Special Issue "Natural Ecosystems Management and Mountain Engineering Works as Tools for Runoff and Sediment Yield Control"

A special issue of Water (ISSN 2073-4441). This special issue belongs to the section "Water Erosion and Sediment Transport".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (4 July 2021).

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Dimitrios Myronidis
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, School of Forestry and Natural Environment, University Campus 54124, Po Box 268, Thessaloniki, Greece
Interests: hydrology; check-dam modeling; erosion assessment and control; discharge regulation; flood and drought risk analysis
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Dr. Sopan Patil
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
School of Natural Sciences, Bangor University, Bangor LL57 2UW, UK
Interests: catchment hydrology; landscape hydrology; climate change adaptation; land use and land cover change; hydrological modeling
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Dr. Milan Gocić
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
University of Nis, Faculty of Civil Engineering and Architecture, Aleksandra Medvedeva 14, 18000 Nis, Serbia
Interests: hydroinformatics; drought risk analysis; data analysis; artificial intelligence
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Forests and natural ecosystems provide human society with some key services such as runoff and sediment control. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in its Summary for Policymakers report (2019) projects that global warming might exacerbate the land degradation process and increase rainfall intensity and flooding in many parts of the world. Moreover, the universal forest fire regime will be amplified in response to global temperature increase, which suggests that the landscape will be more vulnerable to both land degradation and flooding. Changes in the frequency, intensity, and magnitude of extreme storm event patterns are going to affect both natural ecosystems and the built environment. Frequent severe storm events will intensify the sediment transport to downstream areas and magnify the floodplain zones, whilst improper anthropogenic interventions could further deteriorate the situation.

This Special Issue addresses the subject of controlling runoff and sediment transport in mountainous areas through rational management of natural ecosystems and the establishment of small-scale mountain engineering works. These solutions are likely to protect both natural ecosystems and the downstream built environments for the benefit of society. This coverage anticipates an important boost to the current state-of-the-art research on runoff and sediment yield regulation at various spatial scales. We welcome research and synthesis contributions that emphasize and present the latest advances on issues such as natural ecosystem and arable land intelligent management, bio-engineering works on arable lands, instream regulation works, check-dam modeling, retention basin and stock pond planning, post-fire rehabilitation treatments, policy measures to conserve water and soil, works at headwaters and hillslopes, wise reforestation templates, riparian vegetation management, proper road planning for sediment and water yield control, smart grazing patterns, and landslide prevention techniques.

Dr. Dimitrios Myronidis
Dr. Sopan Patil
Dr. Milan Gocić
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Water is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • natural ecosystems management
  • bio-engineering works
  • instream regulation works
  • works on headwaters and hillslopes
  • post-fire rehabilitation techniques

Published Papers (3 papers)

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Research

Article
A Geographical Information Approach for Forest Maintenance Operations with Emphasis on the Drainage Infrastructure and Culverts
Water 2021, 13(10), 1408; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13101408 - 18 May 2021
Viewed by 699
Abstract
Forest operations engineering deals with all the essential infrastructure operations aiming at the efficient management of forested areas, which constitutes a prerequisite for the development of mountainous economies. Thus, the need for addressing this objective in an effective way, in conjunction with other [...] Read more.
Forest operations engineering deals with all the essential infrastructure operations aiming at the efficient management of forested areas, which constitutes a prerequisite for the development of mountainous economies. Thus, the need for addressing this objective in an effective way, in conjunction with other issues associated with the protection and preservation of forest wealth, is of utmost importance. There are a whole range of forest operations for which a decision-making web-tool can potentially be utilized. This paper introduces an online decision-making tool for managing forest roads, which uses information derived from rainfall-runoff simulation. The proposed tool can be used to provide information about forest works maintenance and damage prevention in a forest environment. Furthermore, the tool assists in visualizing forest operations and achieves the optimization of their management. The development of the decision-making tool is also described, and a real case study (the Koupa watershed) is presented in detail to demonstrate its application and resulting advantages. The rainfall-runoff simulation was conducted for ten sub-basins in order to evaluate the efficiency of the corresponding culverts in the Koupa watershed. Full article
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Article
Analysis of the Impact of Land Use Changes on Soil Erosion Intensity and Sediment Yield Using the IntErO Model in the Talar Watershed of Iran
Water 2021, 13(6), 881; https://doi.org/10.3390/w13060881 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 788
Abstract
Land use change is known as one of the main influencing factors on soil erosion and sediment production processes. The objective of the article is to study on how land use change impacts on soil erosion by using Intensity of Erosion and Outflow [...] Read more.
Land use change is known as one of the main influencing factors on soil erosion and sediment production processes. The objective of the article is to study on how land use change impacts on soil erosion by using Intensity of Erosion and Outflow (IntErO) as a process-oriented soil erosion model. The study has been conducted under land use changes within the period of 1991–2014 in the Talar watershed located in northern Iran. The GIS environment was used to prepare the required maps including Digital Elevation Model (DEM), geology, land use, soil, and drainage network. The climatology data including average annual precipitation and air temperature as well as the volume of torrential rain were extracted from the data of meteorological stations located inside and around the study watershed. The results indicates that, within the period of 1991–2014, the forest area decreased by 12,478.04 ha (6%), while the other land uses including rainfed agriculture, rangeland, irrigated agriculture, and residential area increased by 7248.25, 4481.05, 476.00, and 273.95 ha, respectively. The estimated outflow with 100 year return interval was 432.14 m3 s−1 in 1991, which increased to 446.91 m3 s−1 in 2014. It can be concluded that the probability of larger and/or more frequent floods waves in the Talar River is expected to increase. In addition, the amount of production of erosion material (gross erosion) in the watershed increased from 1,918,186 to 2,183,558 m3 yr−1, and the real soil losses per year (sediment yield) of the watershed increased from 440,482.4 to 501,421.3 m3 yr−1. The results clearly emphasized how the lack of appropriate land management and planning leads to increase the maximum flow discharge and sediment yield of the watershed. Full article
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Article
Assessment of the Visual Quality of Sediment Control Structures in Mountain Streams
Water 2020, 12(11), 3116; https://doi.org/10.3390/w12113116 - 06 Nov 2020
Viewed by 491
Abstract
Sediment control structures such as check dams, groundsills, and revetments are commonly used to balance sediment transport. In this study, we investigated the visual quality of sediment control structures that have been installed to manage mountain streams by analyzing images from the Soil [...] Read more.
Sediment control structures such as check dams, groundsills, and revetments are commonly used to balance sediment transport. In this study, we investigated the visual quality of sediment control structures that have been installed to manage mountain streams by analyzing images from the Soil and Water Conservation Bureau (SWCB) of Taiwan. We used visual preference (P) as an indicator in the evaluation of visual quality and considered two softscape elements and four cognitive factors associated with P. The two softscape elements were the visible body of water and vegetation, which were represented by the percentage of visible water (WR) and the percentage of visible greenery (GR). We considered four cognitive factors: naturalness, harmony, vividness, and closeness. Using a questionnaire-based survey, we asked 212 experts and laypeople to indicate their visual preferences (P) for the images. We examined the associations of the P ratings with cognitive factors and softscape elements and then established an empirical relationship between P and the cognitive factors using multiple regression analysis. The results showed that the subjects’ visual preferences were strongly affected by the harmony factor; the subjects preferred the proportion of softscape elements to be 30% WR and 40% GR for optimal harmony, naturalness, and visual quality of the sediment control structures. We discuss the visual indicators, visual aesthetic experiences, and applications of the empirical relationship, and offer insights into the study’s implications. Full article
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