resilience to fires, the high wildfire recurrence is reducing their capacity for recuperation, contributing importantly to land degradation. The aim of this session is to join researchers that study fire effects on the ecosystems, from prevention to suppression, wildfire modelling, climate change impacts on fire and post-wildfire impacts, either by means of laboratory, field experiments, or numerical modelling.

It is time for scientists to join their strengths to give accurate answers to prevent and mitigate the effects of wildfires. Structures and techniques aiming at controlling sediment transport-related or erosion-related issues are numerous and sometimes very old. Hillslope management and bioengineering, reforestation, and torrent control works using transverse structures, as check dams and more recently open check dams, are common all over the world to curtail soil erosion and torrential hazards.

These actions may be launched for the control of sediment supply i to the stream fans and valley rivers for flood protection, ii to dam reservoirs for water storage, and basically, iii for the mere mountain soil conservation and agriculture protection. The profound objectives of each action are diverse and vary depending on the geomorphic context and local state of the sediment cascade, where the implementation takes place.

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The lack of sufficient understanding of soil erosion processes, sediment dis connectivity activation and torrential hazards propagation continues to make soil erosion prevention and torrent control complex topics with insufficient implementation criteria and long-term effect assessment methods.

Consequently, some projects still experience disappointing results due to many different reasons, such as poor construction quality, inadequate location or lack of adequate design criteria. In addition, these actions induce secondary effects e. This EGU session aims at gathering the whole community interested in human actions on control works and soil conservation techniques at the waterhed scale. Any contributions to the understanding of soil erosion control and sediment transport management based on detailed field experiences, high-quality laboratory works, validated numerical models and effectiveness assessment methods are welcome.

Using the knowledge gaps identified above as a starting point, the proposed EGU session wishes, for the third year, to join and share scientific and technical opinions from all around the world, related to the legacy effects of soil erosion control and open check-dam design criteria, highlighting the role of the complex interactions between ecological elements, geomorphic processes and engineering activities. Remarkable technological progress in remote sensing and geophysical surveying, together with the recent development of innovative data treatment techniques are providing new scientific opportunities to investigate landslide processes and hazards all over the world.

Remote sensing and geophysics, as complementary techniques for the characterization and monitoring of landslides, offer the possibility to effectively infer and correlate an improved information of the shallow -or even deep- geological layers for the development of conceptual and numerical models of slope instabilities.

Their ability to provide integrated information about geometry, rheological properties, water content, rate of deformation and time-varying changes of these parameters is ultimately controlling our capability to detect, model and predict landslide processes at different scales from site specific to regional studies and over multiple dimensions 2D, 3D and 4D.

The session will provide an overview of the progress and new scientific approaches of Earth Observation EO applications, as well as of surface- and borehole-based geophysical surveying for investigating landslides. A special emphasis is expected not only on the collection but also on the interpretation and use of high spatiotemporal resolution data to characterize the main components of slope stability and dynamics, including the type of material, geometrical and mechanical properties, depth of water table, saturation conditions and ground deformation over time.

The discussion of recent experiences and the use of advanced processing methods and innovative algorithms that integrate data from remote sensing and geophysics with other survey types are highly encouraged, especially with regard to their use on rapid mapping, characterizing, monitoring and modelling of landslide behaviour, as well as their integration on real-time Early Warning Systems and other prevention and protection initiatives.

We invited prof. Karst environments are characterized by distinctive landforms and unique hydrologic behaviors. Karst systems are commonly extremely complex, heterogeneous, and very difficult to manage because their formation and evolution are controlled by a wide range of geological, hydrological, geochemical and biological processes. Further, karst systems are extremely vulnerable due to the direct connection between the surface and subsurface compartments through conduit networks.

The great variability and unique connectivity may result in serious engineering problems: on one hand, karst groundwater resources are readily contaminated by pollution because of the rapidity of conduit flow; on the other hand, the presence of karst conduits that weakens the strength of the rock mass may lead to serious natural and human-induced hazards.

The plan and development of engineering projects in karst environments thus require: 1 an enhanced understanding of natural processes that govern the initiation and evolution of karst systems through both field and modelling approaches, and 2 specific interdisciplinary approaches aiming at at better assessing the associated uncertainties and minimizing the detrimental effects of hazardous processes and environmental problems.

It also aims to discuss various characterization and modelling methods applied in each specific research domain, with their consequences on the understanding of the whole process of karst genesis and functioning. The routing of sediment and water through the channel network initiates complex process-form interactions as the river bed and banks adjust to changes in flow conditions.

Despite their ubiquity, little is known about the landform-driven morphodynamic interactions taking place within the channel that ultimately determine patterns of sedimentation and changes of channel form. Furthermore, an understanding of how these process-form interactions scale with the size of the fluvial system is also currently lacking. Recent technological advances now afford us the opportunity to study and to quantify these process-form interactions in detail across a range of spatial and temporal scales.

This session aims to bring together interdisciplinary researchers working across field, experimental, and numerical modelling approaches who are advancing methods and providing new insights into: i sediment transport and morphodynamic functioning of fluvial systems, ii evaluating morphological change at variable spatial and temporal scales, such as at event vs. We particularly welcome applications which investigate the morphodynamic response of fluvial systems in all types and sizes and we specifically would like to encourage submissions from early career researchers and students.

Particle- to catchment- scale dynamics of high-latitude post-glacial streams. Fluvial morphodynamics are characterized by the coupling between sediment supply, storage, and transport, as well as between flow resistance and bed morphology. However, the relationships between these characteristics vary across fluvial landscapes.

Specifically in steep channels, the threshold for motion has been shown to change significantly in space and time, and possibly with slope, and observed sediment transport rates are lower than predicted based on classic equations developed for lowland channels. Macro-roughness elements including large-wood structures complicate estimates of flow resistance and boundary shear stress, and hillslope-channel coupling adds to system disorder. The poor performance of traditional sediment transport approaches consequently limits the utility of channel evolution models to predict the morphology of steep mountain rivers — the lower boundary control of mountainous terrain evolution.

This session welcomes field, experimental, theoretical, and modelling efforts aimed at improving 1 our understanding of the morphodynamics of mountain river channels, as well as 2 predictive models for sediment transport in mountainous channels. In addition, we welcome studies spanning a range of spatial scales, from the grain to landscape scale. In recent decades, quantitative methods have become increasingly important in the field of palaeoenvironmental, palaeoclimatic and palaeohydrological reconstruction, due to the need for comparison between different records and to provide boundary conditions for computational modelling.

Continental environmental archives e. The wide variety of archive types available on land also allows for intercomparison and ground-truthing of results from different techniques and different proxies, and multi-proxy reconstructions from the same archive can disentangle local and supra-regional environmental conditions.

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This approach is particularly useful for the reconstruction of hydrological dynamics, which are challenging to reconstruct due to their high spatial variability, signal buffering, nonlinearities and uncertainties in the response of available paleoclimate archives and proxies. For example, climate-independent factors such as land cover change can affect the local to regional water availability recorded in proxies.

This session aims to highlight recent advances in the use of innovative and quantitative proxies to reconstruct past environmental change on land. We present studies of various continental archives, including but not limited to carbonates caves, paleosols, snails , sediments lakes, rivers, alluvial fans , and biological proxies tree rings, fossil assemblages, plant biomarkers.

We also include reconstructions of temperature and hydrologic variability over large spatial scales and paleoclimate data assimilation. This session will provide a forum for discussing recent innovations and future directions in the development of terrestrial palaeoenvironmental proxies on seasonal to multi-millennial timescales.

We welcome studies of any continental archive, including but not limited to carbonates caves, paleosols, snails , sediments lakes, rivers, alluvial fans , ice, and biological proxies tree rings, fossil assemblages, plant biomarkers. We also welcome reconstructions of temperature and hydrologic variability over large spatial scales, including paleoclimate data assimilation studies. Synergistic approaches to respond to water, food and energy increasing needs, incorporating the need to hinder impacts on the environmental land and socio-economic realities, are essential to attain the UN Sustainable Development Goals 2, 6, 7 and Such nexus approach is highly challenging given the substantial and highly contextual interdependencies between sectors.