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Suspended sediment delivery from small catchments to the Bay of Biscay. What are the controlling factors?

Zabaleta, Ane and Antigüedad, Iñaki and Barrio, Irantzu and Probst, Jean-Luc Suspended sediment delivery from small catchments to the Bay of Biscay. What are the controlling factors? (2016) Earth Surface Processes and Landforms, 41 (13). 1813-2004. ISSN 1096-9837

(Document in English)

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/esp.3957


The transport and yield of suspended sediment (SS) in catchments all over the world have long been topics of great interest. This paper addresses the scarcity of information on SS delivery and its environmental controls in small catchments, especially in the Atlantic region. Five steep catchments in Gipuzkoa (Basque Country) with areas between 56 and 796 km2 and that drain into the Bay of Biscay were continuously monitored for precipitation, discharge and suspended sediment concentration (SSC) in their outlets from 2006 to 2013. Environmental characteristics such as elevation, slope, land uses, soil depth and erodibility of the lithology were also calculated. The analysis included consideration of uncertainties in the SSC calibration models in the final suspended sediment yield (SSY) estimations. The total delivery of sediments from the catchments into the Bay of Biscay and its standard deviation was 272 200 ± 38 107 t·yr-1, or 151±21 t·km-2·yr-1, and the SSYs ranged from 46 ± 0.48 to 217±106 t·km-2·yr-1. Hydro-climatic variables and catchment areas do not explain the spatial variability found in SSY, whereas land use (especially non-native plantations) and management (human impacts) appear to be the main factors that control this variability. Obtaining long-term measurements on sediment delivery would allow for the effects of environmental and human induced changes on SS fluxes to better detected.However, the data provided in this paper offer valuable and quantitative information that will enable decision-makers to make more informed decisions on land management whime considering the effects of the delivery of SS.

Item Type:Article
Additional Information:Thanks to Wiley editor. The definitive version is available at http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com. The original PDF of the article can be found at Wiley Oneline Library website : http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/esp.3957/abstract
Audience (journal):International peer-reviewed journal
Uncontrolled Keywords:
Institution:French research institutions > Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - CNRS (FRANCE)
Université de Toulouse > Institut National Polytechnique de Toulouse - Toulouse INP (FRANCE)
Other partners > Observatoire Régional de l’Air en Midi-Pyrénées - ORAMIP (FRANCE)
Université de Toulouse > Université Toulouse III - Paul Sabatier - UT3 (FRANCE)
Laboratory name:
Department of Land Planning and Environment of the Gipuzkoa Provincial Councilu - The University of the Basque Country (UFI 11/26) - The Basque Government (Consolidated Groups IT 598-13 and IT 620-13) - Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation (CGL2011-26236) - Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness (CAUSE project, CTM2012-39500)
Deposited On:18 Jan 2017 09:39

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