Series: Routledge Studies in Physical Geography and the Environment Volume: 1
496 pages, Illus, figs, tabs
Environmental Issues in the Mediterranean reviews both physical and social aspects of this region, in relation to its environment. The Mediterranean has been subject to changing human settlement and land use patterns for millennia, and has a history of human exploitation in an inherently unstable landscape. It has been at the centre of vast empires, since before Roman times and is still frequently affected by volcanic eruptions and earthquakes. It is characterised and set apart from other areas by the presence of the Mediterranean Sea and its current environmental problems, can have social and economic impacts for, or common to, the whole region. An introduction to the Mediterranean region, its history, physical and human geography and its environmental problems is given. The book then goes on to examine: * The Dynamic Environment - climate variables and fluctuations, vegetation, the hydrological cycle of the basin and its watershed, processes of erosion, fire and the Mediterranean Sea * The Human Impact on the Environment - prehistoric and historic land use, traditional agriculture, rural and urban settlement and use of mineral resources * The Mediterranean Environment Under Increasing Pressure - the present human landscape, changes in agriculture in the 20th century, the impact of depopulation, pollution, water resources, desertification and potential climatic change. It then concludes with a discussion of the regions on-going environmental issues of water resources, land degradation, agricultural intensification and tourism, and considers how these can be approached using management techniques and national and regional policies. Environmental Issues in the Mediterranean is ideal for students who are studying a range of environmental issues, but want to see them linked within one regional context. It also contains a wealth of background information for those going on a field trip to the Mediterranean. It is highly illustrated with plates, line figures and maps and has case studies from countries throughout the region. Chapter summaries, suggestions for further reading and topics for discussion are also included.
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