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Title: Foredune responses to the impact of aggregate extraction in an arid aeolian sedimentary system
Authors: San Romualdo Collado, Abel 
Marrero Rodríguez, Néstor 
García Romero, Leví Aday 
Delgado‐Fernández, Irene
Viera‐Pérez, Manuel
Domínguez Brito, Antonio Carlos 
Cabrera Gámez, Jorge 
UNESCO Clasification: 250618 Sedimentología
250607 Geomorfología
250604 Geología ambiental
3308 Ingeniería y tecnología del medio ambiente
Keywords: Airflow dynamics
Biogeomorphological processes
Arid coastal dunes
Human impact
Environmental patterns
Issue Date: 2022
Project: Análisis de Procesos Naturales y Humanos Asociados A Los Sistemas Playa-Duna de Canarias 
Journal: Earth Surface Processes and Landforms 
Abstract: Coastal dunes have long suffered the effects of human interventions that have altered the landscape and operation of these ecosystems. Aggregate extractions have been shown to modify the biogeomorphological processes in aeolian sedimentary systems. The impacts associated to aggregate extraction include the reduction of available sediment and changes to the topography and vegetation patterns, thereby altering the sedimentary dynamics and limiting the recovery capacity of the dunefield. The aim of this paperis to analyse the environmental effects produced by historical aggregate extraction in the foredune area of an arid aeolian sedimentary system (El Médano, Tenerife, Spain) through a study of the airflow dynamics and spatial distribution of vegetation, sediment and topographic changes. The methodology was designed with two temporal scales: i) a long-term approach which compares historical sources and current ones; and ii) a short-term approach through experimental data collection to characterize the presentfunctioning. For the latter, a field study was carried out in June 2021, collecting wind speed and direction data at a height of 0.50, sediment data (sand sheet thickness, grain size and sorting), and vegetation data (cover and species richness) at forty sample points. The main results show that when the anthropic stress ceased the foredune did not follow a natural environmental pattern, and that the way it functions at the present time is determined by the changes induced by the aggregate extraction. Changes include alterations to the topography, the creation of a lagoon, and the generation of an aeolian deflation area and flow acceleration zones with the associated sand transport. This research contributes to an understanding of the environmental consequences of aggregate extractions on the foredunes of arid aeolian sedimentary systems and can enable the relevant authorities to make better-informed decisions that help the management ofthese ecosystems.
ISSN: 0197-9337
DOI: 10.1002/esp.5419
Source: Earth Surface Processes and Landforms [ISSN 0197-9337], May 2022
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