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Sample records for arid environments relevant

  1. PRESERVATION OF ARCHAEOLOGICAL MATERIALS IN ARID ENVIRONMENTS RELEVANT TO YUCCA MOUNTAIN

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    N. Chapman, A. Dansie, C. McCombie

    2006-01-01

    The objective of this study was to evaluate archaeological materials from underground openings or shallow burial in arid environments relevant to Yucca Mountain and to draw conclusions about how their state and their environment of preservation could be of relevance to design and operational aspects of the high-level waste repository. The study has evaluated materials from cultures in the arid regions of the ancient Middle East and compared them with the preservation of ancient materials in dry cave sites in the Great Basin desert area of Nevada. The emphasis has been on materials found in undisturbed underground openings such as caves and un-backfilled tombs. Long-term preservation of such materials in underground openings and the stability of the openings themselves provide useful analogue information that serves as a reference point for considering the operation and evolution of the Yucca Mountain repository. Being able to shed light, by close physical and environmental analogy, on what happens in underground openings over many thousands of years provides valuable underpinning to illustrations of expected system performance and offers pointers towards optimizing repository system and operational design

  2. Isolation of microalgae species from arid environments and ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Isolation of microalgae species from arid environments and evaluation of their potentials for biodiesel production. ... African Journal of Biotechnology. Journal Home · ABOUT THIS JOURNAL · Advanced Search · Current Issue · Archives.

  3. Functionally relevant climate variables for arid lands: Aclimatic water deficit approach for modelling desert shrub distributions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thomas E. Dilts; Peter J. Weisberg; Camie M. Dencker; Jeanne C. Chambers

    2015-01-01

    We have three goals. (1) To develop a suite of functionally relevant climate variables for modelling vegetation distribution on arid and semi-arid landscapes of the Great Basin, USA. (2) To compare the predictive power of vegetation distribution models based on mechanistically proximate factors (water deficit variables) and factors that are more mechanistically removed...

  4. Improved climate risk simulations for rice in arid environments

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oort, van P.A.J.; Vries, de M.; Yoshida, H.; Saito, K.

    2015-01-01

    We integrated recent research on cardinal temperatures for phenology and early leaf growth, spikelet formation, early morning flowering, transpirational cooling, and heat- and cold-induced sterility into an existing to crop growth model ORYZA2000. We compared for an arid environment observed

  5. Predicting the future impact of droughts on ungulate populations in arid and semi-arid environments.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Clare Duncan

    Full Text Available Droughts can have a severe impact on the dynamics of animal populations, particularly in semi-arid and arid environments where herbivore populations are strongly limited by resource availability. Increased drought intensity under projected climate change scenarios can be expected to reduce the viability of such populations, yet this impact has seldom been quantified. In this study, we aim to fill this gap and assess how the predicted worsening of droughts over the 21(st century is likely to impact the population dynamics of twelve ungulate species occurring in arid and semi-arid habitats. Our results provide support to the hypotheses that more sedentary, grazing and mixed feeding species will be put at high risk from future increases in drought intensity, suggesting that management intervention under these conditions should be targeted towards species possessing these traits. Predictive population models for all sedentary, grazing or mixed feeding species in our study show that their probability of extinction dramatically increases under future emissions scenarios, and that this extinction risk is greater for smaller populations than larger ones. Our study highlights the importance of quantifying the current and future impacts of increasing extreme natural events on populations and species in order to improve our ability to mitigate predicted biodiversity loss under climate change.

  6. Seed germination, seedling traits, and seed bank of the tree Moringa peregrina (Moringaceae) in a hyper-arid environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gomaa, Nasr H; Picó, F Xavier

    2011-06-01

    Water-limited hot environments are good examples of hyper-aridity. Trees are scarce in these environments but some manage to survive, such as the tree Moringa peregrina. Understanding how trees maintain viable populations in extremely arid environments may provide insight into the adaptive mechanisms by which trees cope with extremely arid weather conditions. This understanding is relevant to the current increasing aridity in several regions of the world. Seed germination experiments were conducted to assess variation in seed mass, seed germination, and seedling traits of Moringa peregrina plants and the correlations among these traits. A seed burial experiment was also designed to study the fate of M. peregrina seeds buried at two depths in the soil for two time periods. On average, seeds germinated in three days and seedling shoots grew 0.7 cm per day over three weeks. Larger seeds decreased germination time and increased seedling growth rates relative to smaller seeds. Seeds remained quiescent in the soil and germination was very high at both depths and burial times. The after-ripening time of Moringa peregrina seeds is short and seeds germinate quickly after imbibition. Plants of M. peregrina may increase in hyper-arid environments from seeds with larger mass, shorter germination times, and faster seedling growth rates. The results also illustrate the adjustment in allocation to seed biomass and correlations among seed and seedling traits that allows M. peregrina to be successful in coping with aridity in its environment.

  7. Aquaculture and mangrove ecosys of temproductivity in arid and semi-arid Balochistan coastal environments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Khattak, M.I.

    2005-01-01

    A survey of coastal shrimp-pond operations, and the structure and functioning of coastal mangrove forest ecosystems with particular reference to Ecuador, indicates that certain physical parameters may be good predictors of key biological processes. The most important factors are those associated with the regional water balance, tidal and surface water circulation patterns, and the physicochemical properties of the underlying soils. One important conclusion to emerge from the analyses is that at both regional and local levels, well-developed and productive mangrove forest areas often represent the least desirable sites for the construction and operation of commercial shrimp ponds. In certain regards semi-arid and arid coastal environments where mangroves are poorly developed, shrimp ponds that are constructed on barren mud flats and inland salt pans appear to have the potential to produce higher yields of shrimp with fewer management problems and at a relatively lower production cost. The data and research results from coast of Baluchistan and elsewhere are briefly summarized to suggest why productive mangrove ecosystems to not make the best areas in which to obtain maximum shrimp-pond yields. (author)

  8. Improved climate risk simulations for rice in arid environments.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pepijn A J van Oort

    Full Text Available We integrated recent research on cardinal temperatures for phenology and early leaf growth, spikelet formation, early morning flowering, transpirational cooling, and heat- and cold-induced sterility into an existing to crop growth model ORYZA2000. We compared for an arid environment observed potential yields with yields simulated with default ORYZA2000, with modified subversions of ORYZA2000 and with ORYZA_S, a model developed for the region of interest in the 1990s. Rice variety 'IR64' was sown monthly 15-times in a row in two locations in Senegal. The Senegal River Valley is located in the Sahel, near the Sahara desert with extreme temperatures during day and night. The existing subroutines underestimated cold stress and overestimated heat stress. Forcing the model to use observed spikelet number and phenology and replacing the existing heat and cold subroutines improved accuracy of yield simulation from EF = -0.32 to EF =0.70 (EF is modelling efficiency. The main causes of improved accuracy were that the new model subversions take into account transpirational cooling (which is high in arid environments and early morning flowering for heat sterility, and minimum rather than average temperature for cold sterility. Simulations were less accurate when also spikelet number and phenology were simulated. Model efficiency was 0.14 with new heat and cold routines and improved to 0.48 when using new cardinal temperatures for phenology and early leaf growth. The new adapted subversion of ORYZA2000 offers a powerful analytic tool for climate change impact assessment and cropping calendar optimisation in arid regions.

  9. Archaeology of Arid Environments Points to Management Options for Yucca Mountain

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    N. Chapman; A. Dansie; C. McCombie

    2006-01-01

    As with all planned repositories for spent fuel, the critical period over which Yucca Mountain needs to provide isolation is the first hundreds to thousands of years after the fuel is emplaced, when it is at its most hazardous. Both the original and the proposed new EPA standards highlight the central importance of this performance period by focusing on repository behavior during the first 10,000 years. Archaeology has a lot to tell us about the behavior of materials and structures over this time period. There have been numerous studies of archaeological artifacts in conditions relevant to the groundwater saturated environments that are a feature of most international geological disposal concepts, but relatively few in arid environments like that of the Nevada desert. However, there is much information to be gleaned, not only from classic archaeological areas in the Middle East and around the Mediterranean but also, perhaps surprisingly to some, from Nevada itself. Our recent study evaluated archaeological materials from underground openings and shallow burial in arid environments relevant to Yucca Mountain, drawing conclusions about how their state and their environment of preservation could help to assess design and operational options for the high-level waste repository

  10. Feasibility of groundwater recharge dam projects in arid environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jaafar, H. H.

    2014-05-01

    A new method for determining feasibility and prioritizing investments for agricultural and domestic recharge dams in arid regions is developed and presented. The method is based on identifying the factors affecting the decision making process and evaluating these factors, followed by determining the indices in a GIS-aided environment. Evaluated parameters include results from field surveys and site visits, land cover and soils data, precipitation data, runoff data and modeling, number of beneficiaries, domestic irrigation demand, reservoir objectives, demography, reservoirs yield and reliability, dam structures, construction costs, and operation and maintenance costs. Results of a case study on more than eighty proposed dams indicate that assessment of reliability, annualized cost/demand satisfied and yield is crucial prior to investment decision making in arid areas. Irrigation demand is the major influencing parameter on yield and reliability of recharge dams, even when only 3 months of the demand were included. Reliability of the proposed reservoirs as related to their standardized size and net inflow was found to increase with increasing yield. High priority dams were less than 4% of the total, and less priority dams amounted to 23%, with the remaining found to be not feasible. The results of this methodology and its application has proved effective in guiding stakeholders for defining most favorable sites for preliminary and detailed design studies and commissioning.

  11. Agave: a biofuel feedstock for arid and semi-arid environments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gross, Stephen; Martin, Jeffrey; Simpson, June; Wang, Zhong; Visel, Axel

    2011-05-31

    Efficient production of plant-based, lignocellulosic biofuels relies upon continued improvement of existing biofuel feedstock species, as well as the introduction of newfeedstocks capable of growing on marginal lands to avoid conflicts with existing food production and minimize use of water and nitrogen resources. To this end, specieswithin the plant genus Agave have recently been proposed as new biofuel feedstocks. Many Agave species are adapted to hot and arid environments generally unsuitable forfood production, yet have biomass productivity rates comparable to other second-generation biofuel feedstocks such as switchgrass and Miscanthus. Agavesachieve remarkable heat tolerance and water use efficiency in part through a Crassulacean Acid Metabolism (CAM) mode of photosynthesis, but the genes andregulatory pathways enabling CAM and thermotolerance in agaves remain poorly understood. We seek to accelerate the development of agave as a new biofuelfeedstock through genomic approaches using massively-parallel sequencing technologies. First, we plan to sequence the transcriptome of A. tequilana to provide adatabase of protein-coding genes to the agave research community. Second, we will compare transcriptome-wide gene expression of agaves under different environmentalconditions in order to understand genetic pathways controlling CAM, water use efficiency, and thermotolerance. Finally, we aim to compare the transcriptome of A.tequilana with that of other Agave species to gain further insight into molecular mechanisms underlying traits desirable for biofuel feedstocks. These genomicapproaches will provide sequence and gene expression information critical to the breeding and domestication of Agave species suitable for biofuel production.

  12. Mining the Agave Microbiome for adaptions to arid environments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Coleman-Derr, Devin; Wojke, Tanja; North, Gretchen; Partida-Martinez, Laila; DeAngeli, Kristen; Clingenpeel, Scott; Gross, Stephen; Tringe, Susannah; Visel, Axel

    2013-03-25

    A major challenge facing the biofuels industry is the identification of high-yield plant feedstocks that can be cultivated with minimal resource inputs without competing for land and water supplies with existing food crops. Recent research has demonstrated that the Agave plant, cultivated in Mexico and Southwestern United States for the production of fiber and alcohol, meets these criteria1. Agaves grow on non-arable rocky soils in regions characterized by prolonged drought and extreme temperatures, due in part to physiological adaptions that prevent excess water-loss in arid environments2. Plant-microbial symbioses can play a role in helping plants adapt to heat and drought stress, increasing the accessibility of soil nutrients, or compete with plant pathogens3. Whether agaves have similar beneficial microbe interactions in their native environment is unknown. We aim to provide a comprehensive characterization of the Agave microbiome, with the goal of identifying specific community members that may contribute to Agave biotic and abiotic stress tolerance

  13. Global patterns and environmental controls of perchlorate and nitrate co-occurrence in arid and semi-arid environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, W Andrew; Böhlke, John Karl; Andraski, Brian J.; Fahlquist, Lynne S.; Bexfield, Laura M.; Eckardt, Frank D.; Gates, John B.; Davila, Alfonso F.; McKay, Christopher P.; Rao, Balaji; Sevanthi, Ritesh; Rajagopalan, Srinath; Estrada, Nubia; Sturchio, Neil C.; Hatzinger, Paul B.; Anderson, Todd A.; Orris, Greta J.; Betancourt, Julio L.; Stonestrom, David A.; Latorre, Claudio; Li, Yanhe; Harvey, Gregory J.

    2015-01-01

    Natural perchlorate (ClO4−) is of increasing interest due to its wide-spread occurrence on Earth and Mars, yet little information exists on the relative abundance of ClO4− compared to other major anions, its stability, or long-term variations in production that may impact the observed distributions. Our objectives were to evaluate the occurrence and fate of ClO4− in groundwater and soils/caliche in arid and semi-arid environments (southwestern United States, southern Africa, United Arab Emirates, China, Antarctica, and Chile) and the relationship of ClO4− to the more well-studied atmospherically deposited anions NO3−and Cl− as a means to understand the prevalent processes that affect the accumulation of these species over various time scales. ClO4− is globally distributed in soil and groundwater in arid and semi-arid regions on Earth at concentrations ranging from 10−1to 106 μg/kg. Generally, the ClO4− concentration in these regions increases with aridity index, but also depends on the duration of arid conditions. In many arid and semi-arid areas, NO3− and ClO4− co-occur at molar ratios (NO3−/ClO4−) that vary between ∼104and 105. We hypothesize that atmospheric deposition ratios are largely preserved in hyper-arid areas that support little or no biological activity (e.g. plants or bacteria), but can be altered in areas with more active biological processes including N2 fixation, N mineralization, nitrification, denitrification, and microbial ClO4− reduction, as indicated in part by NO3− isotope data. In contrast, much larger ranges of Cl−/ClO4− and Cl−/NO3−ratios indicate Cl− varies independently from both ClO4− and NO3−. The general lack of correlation between Cl− and ClO4− or NO3− implies that Cl− is not a good indicator of co-deposition and should be used with care when interpreting oxyanion cycling in arid systems. The Atacama Desert appears to be unique compared to all other terrestrial locations having a

  14. Global patterns and environmental controls of perchlorate and nitrate co-occurrence in arid and semi-arid environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, W. Andrew; Böhlke, J. K.; Andraski, Brian J.; Fahlquist, Lynne; Bexfield, Laura; Eckardt, Frank D.; Gates, John B.; Davila, Alfonso F.; McKay, Christopher P.; Rao, Balaji; Sevanthi, Ritesh; Rajagopalan, Srinath; Estrada, Nubia; Sturchio, Neil; Hatzinger, Paul B.; Anderson, Todd A.; Orris, Greta; Betancourt, Julio; Stonestrom, David; Latorre, Claudio; Li, Yanhe; Harvey, Gregory J.

    2015-09-01

    Natural perchlorate (ClO4-) is of increasing interest due to its wide-spread occurrence on Earth and Mars, yet little information exists on the relative abundance of ClO4- compared to other major anions, its stability, or long-term variations in production that may impact the observed distributions. Our objectives were to evaluate the occurrence and fate of ClO4- in groundwater and soils/caliche in arid and semi-arid environments (southwestern United States, southern Africa, United Arab Emirates, China, Antarctica, and Chile) and the relationship of ClO4- to the more well-studied atmospherically deposited anions NO3- and Cl- as a means to understand the prevalent processes that affect the accumulation of these species over various time scales. ClO4- is globally distributed in soil and groundwater in arid and semi-arid regions on Earth at concentrations ranging from 10-1 to 106 μg/kg. Generally, the ClO4- concentration in these regions increases with aridity index, but also depends on the duration of arid conditions. In many arid and semi-arid areas, NO3- and ClO4- co-occur at molar ratios (NO3-/ClO4-) that vary between ∼104 and 105. We hypothesize that atmospheric deposition ratios are largely preserved in hyper-arid areas that support little or no biological activity (e.g. plants or bacteria), but can be altered in areas with more active biological processes including N2 fixation, N mineralization, nitrification, denitrification, and microbial ClO4- reduction, as indicated in part by NO3- isotope data. In contrast, much larger ranges of Cl-/ClO4- and Cl-/NO3- ratios indicate Cl- varies independently from both ClO4- and NO3-. The general lack of correlation between Cl- and ClO4- or NO3- implies that Cl- is not a good indicator of co-deposition and should be used with care when interpreting oxyanion cycling in arid systems. The Atacama Desert appears to be unique compared to all other terrestrial locations having a NO3-/ClO4- molar ratio ∼103. The relative

  15. Human-environment interactions in arid Australia: a geoarchaeological approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fanning, Patricia C.; Holdaway, Simon J.; Rhodes, Edward J.

    2010-05-01

    The conventional approach to assessing the archaeological record in semi-arid regions of many parts of the world involves extensive survey of surface deposits thought to indicate the use of space by past peoples. However, such interpretations require a detailed understanding not only of how these deposits formed but also why they have survived. In summarizing more than a decade of research in western New South Wales, Australia, we argue that over much of semi-arid and arid Australia, archaeological ‘sites' are, in fact, accretion phenomena (or ‘palimpsests') that are not easily interpreted as the outcome of short-term behavioural events. Moreover, while the desert landscapes may appear to be unchanging, there is considerable variability in landsurface age, and hence the ‘availability' of archaeological surfaces. It cannot be assumed that stone artefact deposits, for example, from a similar location are of a similar age. To make behavioural inferences from these records, an approach is needed based on a geoarchaeological assessment of landscape potential, analyses able to detect human responses to environmental change, and analyses of artefacts that emphasise mobility rather than static settlement patterns. Landscape, paleoenvironmental and artifact assemblage data from our field area will be presented that demonstrates episodic occupation by highly mobile groups of people, most likely reacting to environmental changes and resource availability.

  16. Runoff controlling factors in various sized catchments in a semi-arid Mediterranean environment in Spain

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wit, A.M.W. de

    2001-01-01

    Understanding land degradation in a semi-arid Mediterranean environment is very difficult because of the contributing factors: precipitation, infiltration vegetation cover and discontinuity of flow and the temporal and spatial levels of resolution at which these factors are acting. Therefore it

  17. Energetics of the green iguana (Iguana iguana) in a semi-arid environment

    OpenAIRE

    van Marken Lichtenbelt, Wouter David

    1991-01-01

    Energy budgets in the herbivorous green iguana (Iguana Iguana) were studied from April 1985-October 1988 in a strongly seasonal environment on the semi-arid island Curacao (Netherlands Antilles) under the auspices of the CARMABI Foundation in cooperation with the State University of Groningen (The Netherlands). ... Zie: Summary

  18. Energetics of the green iguana (Iguana iguana) in a semi-arid environment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Marken Lichtenbelt, Wouter David

    1991-01-01

    Energy budgets in the herbivorous green iguana (Iguana Iguana) were studied from April 1985-October 1988 in a strongly seasonal environment on the semi-arid island Curacao (Netherlands Antilles) under the auspices of the CARMABI Foundation in cooperation with the State University of Groningen (The

  19. The challenges of rehabilitating denuded patches of a semi-arid environment in Kenya

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mganga, K.Z.; Nyangito, M.M.; Musimba, N.K.R.; Nyariki, D.M.; Mwangombe, A.W.; Ekaya, W.N.; Muiri, W.M.; Clavel, D.; Francis, J.; Kaufmann, Von R.; Verhagen, J.

    2010-01-01

    Land degradation is a major problem in the semi-arid environments of Sub-Saharan Africa. Fighting land degradation is essential to ensure the sustainable and long-term productivity of the habited semiarid lands. In Kenya, grass reseeding technology has been used to combat land degradation. However,

  20. Adaptive wetland management in an uncertain and changing arid environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rebekah Downard

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available Wetlands in the arid western United States provide rare and critical migratory bird habitat and constitute a critical nexus within larger social-ecological systems (SES where multiple changing land-use and water-use patterns meet. The Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge in Utah, USA, presents a case study of the ways that wetland managers have created adaptive management strategies that are responsive to the social and hydrological conditions of the agriculture-dominated SES within which they are located. Managers have acquired water rights and constructed infrastructure while cultivating collaborative relationships with other water users to increase the adaptive capacity of the region and decrease conflict. Historically, water management involved diversion and impoundment of water within wetland units timed around patterns of agricultural water needs. In the last 20 years, managers have learned from flood and drought events and developed a long-term adaptive management plan that specifies alternative management actions managers can choose each year based on habitat needs and projected water supply. Each alternative includes habitat goals and target wetland water depth. However, wetland management adapted to agricultural return-flow availability may prove insufficient as population growth and climate change alter patterns of land and water use. Future management will likely depend more on negotiation, collaboration, and learning from social developments within the SES than strictly focusing on water management within refuge boundaries. To face this problem, managers have worked to be included in negotiations with regional water users, a strategy that may prove instructive for other wetland managers in agriculture-dominated watersheds.

  1. Characterization of magnetically enhanced buried soil layer in arid environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petrovsky, E.; Grison, H.; Kapicka, A.; Silva, P. F.; Font, E.

    2011-12-01

    Magnetic susceptibility (MS) of soils, reflecting the presence of magnetite/maghemite, can be used in several environmental applications. Magnetic topsoil mapping is often used to outline areas polluted by atmospherically deposited dust. However, in these studies, the magnetically enhanced layer is usually shallow, some 5-6 cm under the surface. In our contribution, we present the case when the magnetic susceptibility is enhanced in deeper soil layers. Investigated soils are mostly sandy soils, from several localities in Portugal, in a zone with arid climate. Sample profiles were collected always in forests or forest stands with pines, cork oaks or eucalyptus trees in two areas: around the city of Sines (on the coast south of Lisbon) and around the city of Abrantes (inland, north-east of Lisbon). Both areas are presumably affected by one major source of pollution - power plant. Surface magnetic susceptibility measurements were performed by Bartington MS2D loop; values vary from 10 to 300 x 10-5 SI units. Vertical distribution of magnetic susceptibility was measured already in situ using the SM400 (ZHInstruments) on profiles about 40cm in length. Mass-specific MS was determined using Bartington MS2B dual frequency meter and Agico MFK1. Nine vertical profiles were selected for detailed analyses including the ARM, IRM and hysteresis measurements. Distinctly enhanced magnetic layers were detected in deeper horizons. This enhancement can be ascribed to several mechanisms. Migration of magnetic particles seems to be probable, as observed in our model experiments with sand columns. In coastal areas, the enhanced layer could be due to tsunami deposits, as described in other areas. Finally, in particular at sites close to power plants, the construction works followed by surface remediation have to be also considered as one of the possible mechanisms.

  2. An Overview of Biodegradation of LNAPLs in Coastal (Semi)-arid Environment.

    KAUST Repository

    Yadav, Brijesh Kumar

    2011-02-22

    Contamination of soil and water due to the release of light non-aqueous phase liquids (LNAPLs) is a ubiquitous problem. The problem is more severe in arid and semi-arid coastal regions where most of the petroleum production and related refinery industries are located. Biological treatment of these organic contaminated resources is receiving increasing interests and where applicable, can serve as a cost-effective remediation alternative. The success of bioremediation greatly depends on the prevailing environmental variables, and their remediation favoring customization requires a sound understanding of their integrated behavior on fate and transport of LNAPLs under site-specific conditions. The arid and semi-arid coastal sites are characterized by specific environmental extremes; primarily, varying low and high temperatures, high salinity, water table dynamics, and fluctuating soil moisture content. An understanding of the behavior of these environmental variables on biological interactions with LNAPLs would be helpful in customizing the bioremediation for restoring problematic sites in these regions. Therefore, this paper reviews the microbial degradation of LNAPLs in soil-water, considering the influences of prevailing environmental parameters of arid and semi-arid coastal regions. First, the mechanism of biodegradation of LNAPLs is discussed briefly, followed by a summary of popular kinetic models used by researchers for describing the degradation rate of these hydrocarbons. Next, the impact of soil moisture content, water table dynamics, and soil-water temperature on the fate and transport of LNAPLs are discussed, including an overview of the studies conducted so far. Finally, based on the reviewed information, a general conclusion is presented with recommendations for future research subjects on optimizing the bioremediation technique in the field under the aforesaid environmental conditions. The present review will be useful to better understand the

  3. Date palm (Phoenix dactylifera L.) leaves as biomonitors of atmospheric metal pollution in arid and semi-arid environments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Al-Khashman, Omar Ali, E-mail: omarkhashman@yahoo.com [Department of Environmental Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Al-Hussein Bin Talal University, P.O. Box (20), Ma' an-Jordan (Jordan); Al-Muhtaseb, Ala' a H.; Ibrahim, Khalid A. [Department of Chemical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Al-Hussein Bin Talal University, P.O. Box (20), Ma' an-Jordan (Jordan)

    2011-06-15

    The leaves of date palms were evaluated as a possible biomonitor of heavy metal contamination in Ma'an city, Jordan. Concentrations of (Fe), (Pb), (Zn), (Cu), (Ni), and (Cr) were determined in washed and unwashed leaves and soil samples collected from different sites with different degrees of metal contamination (urban, suburban, industrial, highway and rural sites); separate leaves were taken from outside the city to be used as a control sample. Samples collected from industrial sites were found to have high concentrations of all metals except those of Cu, Ni and Pb, which were found at high levels in the highway site samples which is associated with the road traffic. The difference between unwashed and washed samples showed that metal pollutants exist as contaminants, particularly Pb, Zn and Ni, which varied in concentration, depending on the source of the metal. - Highlights: > High metal concentration in plant samples and roadside soil was due to the heavy traffic. > The mean concentrations (C) were in the order: C{sub Fe} > C{sub Pb} > C{sub Zn} > C{sub Ni} > C{sub Cu} > C{sub Cr}. > Difference between unwashed and washed samples showed that pollutants exist as contaminants. - Date palm (Phoenix dactylifera L.) leaves can be used as an inexpensive biomonitor of the deposition, accumulation and distribution of heavy metal contamination in arid environments.

  4. Date palm (Phoenix dactylifera L.) leaves as biomonitors of atmospheric metal pollution in arid and semi-arid environments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Al-Khashman, Omar Ali; Al-Muhtaseb, Ala'a H.; Ibrahim, Khalid A.

    2011-01-01

    The leaves of date palms were evaluated as a possible biomonitor of heavy metal contamination in Ma'an city, Jordan. Concentrations of (Fe), (Pb), (Zn), (Cu), (Ni), and (Cr) were determined in washed and unwashed leaves and soil samples collected from different sites with different degrees of metal contamination (urban, suburban, industrial, highway and rural sites); separate leaves were taken from outside the city to be used as a control sample. Samples collected from industrial sites were found to have high concentrations of all metals except those of Cu, Ni and Pb, which were found at high levels in the highway site samples which is associated with the road traffic. The difference between unwashed and washed samples showed that metal pollutants exist as contaminants, particularly Pb, Zn and Ni, which varied in concentration, depending on the source of the metal. - Highlights: → High metal concentration in plant samples and roadside soil was due to the heavy traffic. → The mean concentrations (C) were in the order: C Fe > C Pb > C Zn > C Ni > C Cu > C Cr . → Difference between unwashed and washed samples showed that pollutants exist as contaminants. - Date palm (Phoenix dactylifera L.) leaves can be used as an inexpensive biomonitor of the deposition, accumulation and distribution of heavy metal contamination in arid environments.

  5. Physiological adjustments to arid and mesic environments in larks (Alaudidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tieleman, B Irene; Williams, Joseph B; Buschur, Michael E

    2002-01-01

    Because deserts are characterized by low food availability, high ambient temperature extremes, and absence of drinking water, one might expect that birds that live in these conditions exhibit a lower basal metabolic rate (BMR), reduced total evaporative water loss (TEWL), and greater ability to cope with high air temperatures than their mesic counterparts. To minimize confounding effects of phylogeny, we compared the physiological performance of four species of larks at ambient temperatures (T(a)'s) ranging from 0 degrees to 50 degrees C: hoopoe larks (Alaemon alaudipes) and Dunn's larks (Eremalauda dunni) live in hot and dry deserts, whereas skylarks (Alauda arvensis) and woodlarks (Lullula arborea) occur in temperate mesic areas. Mass-adjusted BMR and TEWL were indistinguishable between hoopoe lark and Dunn's lark and between skylark and woodlark. When grouping the data of the two desert larks in one set and the data of the two mesic larks in another, desert larks are shown to have 43% lower BMR levels and 27% lower TEWL values than the mesic species. Their body temperatures (T(b)'s) were 1.1 degrees C lower, and the minimal dry heat transfer coefficients (h) were 26% below values for the mesic larks. When T(a) exceeded T(b), the h of hoopoe larks and Dunn's larks was high and indistinguishable from h at 40 degrees C, in contrast to the prediction that h should be decreased to minimize heat gain through conductance, convection, or radiation from the environment when T(a) exceeds T(b).

  6. Effect of high ambient temperature on behavior of sheep under semi-arid tropical environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De, Kalyan; Kumar, Davendra; Saxena, Vijay Kumar; Thirumurugan, Palanisamy; Naqvi, Syed Mohammed Khursheed

    2017-07-01

    High environmental temperature is a major constraint in sheep production under semi-arid tropical environment. Behavior is the earliest indicator of animal's adaptation and responses to the environmental alteration. Therefore, the objective of this study was to assess the effects of high ambient temperature on the behavior of sheep under a semi-arid tropical environment. The experiment was conducted for 6 weeks on 16 Malpura cross (Garole × Malpura × Malpura (GMM)) rams. The rams were divided equally into two groups, designated as C and T. The rams of C were kept in comfortable environmental conditions served as control. The rams of T were exposed to a different temperature at different hours of the day in a climatic chamber, to simulate a high environmental temperature of summer in semi-arid tropic. The behavioral observations were taken by direct instantaneous observation at 15-min intervals for each animal individually. The feeding, ruminating, standing, and lying behaviors were recorded twice a week from morning (0800 hours) to afternoon (1700 hours) for 6 weeks. Exposure of rams to high temperature (T) significantly (P behavior of sheep which is directed to circumvent the effect of the stressor.

  7. Effect of high ambient temperature on behavior of sheep under semi-arid tropical environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    De, Kalyan; Kumar, Davendra; Saxena, Vijay Kumar; Thirumurugan, Palanisamy; Naqvi, Syed Mohammed Khursheed

    2017-07-01

    High environmental temperature is a major constraint in sheep production under semi-arid tropical environment. Behavior is the earliest indicator of animal's adaptation and responses to the environmental alteration. Therefore, the objective of this study was to assess the effects of high ambient temperature on the behavior of sheep under a semi-arid tropical environment. The experiment was conducted for 6 weeks on 16 Malpura cross (Garole × Malpura × Malpura (GMM)) rams. The rams were divided equally into two groups, designated as C and T. The rams of C were kept in comfortable environmental conditions served as control. The rams of T were exposed to a different temperature at different hours of the day in a climatic chamber, to simulate a high environmental temperature of summer in semi-arid tropic. The behavioral observations were taken by direct instantaneous observation at 15-min intervals for each animal individually. The feeding, ruminating, standing, and lying behaviors were recorded twice a week from morning (0800 hours) to afternoon (1700 hours) for 6 weeks. Exposure of rams to high temperature (T) significantly ( P animals of T spent significantly ( P behavior of sheep which is directed to circumvent the effect of the stressor.

  8. Seasonal behavioral responses of an arid-zone passerine in a hot environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pattinson, Nicholas B; Smit, Ben

    2017-10-01

    Many arid-zone animals have to forage under extremely hot conditions to maintain water and energy balance. The effect of high air temperatures (T air ) on the behavioral patterns of small endothermic animals-characterized by their high energy and water demands-will provide a valuable framework for understanding species vulnerability to climate warming. We determined the seasonal behavioral responses to changes in T air in a~10-g arid-zone passerine, the rufous-eared warbler (Malcorus pectoralis), in the Karoo semi-desert, South Africa. Rufous-eared warblers showed significant temperature-dependence in their behavior in summer, but not in winter. During summer, the warblers frequently experienced T air exceeding 40°C in the shade. For all observations 36°C, the warblers showed reductions in preening (40% decrease), foraging effort (56% decrease), and foraging success (15% decrease), as well as a significant increase in time spent engaged in evaporative cooling behavior. Moreover, as T air increased the warblers shifted increasingly off the ground and out of the full sun, into microsites in the shade (131% increase) and in shrubs (23% increase). In this regard, behavior varied seasonally, with the time spent in the shade 23% higher, and foraging effort 28% higher, in summer compared to winter across a range of moderate T air (15-30°C). Our findings emphasize the link between behavior and temperature in small birds inhabiting hot, arid environments, as well as the importance of understanding these responses for predicting biologically meaningful responses (and hence, vulnerability) of arid-zone avian communities to climactic shifts. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Characteristics and influencing factors of crop coefficient for drip-irrigated cotton under plastic mulch conditions in arid environment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ai, Zhipin; Yang, Yonghui; Wang, Qinxue

    2017-01-01

    agronomy practice such as plastic mulching and drip irrigation in arid environments. This study calculated and analyzed Kc of a drip-irrigated and plastic-mulched cotton field in Aksu Oasis of the arid Tarim River Basin, China, and its relationships with several crop-, soil- and management variables......-mulched condition already published, the Kc of mulched cotton for the entire growth season decreased by 16 to 39%. The largest reductions in Kc due to plastic mulch were found in the initial and developmental growth stage. Kc could be calculated by a third-degree polynomial model in relation to RGD, which...... significantly increased Kc, i.e., 29% on average, partly due to arid advection. This study provided up-to-date and detailed information on cotton crop coefficient under plastic mulching and drip irrigation conditions in arid environment, and it is useful for improved management of agricultural water resources....

  10. Human Thermal Comfort and Heat Stress in an Outdoor Urban Arid Environment: A Case Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. M. Abdel-Ghany

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available To protect humans from heat stress risks, thermal comfort and heat stress potential were evaluated under arid environment, which had never been made for such climate. The thermal indices THI, WBGT, PET, and UTCI were used to evaluate thermal comfort and heat stress. RayMan software model was used to estimate the PET, and the UTCI calculator was used for UTCI. Dry and wet bulb temperatures (Td, Tw, natural wet bulb temperature (Tnw, and globe temperature (Tg were measured in a summer day to be used in the calculation. The results showed the following. (i The thermal sensation and heat stress levels can be evaluated by either the PET or UTCI scales, and both are valid for extremely high temperature in the arid environment. (ii In the comfort zone, around 75% of individuals would be satisfied with the surrounding environment and feel comfortable during the whole day. (iii Persons are exposed to strong heat stress and would feel uncomfortable most of the daytime in summer. (iv Heat fatigue is expected with prolonged exposure to sun light and activity. (v During the daytime, humans should schedule their activities according to the highest permissible values of the WBGT to avoid thermal shock.

  11. Modelling and prediction of radionuclide migration from shallow, subgrade nuclear waste facilities in arid environments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Smith, A.; Ward, A.; Geldenhuis, S.

    1986-01-01

    Over the past fifteen years, prodigious efforts and significant advances have been made in methods of prediction of the migration rate of dissolved species in aqueous systems. Despite such work, there remain formidable obstacles in prediction of solute transport in the unsaturated zone over the long time periods necessarily related to the radionuclide bearing wastes. The objective of this paper is to consider the methods, issues and problems with the use of predictive solute transport models for radionuclide migration from nuclear waste disposal in arid environments, if and when engineering containment of the waste fails. Having considered the ability for long term solute prediction for a number of geological environments, the advantages of a disposal environment in which the solute transport process is diffusion controlled will be described

  12. Forecasting the Depletion of Transboundary Groundwater Resources in Hyper-Arid Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mazzoni, A.; Heggy, E.

    2014-12-01

    The increase in awareness about the overexploitation of transboundary groundwater resources in hyper-arid environments that occurred in the last decades has highlighted the need to better map, monitor and manage these resources. Climate change, economic and population growth are driving forces that put more pressure on these fragile but fundamental resources. The aim of our approach is to address the question of whether or not groundwater resources, especially non-renewable, could serve as "backstop" water resource during water shortage periods that would probably affect the drylands in the upcoming 100 years. The high dependence of arid regions on these resources requires prudent management to be able to preserve their fossil aquifers and exploit them in a more sustainable way. We use the NetLogo environment with the FAO Aquastat Database to evaluate if the actual trends of extraction, consumption and use of non-renewable groundwater resources would remain feasible with the future climate change impacts and the population growth scenarios. The case studies selected are three: the Nubian Sandstone Aquifer System, shared between Egypt, Libya, Sudan and Chad; the North Western Sahara Aquifer System, with Algeria, Tunisia and Libya and the Umm Radhuma Dammam Aquifer, in its central part, shared between Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Bahrain. The reason these three fossil aquifers were selected are manifold. First, they represent properly transboundary non-renewable groundwater resources, with all the implications that derive from this, i.e. the necessity of scientific and socio-political cooperation among riparians, the importance of monitoring the status of shared resources and the need to elaborate a shared management policy. Furthermore, each country is characterized by hyper-arid climatic conditions, which will be exacerbated in the next century by climate change and lead to probable severe water shortage periods. Together with climate change, the rate of population

  13. The potential water buffering capacity of urban green infrastructure in an arid environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Z.; Yang, J.

    2017-12-01

    Urban green infrastructure offers arid cities an attractive means of mitigation/adaptation to environmental challenges of elevated thermal stress, but imposes the requirement of outdoor irrigation that aggravates the stress of water resource management. Future development of cities is inevitably constrained by the limited availability of water resources, under challenges of emergent climate change and continuous population growth. This study used the Weather Research and Forecasting model with urban dynamics to assess the potential water buffering capacity of urban green infrastructure in arid environments and its implications for sustainable urban planning. The Phoenix metropolitan area, Arizona, United States, is adopted as a testbed with two hypothetical cases, viz. the water-saving and the fully-greening scenarios investigated. Modifications of the existing green infrastructure and irrigation practices are found to significantly influence the thermal environment of Phoenix. In addition, water saving by xeriscaping (0.77 ± 0.05 × 10^8 m^3) allows the region to support 19.8% of the annual water consumption by the projected 2.62 million population growth by 2050, at a cost of an increase in urban ambient temperature of about 1 o^C.

  14. A spatial pattern analysis of the halophytic species distribution in an arid coastal environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Badreldin, Nasem; Uria-Diez, J; Mateu, J; Youssef, Ali; Stal, Cornelis; El-Bana, Magdy; Magdy, Ahmed; Goossens, Rudi

    2015-05-01

    Obtaining information about the spatial distribution of desert plants is considered as a serious challenge for ecologists and environmental modeling due to the required intensive field work and infrastructures in harsh and remote arid environments. A new method was applied for assessing the spatial distribution of the halophytic species (HS) in an arid coastal environment. This method was based on the object-based image analysis for a high-resolution Google Earth satellite image. The integration of the image processing techniques and field work provided accurate information about the spatial distribution of HS. The extracted objects were based on assumptions that explained the plant-pixel relationship. Three different types of digital image processing techniques were implemented and validated to obtain an accurate HS spatial distribution. A total of 2703 individuals of the HS community were found in the case study, and approximately 82% were located above an elevation of 2 m. The micro-topography exhibited a significant negative relationship with pH and EC (r = -0.79 and -0.81, respectively, p < 0.001). The spatial structure was modeled using stochastic point processes, in particular a hybrid family of Gibbs processes. A new model is proposed that uses a hard-core structure at very short distances, together with a cluster structure in short-to-medium distances and a Poisson structure for larger distances. This model was found to fit the data perfectly well.

  15. Design as a way to develop a relevant urban environment ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Design as a way to develop a relevant urban environment. ... Futuristic ideas of young designers can become the first stage in solving these challenging tasks. ... the problems of a modern city: from space organization to leisure organization.

  16. Extreme precipitation variability, forage quality and large herbivore diet selection in arid environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cain, James W.; Gedir, Jay V.; Marshal, Jason P.; Krausman, Paul R.; Allen, Jamison D.; Duff, Glenn C.; Jansen, Brian; Morgart, John R.

    2017-01-01

    Nutritional ecology forms the interface between environmental variability and large herbivore behaviour, life history characteristics, and population dynamics. Forage conditions in arid and semi-arid regions are driven by unpredictable spatial and temporal patterns in rainfall. Diet selection by herbivores should be directed towards overcoming the most pressing nutritional limitation (i.e. energy, protein [nitrogen, N], moisture) within the constraints imposed by temporal and spatial variability in forage conditions. We investigated the influence of precipitation-induced shifts in forage nutritional quality and subsequent large herbivore responses across widely varying precipitation conditions in an arid environment. Specifically, we assessed seasonal changes in diet breadth and forage selection of adult female desert bighorn sheep Ovis canadensis mexicana in relation to potential nutritional limitations in forage N, moisture and energy content (as proxied by dry matter digestibility, DMD). Succulents were consistently high in moisture but low in N and grasses were low in N and moisture until the wet period. Nitrogen and moisture content of shrubs and forbs varied among seasons and climatic periods, whereas trees had consistently high N and moderate moisture levels. Shrubs, trees and succulents composed most of the seasonal sheep diets but had little variation in DMD. Across all seasons during drought and during summer with average precipitation, forages selected by sheep were higher in N and moisture than that of available forage. Differences in DMD between sheep diets and available forage were minor. Diet breadth was lowest during drought and increased with precipitation, reflecting a reliance on few key forage species during drought. Overall, forage selection was more strongly associated with N and moisture content than energy content. Our study demonstrates that unlike north-temperate ungulates which are generally reported to be energy-limited, N and moisture

  17. An Overview of Biodegradation of LNAPLs in Coastal (Semi)-arid Environment.

    KAUST Repository

    Yadav, Brijesh Kumar; Hassanizadeh, S Majid

    2011-01-01

    environmental variables, and their remediation favoring customization requires a sound understanding of their integrated behavior on fate and transport of LNAPLs under site-specific conditions. The arid and semi-arid coastal sites are characterized by specific

  18. Some aspects of research relevant to environment radiochemistry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chen Shi; Ma Mingxie

    1997-01-01

    The authors suggest some research aspects relevant to environmental radiochemistry from the view point of environmental protection and radiation protection: the migration behavior of radionuclides, their interaction with environment medium and their speciation in environment. The status and prospect of these aspects and the relationship between them are discussed

  19. Potential of Waste Water Use for Jatropha Cultivation in Arid Environments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Folkard Asch

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available Water is crucial for socio-economic development and healthy ecosystems. With the actual population growth and in view of future water scarcity, development calls for improved sectorial allocation of groundwater and surface water for domestic, agricultural and industrial use. Instead of intensifying the pressure on water resources, leading to conflicts among users and excessive pressure on the environment, sewage effluents, after pre-treatment, provide an alternative nutrient-rich water source for agriculture in the vicinity of cities. Water scarcity often occurs in arid and semiarid regions affected by droughts and large climate variability and where the choice of crop to be grown is limited by the environmental factors. Jatropha has been introduced as a potential renewable energy resource since it is claimed to be drought resistant and can be grown on marginal sites. Sewage effluents provide a source for water and nutrients for cultivating jatropha, a combined plant production/effluent treatment system. Nevertheless, use of sewage effluents for irrigation in arid climates carries the risk of salinization. Thus, potential irrigation with sewage effluents needs to consider both the water requirement of the crop and those needed for controlling salinity build-up in the top soil. Using data from a case study in Southern Morocco, irrigation requirements were calculated using CROPWAT 8.0. We present here crop evapotranspiration during the growing period, required irrigation, the resulting nutrient input and the related risk of salinization from the irrigation of jatropha with sewage effluent.

  20. Effects of soil properties on natural radio-nuclides concentration in arid environment: a case study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Khater, A.F.M.; Al-Sewaidan, H.A.I.; Al-Saif, A.S.; Diab, H.I.

    2008-01-01

    Soil samples were collected from an arid environment in the central region of Saudi Arabia, 28 samples from selected 14 locations in an agricultural farm. Two samples, one from cultivated land and the second from uncultivated land, of the same origin were collected from each location. This work aims at investigating the changes of soil properties due to dry-land use and its effects on naturally occurring radio-nuclides (NOR) concentration and distribution. The specific activity, in Bq/kg, of 226 Ra ( 238 U series), 228 gRa ( 232 Th series), 40 K and 137 Cs were measured using calibrated gamma-ray spectrometer. The soil physical and chemical properties [e.g. pH, EC, particle size distribution (clay, silt and sand percentages), CaCO 3 %, soluble cations (Ca, Mg, Na and K) and soluble anions (CO 3 , HCO 3 , Cl and SO 4 )] were determined. The radium equivalent activity, in Bq/kg, and absorbed dose rate one meter above the ground, in nGy/y, were calculated. Generally, there are not noticeable changes in soil properties due to agricultural activities or strong correlations between soil properties and NOR specific activities. That could be due to the sandy nature of the soil and the effects of adsorption-filtration processes on the behavior and the distribution pattern of NOR in arid environment. Therefore, the environmental impacts of different man-made activities on underground resources should be carefully considered due to the possible filtration behavior of different pollutants in dry-land environment. (author)(tk)

  1. Constraining the timing of palaeosol development in Iranian arid environments using OSL dating

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rashidi, Zakieh; Sohbati, Reza; Karimi, Alireza

    2018-01-01

    are compared to investigate the degree of bleaching of quartz OSL in individual samples at the time of deposition. A comparison between the quartz OSL and K-feldspar IR50 ages shows that 12 out of 15 samples were probably well-bleached prior to deposition. The 17 OSL ages constrain at least four broad phases......The ages of palaeosols in arid environments in Iran are constrained using the optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) signal from quartz. The luminescence properties of quartz OSL and K-feldspar infrared stimulated luminescence (IRSL) at 50 °C (IR50) and post-IR IRSL at 290 °C (pIRIR290) signals...

  2. Observations of cloud and rainfall enhancement over irrigated agriculture in an arid environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Carreras, Luis; Marsham, John H.; Spracklen, Dominick V.

    2017-04-01

    The impact of irrigated agriculture on clouds and rainfall remains uncertain, particularly in less studied arid regions. Irrigated crops account for 20% of global cropland area, and non-renewable groundwater accounts for 20% of global irrigation water demand. Quantifying the feedbacks between agriculture and the atmosphere are therefore not only necessary to better understand the climate impacts of land-use change, but are also crucial for predicting long-term water use in water-scarce regions. Here we use high spatial-resolution satellite data to show the impact of irrigated crops in the arid environment of northern Saudi Arabia on cloud cover and rainfall patterns. Land surface temperatures over the crops are 5-10 K lower than their surroundings, linked to evapotranspiration rates of up to 20 mm/ month. Daytime cloud cover is up to 30% higher over the cropland compared to its immediate surroundings, and this enhancement is highly correlated with the seasonal variability in leaf area index. The cloud enhancement is associated with a much more rapid cloud cloud development during the morning. Afternoon rainfall is 85% higher over, and just downwind, of the cropland during the growing season, although rainfall remains very low in absolute terms. The feedback sign we find is the opposite to what has been observed in tropical and semiarid regions, where temperature gradients promote convergence and clouds on the warmer side of land-surface type discontinuities. This suggests that different processes are responsible for the land-atmosphere feedback in very dry environments, where lack of moisture may be a stronger constraint. Increased cloud and rainfall, and associated increases in diffuse radiation and reductions in temperature, can affect vegetation growth thus producing an internal feedback. These effects will therefore need to be taken into account to properly assess the impact of climate change on crop productivity and water use, as well as how global land

  3. Succession of carrion fauna in the arid region of San Juan Province, Argentina and its forensic relevance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aballay, F H; Murua, A F; Acosta, J C; Centeno, N D

    2012-02-01

    The succession of carrion fauna and the decomposition stages were studied in the arid environment of San Juan Province, Argentina (31°32'34.7″ S; 68°34'39.4″ W). Two pig carcasses (Sus scrofa) were placed in wire mesh cages, 100 m apart from each other. Each carcass was surrounded by pitfall traps, and a modified Malaise trap was placed above. Daily samplings were carried out to collect the insects present in the carcasses and the traps, and body and environmental temperature were measured. The main colonizer species was Chrysomya albiceps (Wiedemann) and its larvae were dominant over other Diptera. The first adult blowflies emerged at 8.9 days. The time to reach the remains stage was 8 days shorter than for other South American sites. We recorded the early arrival of adult Dermestes maculates De Geer and Dermestes ater De Geer 2 days after the beginning of the assay, and larvae of these species were recorded 4 days after. We determined a 1.5-day error in the postmortem interval estimation using the temperatures measured in the assay and those recorded by the nearest meteorological station.

  4. Modeling Linkages Between Effective Impervious Surface and Urban Vegetation Productivity in Semi-arid Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shields, C. A.; Tague, C.

    2010-12-01

    and degraded downstream water quality). We explore the relative roles of TIA and EIA on water availability and plant productivity in a semi-arid urban environment through a series of modeling exercises. The Regional HydroEcological Simulation System (RHESSys) is used to model a range of impervious surface and vegetation scenarios on a test hillslope in the Mission Creek catchment in Santa Barbara CA. Results indicate that reduced EIA can indeed act to mitigate the impact of TIA on water available to plants. We then implement a modification to the RHESSys model that incorporates patch scale estimates of EIA into simulations of the entire Mission Creek catchment, allowing us to quantify likely catchment-scale impacts of altering EIA.

  5. Environment, safety, health, and quality plan for the TRU- Contaminated Arid Soils Project of the Landfill Stabilization Focus Area Program

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Watson, L.R.

    1995-06-01

    The Landfill Stabilization Focus Area (LSFA) is a program funded by the US Department of Energy Office of Technology Development. LSFA supports the applied research, development, demonstration, testing, and evaluation of a suite of advanced technologies that together form a comprehensive remediation system for the effective and efficient remediation of buried waste. The TRU-Contaminated Arid Soils project is being conducted under the auspices of the LSFA Program. This document describes the Environment, Safety, Health, and Quality requirements for conducting LSFA/Arid Soils activities at the Idaho National Engineering Laboratory. Topics discussed in this report, as they apply to LSFA/Arid Soils operations, include Federal, State of Idaho, and Environmental Protection Agency regulations, Health and Safety Plans, Quality Program, Data Quality Objectives, and training and job hazard analysis. Finally, a discussion is given on CERCLA criteria and system and performance audits as they apply to the LSFA Program

  6. Rocks, climate and the survival of human societies in hyper-arid and arid environments - Are the human civilization in deserts at a permanent risk of collapse?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yoav, Avni; Noa, Avriel-Avni

    2017-04-01

    The great challenges of living in the arid and hyper arid regions worldwide are the shortage of water, limited resources and the permanent uncertainty of the desert climate. These challenges are known as the main weaknesses of desert societies that are prone, according to the existing paradigm, to a permanent risk of collapse. However, in the Middle East deserts, human societies are known since prehistoric times and during the entire hyper-dry Holocene. This hints that the simple paradigm of desert societies' high vulnerability to harsh desert environments needs to be better examined. In this context we examine three case studies: 1. The Southern Sinai region in Egypt: In this region, the annual precipitation fluctuates between 20-50 mm/y. However, in this highly mountainous area, desert agriculture plots including orchards were constructed, located mainly around the byzantine monastery of Santa Katerina. During the last 1500 years, much of the water supply needed for humans and agriculture was generated from runoff developed on exposed granite rocks. 2. The southern Jordan region south of Petra: Much of this wide area connecting the deserts of the Arabian Peninsula and southern Jordan receive only 20-30 mm/y. However, the main caravan route established by the Arabian tribes during the first millennia BC managed to cross this land, supplying the water needs of many camels. Most of this water was stored in large cisterns dug into the sandstone rock formations exposed along the route, especially within the Disi Formation. 3. The Negev Highlands of southern Israel: This region is divided between the hyper arid region to the south, receiving 70-80 mm/y, and the arid region to the north receiving 90-130 mm/y. During the last two millennia, the hyper arid area was used for camel grazing and goats herds, while the northern sector was used for the construction of agriculture plots, agriculture farms and even desert towns. All these activities were sustained by runoff

  7. Coupled flow and salinity transport modelling in semi-arid environments

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bauer-Gottwein, Peter; Held, R.J.; Zimmermann, S.

    2006-01-01

    Numerical groundwater modelling is used as the base for sound aquifer system analysis and water resources assessment. In many cases, particularly in semi-arid and arid regions, groundwater flow is intricately linked to salinity transport. A case in point is the Shashe River Valley in Botswana. A ...

  8. Arid Zone Hydrology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arid zone hydrology encompasses a wide range of topics and hydro-meteorological and ecological characteristics. Although arid and semi-arid watersheds perform the same functions as those in humid environments, their hydrology and sediment transport characteristics cannot be readily predicted by inf...

  9. Underground Corrosion of Activated Metals in an Arid Vadose Zone Environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Adler Flitton, M.K; Mizia, R.E.; Bishop, C.W.

    2001-01-01

    The subsurface radioactive disposal site located at the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory contains neutron-activated metals from nonfuel nuclear-reactor- core components. A long-term corrosion test is being conducted to obtain site-specific corrosion rates to support efforts to more accurately estimate the transfer of activated elements in an arid vadose zone environment. The tests use nonradioactive metal coupons representing the prominent neutron-activated material buried at the disposal location, namely, Type 304L stainless steel, Type 315L stainless steel, nickel-chromium alloy (UNS NO7718), beryllium, aluminum 6061-T6, and a zirconium alloy, (UNS R60804). In addition, carbon steel (the material presently used in the cask disposal liners and other disposal containers) and a duplex stainless steel (UNS S32550) (the proposed material for the high- integrity disposal containers) are also included in the test program. This paper briefly describes the test program and presents the early corrosion rate results after 1 year and 3 years of underground exposure

  10. Voluntary dehydration among elementary school children residing in a hot arid environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bar-David, Y; Urkin, J; Landau, D; Bar-David, Z; Pilpel, D

    2009-10-01

    Voluntary dehydration is a condition where humans do not drink appropriately in the presence of an adequate fluid supply. This may adversely affect their physical and intellectual performance. The present study aimed to describe the prevalence of voluntary dehydration among elementary school children of different ethnicities and countries of birth. Four hundred and twenty-nine elementary school children, aged 8-10 years, from four subpopulations (Israeli-born Jewish and Bedouin-Arab children, and immigrant children who recently arrived to Israel from Eastern Europe and from Ethiopia) were studied. The level of dehydration was determined by noontime urine osmolality, from samples taken over 1 week in mid-summer. Urine osmolality dehydrated group was that of Israeli-born Jewish children, whereas the Bedouin-Arab children were the least dehydrated. A high proportion of children who reside in a hot and arid environment were found to be in a state of moderate to severe dehydration. Bedouin ethnicity was associated with better hydration, whereas Israeli-born Jews were most severely dehydrated. Educational intervention programmes promoting water intake should start in early childhood and continue throughout life.

  11. Pattern solutions of the Klausmeier Model for banded vegetation in semi-arid environments I

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sherratt, Jonathan A

    2010-01-01

    In many semi-arid environments, vegetation cover is sparse, and is self-organized into large-scale spatial patterns. In particular, banded vegetation is typical on hillsides. Mathematical modelling is widely used to study these banded patterns, and many models are effectively extensions of a coupled reaction–diffusion–advection system proposed by Klausmeier (1999 Science 284 1826–8). However, there is currently very little mathematical theory on pattern solutions of these equations. This paper is the first in a series whose aim is a comprehensive understanding of these solutions, which can act as a springboard both for future simulation-based studies of the Klausmeier model, and for analysis of model extensions. The author focusses on a particular part of parameter space, and derives expressions for the boundaries of the parameter region in which patterns occur. The calculations are valid to leading order at large values of the 'slope parameter', which reflects a comparison of the rate of water flow downhill with the rate of vegetation dispersal. The form of the corresponding patterns is also studied, and the author shows that the leading order equations change close to one boundary of the parameter region in which there are patterns, leading to a homoclinic solution. Conclusions are drawn on the way in which changes in mean annual rainfall affect pattern properties, including overall biomass productivity

  12. Should we plant trees to offset greenhouse gas emissions in semi-arid environments?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pataki, D. E.; Pincetl, S.; Gillespie, T. W.; Li, W.; McCarthy, H. R.; Saatchi, S.; Saphores, J.

    2008-12-01

    Urban tree planting programs have been gaining popularity in the United States. Urban trees have been associated with a variety of environmental benefits, including improvements in air quality, mitigation of urban heat island effects, reductions in stormwater runoff, and more recently, carbon sequestration. There are also other potential aesthetic and economic benefits of urban forests, which have been shown to affect real estate values. However, there may also be significant economic and environmental costs of planting and maintaining trees in urban areas, particularly in semi-arid environments where trees are not native and require irrigation and fertilization. We are conducting an analysis of the Million Tree Initiative in the city of Los Angeles, which has committed to a major tree planting program. Los Angeles currently has a low tree canopy cover relative to other cities, particularly in its low income neighborhoods. We are evaluating the decision-making processes associated with the new tree planting program, its perceived benefits, and its actual benefits based on measurements of plant and ecosystem processes such as transpiration, photosynthesis, and water use efficiency; remote sensing analyses of tree cover and surface temperature; and economic analyses. We have found great variability in the interpretation of the program by its various participants, but also significant institutional learning as the program has evolved. Our datasets have challenged some of the common assumptions of the program, for example, the assumption that native species use less water than imported species and are therefore more environmentally beneficial in terms of water resources. We have also found significant impacts of the urban forest on air temperature, which may reduce energy use during the summer due to reductions in air conditioning. This is likely to be a larger effect of urban trees on greenhouse gas emissions than direct carbon sequestration alone, which is a very

  13. Lake Evaporation in a Hyper-Arid Environment, Northwest of China—Measurement and Estimation

    OpenAIRE

    Xiao Liu; Jingjie Yu; Ping Wang; Yichi Zhang; Chaoyang Du

    2016-01-01

    Lake evaporation is a critical component of the hydrological cycle. Quantifying lake evaporation in hyper-arid regions by measurement and estimation can both provide reliable potential evaporation (ET0) reference and promote a deeper understanding of the regional hydrological process and its response towards changing climate. We placed a floating E601 evaporation pan on East Juyan Lake, which is representative of arid regions’ terminal lakes, to measure daily evaporation and conducted simulta...

  14. Response of cotton, alfalfa, and cantaloupe to foliar-deposited salt in an arid environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hofmann, W.C.; Karpiscak, M.M.; Bartels, P.G.

    1987-01-01

    The cooling towers at the Palo Verde Nuclear Generating Station (PVNGS), located 80 km west of Phoenix, AZ, will release as estimated 2.1 Mg/d of particulates (primarily salts) into the atmosphere when the station is in full operation. The saline drift will disperse and settle onto agricultural fields surrounding the station. Field studies were conducted in 1983 to investigate the influence of foliar-applied saline aerosol on crop growth, foliar injury, and tissue elemental concentration on cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L.), alfalfa (medicago sativa L.), and cantaloupe (Cucumis melo L.) in an arid environment. The treatment aerosol solutions simulated treated wastewater effluent and included all essential plant nutrients and other elements, including trace concentrations of heavy metals. The treatments included unsprayed plots, and plots sprayed with salt solutions at 0 (distilled water), 8, 83, and 415 kg/(ha yr). The alfalfa received an additional 829 kg/(ha yr) treatment. The species were evaluated in separate experiments on Mohave clay loam and Sonoita sandy loam soils (Typic Haplargid) near Marana, AZ. Cotton treated with 415 kg/(ha yr) had significantly less chlorosis and tended to be slightly taller than the cotton in the unsprayed plots. The alfalfa treated at a rate of 829 kg/(ha yr) showed significantly more leaf margin necrosis than did the unsprayed alfalfa. In the cantaloupe, there were no visually apparent differences among salt treatments. Hand-harvested cotton plots had a significant reduction is seed cotton yield at the 415 kg/(ha yr) treatment. A similar though nonsignificant, trend towards reduced yield with increased salt treatment was observed in machine-harvested cotton plots

  15. Water sources accessed by arid zone riparian trees in highly saline environments, Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costelloe, Justin F; Payne, Emily; Woodrow, Ian E; Irvine, Elizabeth C; Western, Andrew W; Leaney, Fred W

    2008-05-01

    The flow regimes of arid zone rivers are often highly variable, and shallow groundwater in the alluvial aquifers can be very saline, thus constraining the availability and quality of the major water sources available to riparian trees-soil water, shallow groundwater and stream water. We have identified water sources and strategies used by riparian trees in more highly saline and arid conditions than previously studied for riparian trees of arid zone rivers. Our research focused on the riparian species Eucalyptus coolabah, one of the major riparian trees of ephemeral arid zone rivers in Australia. The water sources available to this riparian tree were examined using delta(18)O isotope data from xylem, soil water, groundwater and surface water. Additionally, soil chloride and matric potential data were used to infer zones of water availability for root uptake. Despite the saline conditions, the trees used a mixture of soil water and groundwater sources, but they did not use surface water directly. The study identified three strategies used to cope with typically high groundwater and soil water salinities. Firstly, the trees preferentially grow in zones of most frequent flushing by infiltrating streamflow, such as the bank-tops of channels. Secondly, the trees limit water use by having low transpiration rates. Thirdly, the trees are able to extract water at very low osmotic potentials, with water uptake continuing at chloride concentrations of at least 20,000-30,000 mg L(-1).

  16. Spatial patterns of grasses and shrubs in an arid grassland environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    In the Chihuahuan Desert of Mexico and New Mexico, shrub invasion is a common problem, and once-abundant grassland ecosystems are being replaced by shrub-dominated habitat. The spatial arrangement of grasses and shrubs in these arid grasslands can provide better insight into community dynamics and c...

  17. Atmospheric Nitrogen Deposition at Two Sites in an Arid Environment of Central Asia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Kaihui; Liu, Xuejun; Song, Wei; Chang, Yunhua; Hu, Yukun; Tian, Changyan

    2013-01-01

    Arid areas play a significant role in the global nitrogen cycle. Dry and wet deposition of inorganic nitrogen (N) species were monitored at one urban (SDS) and one suburban (TFS) site at Urumqi in a semi-arid region of central Asia. Atmospheric concentrations of NH3, NO2, HNO3, particulate ammonium and nitrate (pNH4 (+) and pNO3 (-)) concentrations and NH4-N and NO3-N concentrations in precipitation showed large monthly variations and averaged 7.1, 26.6, 2.4, 6.6, 2.7 µg N m(-3) and 1.3, 1.0 mg N L(-1) at both SDS and TFS. Nitrogen dry deposition fluxes were 40.7 and 36.0 kg N ha(-1) yr(-1) while wet deposition of N fluxes were 6.0 and 8.8 kg N ha(-1) yr(-1) at SDS and TFS, respectively. Total N deposition averaged 45.8 kg N ha(-1) yr(-1)at both sites. Our results indicate that N dry deposition has been a major part of total N deposition (83.8% on average) in an arid region of central Asia. Such high N deposition implies heavy environmental pollution and an important nutrient resource in arid regions.

  18. Farming system context drives the value of deep wheat roots in semi-arid environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lilley, Julianne M; Kirkegaard, John A

    2016-06-01

    The capture of subsoil water by wheat roots can make a valuable contribution to grain yield on deep soils. More extensive root systems can capture more water, but leave the soil in a drier state, potentially limiting water availability to subsequent crops. To evaluate the importance of these legacy effects, a long-term simulation analysis at eight sites in the semi-arid environment of Australia compared the yield of standard wheat cultivars with cultivars that were (i) modified to have root systems which extract more water at depth and/or (ii) sown earlier to increase the duration of the vegetative period and hence rooting depth. We compared simulations with and without annual resetting of soil water to investigate the legacy effects of drier subsoils related to modified root systems. Simulated mean yield benefits from modified root systems declined from 0.1-0.6 t ha(-1) when annually reset, to 0-0.2 t ha(-1) in the continuous simulation due to a legacy of drier soils (mean 0-32mm) at subsequent crop sowing. For continuous simulations, predicted yield benefits of >0.2 t ha(-1) from more extensive root systems were rare (3-10% of years) at sites with shallow soils (<1.0 m), but occurred in 14-44% of years at sites with deeper soils (1.6-2.5 m). Earlier sowing had a larger impact than modified root systems on water uptake (14-31 vs 2-17mm) and mean yield increase (up to 0.7 vs 0-0.2 t ha(-1)) and the benefits occurred on deep and shallow soils and in more years (9-79 vs 3-44%). Increasing the proportion of crops in the sequence which dry the subsoil extensively has implications for the farming system productivity, and the crop sequence must be managed tactically to optimize overall system benefits. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Society for Experimental Biology.

  19. Preliminary criteria for shallow-land storage/disposal of low-level radioactive solid waste in an arid environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shord, A.L.

    1979-09-01

    Preliminary criteria for shallow land storage/disposal of low level radioactive solid waste in an arid environment were developed. Criteria which address the establishment and operation of a storage/disposal facility for low-level radioactive solid wastes are discussed. These were developed from the following sources: (1) a literature review of solid waste burial; (2) a review of the regulations, standards, and codes pertinent to the burial of radioactive wastes; (3) on site experience; and (4) evaluation of existing burial grounds and practices

  20. Changes in zinc speciation with mine tailings acidification in a semi-arid weathering environment

    OpenAIRE

    Hayes, Sarah M.; O’Day, Peggy A.; Webb, Sam M.; Maier, Raina M.; Chorover, Jon

    2011-01-01

    High concentrations of residual metal contaminants in mine tailings can be transported easily by wind and water, particularly when tailings remain unvegetated for decades following mining cessation, as is the case in semi-arid landscapes. Understanding the speciation and mobility of contaminant metal(loid)s, particularly in surficial tailings, is essential to controlling their phytotoxicities and to revegetating impacted sites. In prior work, we showed that surficial tailings samples from the...

  1. Optimizing irrigation and nitrogen for wheat through empirical modeling under semi-arid environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saeed, Umer; Wajid, Syed Aftab; Khaliq, Tasneem; Zahir, Zahir Ahmad

    2017-04-01

    reducing irrigation from I 300 to I 240 mm during 2012-2013 and 2013-2014 did not reduce crop yield significantly (P nitrogen application ranged from 31.2 to 55.4% at N 180 and N 240 kg ha -1 for different levels of irrigation. It is concluded from study that irrigation and nitrogen relationship can be used for efficient management of irrigation and nitrogen and to reduce nitrogen losses. The empirical equations developed in this study can help farmers of semi-arid environment to calculate optimum level of irrigation and nitrogen for maximum economic return from wheat.

  2. Ideal proportion of roughage and concentrate for Malpura ewes to adapt and reproduce in a semi-arid tropical environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Indu, Shekhawat; Sejian, Veerasamy; Kumar, Davendra; Pareek, Arvind; Naqvi, Syed Mohammad Krusheed

    2015-12-01

    The study was designed to identify the most appropriate roughage to concentrate ratio for Malpura ewes under semi-arid tropical environments. The study was conducted for a period of 35 days and included 30 (2 years old) non-pregnant Malpura ewes weighing between 30 and 35 kg. Estrus synchronization was carried out in all the animals using indigenously developed intravaginal sponges impregnated with progesterone. The ewes were randomly divided into three groups (n = 10/group) namely R50 (n = 10; roughage to concentrate, 50:50), R60 (n = 10; roughage to concentrate, 60:40), and R70 (n = 10; roughage to concentrate, 70:30). Individual feed and water intake was recorded on a daily basis throughout the course of the study. Growth variables, physiological responses, blood metabolites, and endocrine responses were estimated at weekly intervals. Results of the study indicated that nutritional treatment significantly influenced growth variables including body weight (p progesterone, PCV, total cholesterol, total protein, albumin, estrus%, and estrus cycle length. Since the additional concentrate supplementation in R50 and R60 did not improve the production variables, it can be concluded that providing 70 % roughage and 30 % concentrate could be a more appropriate and economically feasible ration composition for Malpura ewes reared in semi-arid tropical environments.

  3. Influence of season and sex on hemato-biochemical traits in adult turkeys under arid tropical environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anil Gattani

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Aim: The objective of this study was to evaluate the effect of season and sex on hemato-biochemical parameters of turkey (Meleagris gallopavo in the arid tropical environment. Materials and Methods: The experiment was conducted on 20-week old turkeys consisting of 20 males and 20 females. Blood was collected from all turkeys during January and May. Hemoglobin (Hb, red blood cell (RBC, packed cell volume (PCV, mean corpuscular volume (MCV, mean corpuscular hemoglobin (MCH, and mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration (MCHC were estimated in whole blood and glucose, protein, albumin, globulin, A/G ratio, calcium, phosphorus, alanine aminotransferase (ALT, and aspartate aminotransferase (AST in serum. Result: Season has significant (p<0.05 effect on Hb concentration, RBC, and PCV in both male and female. Male has significantly higher (p<0.05 Hb concentration, RBC, and PCV. There is no significant effect of sex, and season was observed on MCV, MCH, and MCHC. Glucose, protein, albumin, globulin, and A/G ratio were significantly (p<0.05 affected by season and sex. AST and ALT were significantly (p<0.05 affected by season in both sexes. There is no significant difference was recorded on calcium, phosphorus due to season and sex. Conclusion: Under arid tropical environment, turkey hemato-biochemical parameters are influenced by both sex and season.

  4. Hydric soils and the relationship to plant diversity within reclaimed stream channels in semi-arid environments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schladweiler, B.K.; Rexroat, S.; Benson, S.

    1999-01-01

    Wetlands are especially important in semi-arid environments, such as the Powder River Basin of northeastern Wyoming, where water is a limiting factor for living organisms. Within this coal mining region of northeastern Wyoming, jurisdictional wetlands are mapped according to the US Army Corps of Engineers 1987 delineation procedure. Within the coal mining region of northeastern Wyoming, little or no full-scale mitigation or reconstruction attempts of jurisdictional wetland areas have been made until recently. Based on the importance of wetlands in a semi-arid environment and lack of information on existing or reconstructed areas, the specific objectives of the 1998 fieldwork were: (1) To define the pre-disturbance ecological state of hydric soils within jurisdictional sections of stream channels on two coal permit areas in northeastern Wyoming, and (2) To determine the effect that hydric soil parameters have on plant community distribution and composition within the two coal permit areas. Undisturbed sections of stream channels and disturbed sections of reconstructed or modified stream channels at the Rawhide Mine and Buckskin Mine, located north of Gillette, Wyoming, were selected for the study. Soils field and laboratory information and field vegetation cover were collected during 1998 within native stream channels and disturbed stream channels that had been reclaimed at each mine. Soils laboratory information is currently preliminary and included pH, electrical conductivity and sodium adsorption ratio. Results and statistical comparisons between soils and vegetation data will be presented

  5. When good practices by water committees are not relevant: Sustainability of small water infrastructures in semi-arid mozambique

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ducrot, Raphaëlle

    2017-12-01

    This paper explores the contradiction between the need for large scale interventions in rural water supplies and the need for flexibility when providing support for community institutions, by investigating the implementation of the Mozambique - National Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Program in a semi-arid district of the Limpopo Basin. Our results showed that coordinated leadership by key committee members, and the level of village governance was more important for borehole sustainability than the normative functioning of the committee. In a context in which the centrality of leadership prevails over collective action the sustainability of rural water infrastructure derives from the ability of leaders to motivate the community to provide supplementary funding. This, in turn, depends on the added value to the community of the water points and on village politics. Any interventions that increased community conflicts, for example because of lack of transparency or unequitable access to the benefit of the intervention, weakened the coordination and the collective action capacity of the community and hence the sustainability of the infrastructures even if the intervention was not directly related to water access. These results stress the importance of the project/program implementation pathway.

  6. Necrophagous beetles associated with carcasses in a semi-arid environment in northeastern Brazil: implications for forensic entomology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayer, Ana C G; Vasconcelos, Simão D

    2013-03-10

    Data on the ecology and bionomics of necrophagous beetles are scarce in tropical countries despite their relevance in forensic investigations. We performed a survey on the diversity and temporal pattern of colonization of beetles on pig carcasses in a fragment of dry forest in northeastern Brazil. We collected 1550 adults of diverse feeding habits from 12 families, of which 96% had necrophagous and/or copro-necrophagous habits and belonged to four families: Dermestidae, Scarabaeidae, Cleridae and Trogidae. Three species, Dermestes maculatus, Necrobia rufipes and Omorgus suberosus are reported for the first time with an expanded geographical distribution that includes the semi-arid region in Brazil. Adult beetles were collected as early as 24h after death. One endemic species, Deltochilum verruciferum, stood out in terms of numerical dominance and temporal occurrence during different stages of decomposition. Its intimate association with carrion emphasizes their potential role in forensic entomology in the region. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Food source quality and ant dominance hierarchy influence the outcomes of ant-plant interactions in an arid environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flores-Flores, Rocío Vianey; Aguirre, Armando; Anjos, Diego V.; Neves, Frederico S.; Campos, Ricardo I.; Dáttilo, Wesley

    2018-02-01

    In this study, we conducted a series of experiments in a population of Vachellia constricta (Fabaceae) in the arid Tehuacan-Cuicatláan valley, Mexico, in order to evaluate if the food source quality and ant dominance hierarchy influence the outcomes of ant-plant interactions. Using an experiment with artificial nectaries, we observed that ants foraging on food sources with higher concentration of sugar are quicker in finding and attacking potential herbivorous insects. More specifically, we found that the same ant species may increase their defence effectiveness according to the quality of food available. These findings indicate that ant effectiveness in plant protection is context-dependent and may vary according to specific individual characteristics of plants. In addition, we showed that competitively superior ant species tend to dominate plants in periods with high nectar activity, emphasizing the role of the dominance hierarchy structuring ant-plant interactions. However, when high sugar food sources were experimentally available ad libitum, the nocturnal and competitively superior ant species, Camponotus atriceps, did not dominate the artificial nectaries during the day possibly due to limitation of its thermal tolerance. Therefore, temporal niche partitioning may be allowing the coexistence of two dominant ant species (Camponotus rubritorax during the day and C. atriceps at night) on V. constricta. Our findings indicate that the quality of the food source, and temporal shifts in ant dominance are key factors which structure the biotic plant defences in an arid environment.

  8. Potential of Space-Borne Hyperspectral Data for Biomass Quantification in an Arid Environment: Advantages and Limitations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Harald Zandler

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available In spite of considerable efforts to monitor global vegetation, biomass quantification in drylands is still a major challenge due to low spectral resolution and considerable background effects. Hence, this study examines the potential of the space-borne hyperspectral Hyperion sensor compared to the multispectral Landsat OLI sensor in predicting dwarf shrub biomass in an arid region characterized by challenging conditions for satellite-based analysis: The Eastern Pamirs of Tajikistan. We calculated vegetation indices for all available wavelengths of both sensors, correlated these indices with field-mapped biomass while considering the multiple comparison problem, and assessed the predictive performance of single-variable linear models constructed with data from each of the sensors. Results showed an increased performance of the hyperspectral sensor and the particular suitability of indices capturing the short-wave infrared spectral region in dwarf shrub biomass prediction. Performance was considerably poorer in the area with less vegetation cover. Furthermore, spatial transferability of vegetation indices was not feasible in this region, underlining the importance of repeated model building. This study indicates that upcoming space-borne hyperspectral sensors increase the performance of biomass prediction in the world’s arid environments.

  9. Baccharis Salicifolia development in the presence of high concentrations of uranium in the arid environment of San Marcos, Chihuahua

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Luna P, M. Y.; Alarcon H, M. T.; Silva S, M.; Renteria V, M; Rodriguez V, M. A.; Herrera P, E.; Reyes C, M.; Montero C, M. E., E-mail: elena.montero@cimav.edu.m [Centro de Investigacion en Materiales Avanzados, S. C., Miguel de Cervantes 120, Complejo Industrial Chihuahua, 31109 Chihuahua (Mexico)

    2011-02-15

    In humid zones and marine environments the bio indicator contaminants by trace elements are well established. However, in arid zones it is more difficult to find these tools because there is less biodiversity. The objective of this paper was to analyze the behavior of the Baccharis salicifolia plant in areas with high uranium concentration in arid zones, to determine the characteristics of tolerance and possible use as a bio monitor for the presence of such contaminants. For this project a uraniferous zone was selected in San Marcos, located northwest of the City of Chihuahua. A total of 8 sampling points of the plant and soil were located here. Each sample was divided into the root and the stem and leaves to determine the specific activity of the uranium in both parts of the plant and its sediments. The determination of the specific activities of the total uranium in the samples was obtained by liquid scintillation with alpha-beta separation. The results indicate a tendency for the plant to accumulate the uranium in its different parts, and to trans locate it to its stem and leaves. The plant is resistant to high concentrations of uranium, not showing any specific changes in relation to non contaminated areas that might indicate the presence of the contaminant. Therefore, its use as a bio monitor species is limited. (Author)

  10. Baccharis Salicifolia development in the presence of high concentrations of uranium in the arid environment of San Marcos, Chihuahua

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Luna P, M. Y.; Alarcon H, M. T.; Silva S, M.; Renteria V, M; Rodriguez V, M. A.; Herrera P, E.; Reyes C, M.; Montero C, M. E.

    2011-01-01

    In humid zones and marine environments the bio indicator contaminants by trace elements are well established. However, in arid zones it is more difficult to find these tools because there is less biodiversity. The objective of this paper was to analyze the behavior of the Baccharis salicifolia plant in areas with high uranium concentration in arid zones, to determine the characteristics of tolerance and possible use as a bio monitor for the presence of such contaminants. For this project a uraniferous zone was selected in San Marcos, located northwest of the City of Chihuahua. A total of 8 sampling points of the plant and soil were located here. Each sample was divided into the root and the stem and leaves to determine the specific activity of the uranium in both parts of the plant and its sediments. The determination of the specific activities of the total uranium in the samples was obtained by liquid scintillation with alpha-beta separation. The results indicate a tendency for the plant to accumulate the uranium in its different parts, and to trans locate it to its stem and leaves. The plant is resistant to high concentrations of uranium, not showing any specific changes in relation to non contaminated areas that might indicate the presence of the contaminant. Therefore, its use as a bio monitor species is limited. (Author)

  11. Modeled Impacts of Chronic Wasting Disease on White-Tailed Deer in a Semi-Arid Environment.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Aaron M Foley

    Full Text Available White-tailed deer are a culturally and economically important game species in North America, especially in South Texas. The recent discovery of chronic wasting disease (CWD in captive deer facilities in Texas has increased concern about the potential emergence of CWD in free-ranging deer. The concern is exacerbated because much of the South Texas region is a semi-arid environment with variable rainfall, where precipitation is strongly correlated with fawn recruitment. Further, the marginally productive rangelands, in combination with erratic fawn recruitment, results in populations that are frequently density-independent, and thus sensitive to additive mortality. It is unknown how a deer population in semi-arid regions would respond to the presence of CWD. We used long-term empirical datasets from a lightly harvested (2% annual harvest population in conjunction with 3 prevalence growth rates from CWD afflicted areas (0.26%, 0.83%, and 2.3% increases per year via a multi-stage partially deterministic model to simulate a deer population for 25 years under four scenarios: 1 without CWD and without harvest, 2 with CWD and without harvest, 3 with CWD and male harvest only, and 4 with CWD and harvest of both sexes. The modeled populations without CWD and without harvest averaged a 1.43% annual increase over 25 years; incorporation of 2% annual harvest of both sexes resulted in a stable population. The model with slowest CWD prevalence rate growth (0.26% annually without harvest resulted in stable populations but the addition of 1% harvest resulted in population declines. Further, the male age structure in CWD models became skewed to younger age classes. We incorporated fawn:doe ratios from three CWD afflicted areas in Wisconsin and Wyoming into the model with 0.26% annual increase in prevalence and populations did not begin to decline until ~10%, ~16%, and ~26% of deer were harvested annually. Deer populations in variable environments rely on high

  12. Multifrequency passive microwave observations of soil moisture in an arid rangeland environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, T. J.; Schmugge, T. J.; Parry, R.; Kustas, W. P.; Ritchie, J. C.; Shutko, A. M.; Khaldin, A.; Reutov, E.; Novichikhin, E.; Liberman, B.

    1992-01-01

    A cooperative experiment was conducted by teams from the U.S. and U.S.S.R. to evaluate passive microwave instruments and algorithms used to estimate surface soil moisture. Experiments were conducted as part of an interdisciplinary experiment in an arid rangeland watershed located in the southwest United States. Soviet microwave radiometers operating at wavelengths of 2.25, 21 and 27 cm were flown on a U.S. aircraft. Radio frequency interference limited usable data to the 2.25 and 21 cm systems. Data have been calibrated and compared to ground observations of soil moisture. These analyses showed that the 21 cm system could produce reliable and useful soil moisture information and that the 2.25 cm system was of no value for soil moisture estimation in this experiment.

  13. Geochemical processes controlling groundwater quality under semi arid environment: A case study in central Morocco.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karroum, Morad; Elgettafi, Mohammed; Elmandour, Abdenabi; Wilske, Cornelia; Himi, Mahjoub; Casas, Albert

    2017-12-31

    Bahira plain is an important area for Morocco due to its agriculture and mining activities. Situated in a sub-arid to arid climate, this plain hosts an aquifer system that represents sequences of carbonates, phosphates, evaporates and alluvial deposits. Groundwater flows from Ganntour plateau (recharge area) to the basin-fill deposits and Zima Lake and Sed Elmejnoun where water evaporates. The objective of this study was to characterize the chemical properties of the groundwater and to assess the processes controlling the groundwater's chemistry. We can divide water samples into three hydrochemical water groups: recharge waters (Ca/Mg-HCO 3 ), transition zone waters (Ca-HCO 3 -SO 4 /Cl) and discharge waters (Na-Cl/SO 4 ). Accordingly, compositions of waters are determined by the availability of easily soluble minerals like calcite (Ca-HCO 3 dominant), halite (Na-Cl dominant) and gypsum (Ca-SO 4 dominant). Cl/Br ratios show that Cl concentration increases from dissolution of natural halite. When groundwater is affected by extreme evaporation Cl/Br ratios may increase up to 1900. High fluoride concentrations are associated with low Ca 2+ concentrations (<100mg/L). That means when recharge waters enter the aquifer, it starts dissolving fluorite since the Ca 2+ concentration is low. Once groundwater becomes saturated with Ca 2+ , the immobilization of fluoride is occurring by precipitation of fluoride-rich minerals like fluoro-apatite. According to the environmental isotope ( 18 O and 2 H) analyses, they are three potential processes affecting groundwater: 1. Evaporation as verified by low slope value, 2. Water-rock interaction, 3. admixture of waters showed different stable isotope compositions and salinities. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Assessment of Trace Metals in Soil, Vegetation and Rodents in Relation to Metal Mining Activities in an Arid Environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Méndez-Rodríguez, Lia C; Alvarez-Castañeda, Sergio Ticul

    2016-07-01

    Areas where abandoned metal-extraction mines are located contain large quantities of mineral wastes derived from environmentally unsafe mining practices. These wastes contain many pollutants, such as heavy metals, which could be released to the environment through weathering and leaching, hence becoming an important source of environmental metal pollution. This study evaluates differences in the levels of lead, iron, nickel, manganese, copper and cadmium in rodents sharing the same type of diet under different microhabitat use in arid areas with past mining activities. Samples of soil, roots, branches and seeds of Palo Adán (Fouquieria diguetii) and specimens of two rodent species (Chaetodipus arenarius and C. spinatus) were collected in areas with impact from past metal mining activities as well as from areas with no mining impact. Both rodent species mirrored nickel and iron levels in soil and seeds, as well as lead levels in soil; however, C. arenarius accumulated higher levels of manganese, copper and cadmium.

  15. Spatial and temporal distribution of free-living protozoa in aquatic environments of a Brazilian semi-arid region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Luisa Quinino de Medeiros

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available Free-living protozoa organisms are distributed in aquatic environments and vary widely in both qualitative and quantitative terms. The unique ecological functions they exhibit in their habitats help to maintain the dynamic balance of these environments. Despite their wide range and abundance, studies on geographical distribution and ecology, when compared to other groups, are still scarce. This study aimed to identify and record the occurrence of free-living protozoa at three points in Piancó-Piranhas-Açu basin, in a semi-arid area of Rio Grande do Norte (RN state, and to relate the occurrence of taxa with variations in chlorophyll a, pH and temperature in the environments. Samples were collected in the Armando Ribeiro Gonçalves Dam, from two lentic environments upstream and a lotic ecosystem downstream. Sixty-five taxa of free-living protozoa were found. The Student's t-test showed significant inter-variable differences (p <0.05. Similar protozoan species were recorded under different degrees of trophic status according to chlorophyll a concentrations, suggesting the organisms identified are not ideal for indicating trophic level. We hypothesize that food availability, the influence of lentic and lotic systems and the presence of aquatic macrophytes influenced protozoan dynamics during the study period.

  16. Estimating groundwater-ephemeral stream exchange in hyper-arid environments: Field experiments and numerical simulations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Ping; Pozdniakov, Sergey P.; Vasilevskiy, Peter Yu.

    2017-12-01

    Surface water infiltration from ephemeral dryland streams is particularly important in hyporheic exchange and biogeochemical processes in arid and semi-arid regions. However, streamflow transmission losses can vary significantly, partly due to spatiotemporal variations in streambed permeability. To extend our understanding of changes in streambed hydraulic properties, field investigations of streambed hydraulic conductivity were conducted in an ephemeral dryland stream in north-western China during high and low streamflow periods. Additionally, streamflow transmission losses were numerically estimated using combined stream and groundwater hydraulic head data and stream and streambed temperature data. An analysis of slug test data at two different river flow stages (one test was performed at a low river stage with clean water and the other at a high river stage with muddy water) suggested that sedimentation from fine-grained particles, i.e., physical clogging processes, likely led to a reduction in streambed hydraulic properties. To account for the effects of streambed clogging on changes in hydraulic properties, an iteratively increasing total hydraulic resistance during the slug test was considered to correct the estimation of streambed hydraulic conductivity. The stream and streambed temperature can also greatly influence the hydraulic properties of the streambed. One-dimensional coupled water and heat flux modelling with HYDRUS-1D was used to quantify the effects of seasonal changes in stream and streambed temperature on streamflow losses. During the period from 6 August 2014 to 4 June 2015, the total infiltration estimated using temperature-dependent hydraulic conductivity accounted for approximately 88% of that using temperature-independent hydraulic conductivity. Streambed clogging processes associated with fine particle settling/wash up cycles during flow events, and seasonal changes in streamflow temperature are two considerable factors that affect water

  17. Alternative Landfill Cover and Monitoring Systems for Landfills in Arid Environments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rawlinson, S. E.

    2002-01-01

    In December 2000, a performance monitoring facility was constructed adjacent to the mixed waste disposal unit U-3ax/bl at the Area 3 Radioactive Waste Management Site at the Nevada Test Site. This facility consists of eight drainage lysimeters measuring 10 feet in diameter, 8 feet deep, and backfilled with native soil. The lysimeters have three different surface treatments: two were left bare, two were revegetated with native species, and two were allowed to revegetate with invader species (two are reserved for future studies). The lysimeters are instrumented with an array of soil water content and soil water potential sensors and have sealed bottoms so that any drainage can be measured. All sensors are working properly and indicate that the bare lysimeters are the wettest, as expected. The vegetated lysimeters, both seeded and those allowed to revegetate with invader species, are significantly drier than the bare cover treatments. No drainage has occurred in any of the lysimeters. The Accelerated Site Technology Deployment program under the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Science and Technology provided the funding for this project with the objective of reducing the uncertainty associated with the performance of monolayer-evapotranspiration waste covers in arid regions such as the one deployed at U-3ax/bl

  18. Profiles of innovators in a semi-arid smallholder agricultural environment in south west Zimbabwe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mutsvangwa-Sammie, Eness P.; Manzungu, Emmanuel; Siziba, Shephard

    2017-08-01

    Innovations are regarded as critical to improving the efficiency, productivity and effectiveness of African agriculture. However, few efforts have been directed at understanding 'agricultural innovators', especially among smallholder farmers in sub-Saharan Africa who face low agricultural productivity and widespread food insecurity. This paper investigates the profile of innovators from a local perspective in a semi-arid smallholder farming area in south-west Zimbabwe. The paper is based on data collected from key informant interviews and a household questionnaire survey administered to 239 households from Gwanda and Insiza districts between 2013 and 2014. Qualities or attributes of an innovator (which constitute the profile of an innovator) identified by key informants included: resource endowment; social networks; education; and enthusiasm (passionate and hardworking). The attributes were used in a logit regression model to estimate the probability of the 239 households exhibiting the attributes of an innovator. Social networks and resource endowment, as depicted by amount of land cultivated, were found to significantly influence the probability of an individual being an innovator. Interestingly, the common attributes of education or belonging to an innovation platform used by extension and development agents, were found not to influence the probability of one being an innovator. The paper concludes that understanding local perceptions of innovators, which is based on appreciation of the socio-economic and biophysical circumstances, should be used to identify a 'basket' of context specific innovations that have potential to address the diverse needs of rural households farming households.

  19. Artemisia annua L.: agro-techniques for semi-arid environments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcello Scarcella

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Artemisia annua L. is an aromatic annual plant native in Asia, probably in China, and is widespread in all temperate regions. Aerial parts contain aromatic volatile oils and non-volatile sesquiterpenes used in pharmacopoeia. The most important sesquiterpene is artemisinin and its derivatives, which are used as a remedy against malaria. In the Mediterranean region, interest in cultivating Artemisia resulted in emerging industrial activities demanding local biomass with high content of artemisinin to start new production chains. The goal of this paper was to find out appropriate agro-techniques for semi-arid climate regions to be followed by local growers in order to get convenient yield in terms of biomass and artemisinin content. The specific research objectives were to test germplasm and to develop a pilot model for A. annua, including the main agro-techniques (plant density, nitrogen supply and irrigation requirements. Results were obtained after a two-year field study carried out in an area of Salento region. The effects of the season and of the tested cultivars were not significant. The highest biomass production (36 t ha-1 of dry biomass, associated with a high percentage of artemisinin (0.97 % on dry weight, was achieved by using 7.3 plant m-2, and by supplying 60 Kg N ha-1 and 150 mm of irrigation water.

  20. Multi-Criteria Evaluation of Irrigated Agriculture Suitability to Achieve Food Security in an Arid Environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amal Aldababseh

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available This research aims at assessing land suitability for large-scale agriculture using multiple spatial datasets which include climate conditions, water potential, soil capabilities, topography and land management. The study case is in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, in the UAE. The aridity of climate in the region requires accounting for non-renewable sources like desalination and treated sewage effluent (TSE for an accurate and realistic assessment of irrigated agriculture suitability. All datasets were systematically aggregated using an analytical hierarchical process (AHP in a GIS model. A hierarchal structure is built and pairwise comparisons matrices are used to calculate weights of the criteria. All spatial processes were integrated to model land suitability and different types of crops are considered in the analysis. Results show that jojoba and sorghum show the best capabilities to survive under the current conditions, followed by date palm, fruits and forage. Vegetables and cereals proved to be the least preferable options. Introducing desalinated water and TSE enhanced land suitability for irrigated agriculture. These findings have positive implications for national planning, the decision-making process of land alteration for agricultural use and addressing sustainable land management and food security issues.

  1. Aleppo pine bark as a biomonitor of atmospheric pollution in the arid environment of Jordan

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Al-Alawi, Mu' taz M.; Jiries, Anwar [Prince Faisal Center for Dead Sea, Environmental and Energy Research, Mu' tah University, Al-Karak (Jordan); Carreras, Hebe [University of Cordoba, FCEFyN, Cordoba (Argentina); Alawi, Mahmoud [Chemistry Department, University of Jordan, Amman (Jordan); Charlesworth, Susanne M. [Geography, Environment and Disaster Management, Coventry University, Coventry (United Kingdom); Batarseh, Mufeed I.

    2007-11-15

    Monitoring of atmospheric pollution using Aleppo bark as a bioindicator was carried out in the industrial area surrounding the Al-Hussein thermal power station and the oil refinery at Al-Hashimyeh town, Jordan. The concentrations of heavy metals (copper, lead, cadmium, manganese, cobalt, nickel, zinc, iron, and chromium) were analyzed in bark samples collected from the study area during July 2004. The results showed that high levels of heavy metals were found in tree bark samples retrieved from all studied sites compared with the remote reference site. This is, essentially, due to the fact that the oil refinery and the thermal power plant still use low-quality fuel oil from the by-products of oil refining. Automobile emissions are another source of pollution since the study area is located along a major heavy-traffic highway. It was found that the area around the study sites (Al-Hashimyeh town, Zarqa) is polluted with high levels of heavy metals. Pine bark was found to be a suitable bioindicator of aerial fallout of heavy metals in arid regions. (Abstract Copyright [2007], Wiley Periodicals, Inc.)

  2. Temporal variations of natural soil salinity in an arid environment using satellite images

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gutierrez, M.; Johnson, E.

    2010-11-01

    In many remote arid areas the scarce amount of conventional soil salinity data precludes detailed analyses of salinity variations for the purpose of predicting its impact on agricultural production. A tool that is an appropriate surrogate for on-ground testing in determining temporal variations of soil salinity is Landsat satellite data. In this study six Landsat scenes over El Cuervo, a closed basin adjacent to the middle Rio Conchos basin in northern Mexico, were used to show temporal variation of natural salts from 1986 to 2005. Natural salts were inferred from ground reference data and spectral responses. Transformations used were Tasseled Cap, Principal Components and several (band) ratios. Classification of each scene was performed from the development of Regions Of Interest derived from geochemical data collected by SGM, spectral responses derived from ENVI software, and a small amount of field data collected by the authors. The resultant land cover classes showed a relationship between climatic drought and areal coverage of natural salts. When little precipitation occurred three months prior to the capture of the Landsat scene, approximately 15%-20% of the area was classified as salt. This is compared to practically no classified salt in the wetter years of 1992 and 2005 Landsat scenes.

  3. Assessment of {sup 7}Be content in precipitation in a South American semi-arid environment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Juri Ayub, J., E-mail: jjuri@unsl.edu.ar [Grupo de Estudios Ambientales, Instituto de Matematica Aplicada San Luis, Universidad Nacional de San Luis/CCT-San Luis-CONICET, San Luis (Argentina); LARA, Laboratorio de Radioecologia, Instituto de Fisica, Universidade Federal Fluminense, Niteroi, RJ (Brazil); Lohaiza, F.; Velasco, H.; Rizzotto, M. [Grupo de Estudios Ambientales, Instituto de Matematica Aplicada San Luis, Universidad Nacional de San Luis/CCT-San Luis-CONICET, San Luis (Argentina); Di Gregorio, D.; Huck, H. [Departamento de Fisica, Comision Nacional de Energia Atomica, Buenos Aires (Argentina); Escuela de Ciencia y Tecnologia, Universidad Nacional de San Martin, Buenos Aires (Argentina)

    2012-12-15

    There are two naturally occurring radiogenic isotopes of beryllium, {sup 7}Be and {sup 10}Be. These are produced when cosmic radiation interacts with oxygen and nitrogen in the atmosphere. After production, these radionuclides are input to ecosystems through wet and dry deposition. In recent years {sup 7}Be and {sup 10}Be have proved to be powerful tools for studying dynamic processes that occur on the surface of the earth. We measured the {sup 7}Be content in precipitation at a semiarid location in central Argentina. From November 2006 to March 2009, 68 precipitation events were collected. Measured {sup 7}Be content ranged from 0.7 {+-} 0.4 Bq L{sup -1} to 3.2 {+-} 0.7 Bq L{sup -1}, with a mean of 1.7 Bq L{sup -1} {+-} 0.6 Bq L{sup -1}. Beryllium-7 content of rainfall did not show clear relationships with amount of rainfall (mm), mean intensity (mm h{sup -1}) or duration (h{sup -1}), or elapsed time between events (day). The general results indicate that for the typical range of precipitation there was no atmospheric washout and that the reload of the atmosphere is not a relevant factor, but when the amount of precipitation is very high washout may occur. On the other hand, when the {sup 7}Be content was measured during single rain events, a high content of this radionuclide was found to be associated with very low rainfall intensity ( Almost-Equal-To 3 mm h{sup -1}), this suggests that rain intensity could affect the {sup 7}Be content. Using all data, a good linear relationship between {sup 7}Be deposition and rain magnitude was obtained (r{sup 2} = 0.82, p < 0.0001). Because of this, the slope of this linear regression equation may be applied as a tool for tracing environmental processes that affect the surface of the earth. We can do this by directly estimating erosion/sedimentation processes using {sup 7}Be or by estimating the input of {sup 10}Be in the environment with the aim to evaluate land degradation phenomena. -- Highlights: Black

  4. Assessment of 7Be content in precipitation in a South American semi-arid environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Juri Ayub, J.; Lohaiza, F.; Velasco, H.; Rizzotto, M.; Di Gregorio, D.; Huck, H.

    2012-01-01

    There are two naturally occurring radiogenic isotopes of beryllium, 7 Be and 10 Be. These are produced when cosmic radiation interacts with oxygen and nitrogen in the atmosphere. After production, these radionuclides are input to ecosystems through wet and dry deposition. In recent years 7 Be and 10 Be have proved to be powerful tools for studying dynamic processes that occur on the surface of the earth. We measured the 7 Be content in precipitation at a semiarid location in central Argentina. From November 2006 to March 2009, 68 precipitation events were collected. Measured 7 Be content ranged from 0.7 ± 0.4 Bq L −1 to 3.2 ± 0.7 Bq L −1 , with a mean of 1.7 Bq L −1 ± 0.6 Bq L −1 . Beryllium-7 content of rainfall did not show clear relationships with amount of rainfall (mm), mean intensity (mm h −1 ) or duration (h −1 ), or elapsed time between events (day). The general results indicate that for the typical range of precipitation there was no atmospheric washout and that the reload of the atmosphere is not a relevant factor, but when the amount of precipitation is very high washout may occur. On the other hand, when the 7 Be content was measured during single rain events, a high content of this radionuclide was found to be associated with very low rainfall intensity (≈ 3 mm h −1 ), this suggests that rain intensity could affect the 7 Be content. Using all data, a good linear relationship between 7 Be deposition and rain magnitude was obtained (r 2 = 0.82, p 7 Be or by estimating the input of 10 Be in the environment with the aim to evaluate land degradation phenomena. -- Highlights: ► 7 Be in precipitation was measured at a semiarid location in central Argentina. ► No atmospheric washout was observed except for one high precipitation event. ► Wet deposition of 7 Be was linearly correlated with precipitation. ► This relationship may be applied as a tool for assessing environmental processes. ► The latter includes natural processes as

  5. Linking the spatial patterns of organisms and abiotic factors to ecosystem function and management: insights from semi-arid environments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. T. Maestre

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Numerous theoretical and modeling studies have demonstrated the ecological significance of the spatial patterning of organisms on ecosystem functioning and dynamics. However, there is a paucity of empirical evidence that quantitatively shows how changes in the spatial patterns of the organisms forming biotic communities are directly related to ecosystem structure and functioning. In this article, I review a series of experiments and observational studies conducted in semi-arid environments from Spain (degraded calcareous shrubland, steppes dominated by Stipa tenacissima, and gypsum shrublands to: 1 evaluate whether the spatial patterns of the dominant biotic elements in the community are linked to ecosystem structure and functioning, and 2 test if these patterns, and those of abiotic factors, can be used to improve ecosystem restoration. In the semiarid steppes we found a significant positive relationship between the spatial pattern of the perennial plant community and: i the water status of S. tenacissima and ii perennial species richness and diversity. Experimental plantings conducted in these steppes showed that S. tenacissima facilitated the establishment of shrub seedlings, albeit the magnitude and direction of this effect was dependent on rainfall conditions during the first yr after planting. In the gypsum shrubland, a significant, direct relationship between the spatial pattern of the biological soil crusts and surrogates of ecosystem functioning (soil bulk density and respiration was found. In a degraded shrubland with very low vegetation cover, the survival of an introduced population of the shrub Pistacia lentiscus showed marked spatial patterns, which were related to the spatial patterns of soil properties such as soil compaction and sand content. These results provide empirical evidence on the importance of spatial patterns for maintaining ecosystem structure and functioning in semi-arid ecosystems

  6. Relevance of Education & Training in a Business Environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whiteman, Jo Ann M.

    Today's workplace must employ knowledgeable, flexible, efficient, and adaptable workers who are lifelong learners. Adult learners need to be updated on the latest changes in the structure of the business environment. Business programs must respond to corporate and personal development needs by designing curriculum that embraces the management…

  7. Changes in zinc speciation with mine tailings acidification in a semi-arid weathering environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayes, Sarah M.; O’Day, Peggy A.; Webb, Sam M.; Maier, Raina M.; Chorover, Jon

    2011-01-01

    High concentrations of residual metal contaminants in mine tailings can be transported easily by wind and water, particularly when tailings remain unvegetated for decades following mining cessation, as is the case in semi-arid landscapes. Understanding the speciation and mobility of contaminant metal(loid)s, particularly in surficial tailings, is essential to controlling their phytotoxicities and to revegetating impacted sites. In prior work, we showed that surficial tailings samples from the Klondyke State Superfund Site (AZ, USA), ranging in pH from 5.4 to 2.6, represent a weathering series, with acidification resulting from sulfide mineral oxidation, long-term Fe hydrolysis, and a concurrent decrease in total (6,000 to 450 mg kg−1) and plant-available (590 to 75 mg kg−1) Zn due to leaching losses and changes in Zn speciation. Here, we used bulk and micro-focused Zn K-edge X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS) data and a six-step sequential extraction procedure to determine tailings solid phase Zn speciation. Bulk sample spectra were fit by linear combination using three references: Zn-rich phyllosilicate (Zn0.8talc), Zn sorbed to ferrihydrite (ZnadsFeOx), and zinc sulfate (ZnSO4·7H2O). Analyses indicate that Zn sorbed in tetrahedral coordination to poorly-crystalline Fe and Mn (oxyhydr)oxides decreases with acidification in the weathering sequence, whereas octahedral zinc in sulfate minerals and crystalline Fe oxides undergoes a relative accumulation. Micro-scale analyses identified hetaerolite (ZnMn2O4), hemimorphite (Zn4Si2O7(OH)2·H2O) and sphalerite (ZnS) as minor phases. Bulk and micro-focused spectroscopy complement the chemical extraction results and highlight the importance of using a multi-method approach to interrogate complex tailings systems. PMID:21761897

  8. Soil Compressibility under Irrigated Perennial and Annual Crops in a Semi-Arid Environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rafaela Watanabe

    Full Text Available ABSTRACT In irrigated soils, a continuous state of high moisture reduces resistance of the soil to applied external forces, favouring compaction. The aim of this study was to evaluate the susceptibility to compaction of developed calcareous soils in irrigated annual and perennial cropping systems of the Apodi Plateau, located in the Brazilian semi-arid region. Four areas of irrigated crops were evaluated: banana after two (B2 and 15 (B15 years cultivation, pasture (P, and a corn and beans succession (MB, as well as the reference areas for soil quality and corresponding natural vegetation (NVB2, NVB15, NVP and NVMB. Samples were collected at layers of 0.00-0.10 and 0.20-0.30 m; and for B2 and B15, samples were collected in the row and inter-row spaces. The following properties were determined: degree of compactness (DC, preconsolidation pressure (σp, compression index (Cc, maximum density (ρmax, critical water content (WCcrit, total organic carbon (TOC and carbon of light organic matter (Clom. Mean values were compared by the t-test at 5, 10, 15 and 20 % probability. An increase was seen in DC at a layer of 0.20-0.30 m in MB (p<0.15, showing the deleterious effects of preparing the soil by ploughing and chiselling, together with the cumulative traffic of heavy machinery. The TOC had a greater influence on ρmax than the stocks of Clom. Irrigation caused a reduction in Cc, and there was no effect on σp at field capacity. The planting rows showed different behaviour for Cc, ρmax, and WCcrit,, and in general the physical properties displayed better conditions than the inter-row spaces. Values for σp and Cc showed that agricultural soils display greater load-bearing capacity and are less susceptible to compaction in relation to soils under natural vegetation.

  9. Hydrologic variability governs population dynamics of a vulnerable amphibian in an arid environment.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erin R Zylstra

    Full Text Available Dynamics of many amphibian populations are governed by the distribution and availability of water. Therefore, understanding the hydrological mechanisms that explain spatial and temporal variation in occupancy and abundance will improve our ability to conserve and recover populations of vulnerable amphibians. We used 16 years of survey data from intermittent mountain streams in the Sonoran Desert to evaluate how availability of surface water affected survival and adult recruitment of a threatened amphibian, the lowland leopard frog (Lithobates yavapaiensis. Across the entire study period, monthly survival of adults ranged from 0.72 to 0.99 during summer and 0.59 to 0.94 during winter and increased with availability of surface water (Z = 7.66; P < 0.01. Recruitment of frogs into the adult age class occurred primarily during winter and ranged from 1.9 to 3.8 individuals/season/pool; like survival, recruitment increased with availability of surface water (Z = 3.67; P < 0.01. Although abundance of frogs varied across seasons and years, we found no evidence of a systematic trend during the 16-year study period. Given the strong influence of surface water on population dynamics of leopard frogs, conservation of many riparian obligates in this and similar arid regions likely depends critically on minimizing threats to structures and ecosystem processes that maintain surface waters. Understanding the influence of surface-water availability on riparian organisms is particularly important because climate change is likely to decrease precipitation and increase ambient temperatures in desert riparian systems, both of which have the potential to alter fundamentally the hydrology of these systems.

  10. Source apportionment and environmental fate of lead chromates in atmospheric dust in arid environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meza-Figueroa, Diana; González-Grijalva, Belem; Romero, Francisco; Ruiz, Joaquin; Pedroza-Montero, Martín; Rivero, Carlos Ibañez-Del; Acosta-Elías, Mónica; Ochoa-Landin, Lucas; Navarro-Espinoza, Sofía

    2018-03-07

    The environmental fate of lead derived from traffic paint has been poorly studied in developing countries, mainly in arid zones. For this purpose, a developing city located in the Sonoran desert (Hermosillo, Mexico), was chosen to conduct a study. In this paper the lead chromate (crocoite) sources in atmospheric dust were addressed using a combination of Raman microspectroscopy, X-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and Pb isotope measurements. A high concentration of Pb and Cr as micro- and nanostructured pigments of crocoite is reported in yellow traffic paint (n=80), road dust (n=146), settled dust in roofs (n=21), and atmospheric dust (n=20) from a developing city located in the Sonoran Desert. 10 samples of peri-urban soils were collected for local geochemical background. The paint photodegradation and erosion of the asphaltic cover are enhanced by the climate, and the presence of the mineral crocoite (PbCrO 4 ) in road dust with an aerodynamic diameter ranging from 100nm to 2μm suggests its integration into the atmosphere by wind resuspension processes. A positive PbCr correlation (R 2 =0.977) was found for all studied samples, suggesting a common source. The Pb-isotope data show signatures in atmospheric dust as a product of the mixing of two end members: i) local soils and ii) crocoite crystals as pigments in paint. The presence of lead chromates in atmospheric dust has not been previously documented in Latin America, and it represents an unknown health risk to the exposed population because the identified size of crystals can reach the deepest part of lungs. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Evaluating pasture and soil allowance of manganese for Kajli rams grazing in semi-arid environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khan, Zafar Iqbal; Ahmad, Kafeel; Ashraf, Muhammad; Naqvi, Syed Ali Hassan; Seidavi, Alireza; Akram, Nudrat Aisha; Laudadio, Vito; Tufarelli, Vincenzo

    2015-03-01

    The current research on the manganese (Mn) transfer from soil to plant as well as to grazing Kajli rams in the form of sampling periods was carried out under semi-arid environmental conditions. Forage, soil and blood plasma samples were collected during 4 months of the year after a 1-month interval, and Mn concentrations were assessed after wet digestion using an atomic absorption spectrophotometer. Results showed that Mn concentration in soil ranged from 48.28 to 59.44 mg/kg, with incoherent augment and decline across sampling periods, and effect of sampling period on soil Mn was also found to be significant (P soil appeared higher than the critical value and sufficient for forage crop requirement. The Mn concentration in forage ranged between 24.8 and 37.2 mg/kg, resulting deficient based on the requirement allowance of Mn for livestock grazing animals, therein with almost unchanged forage Mn concentration. The Mn values in blood plasma of rams varied from 0.066 to 0.089 mg/l, with a consistent increase based on sampling period, and the effect of sampling periods on plasma Mn was found to be highly significant (P soil and plant species amassing capability on the transport of Mn in the soil-plant-animal system. Results indicated a much higher accumulation rate at the sampling characterized by vegetation dominated by legumes in comparison to grasses, crop residues and mixed pasture and a pronounced seasonal supply of Mn at the four sampling period of grazing land of diverse botanical composition.

  12. Effects of climate change on long-term population growth of pronghorn in an arid environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gedir, Jay V.; Cain, James W.; Harris, Grant; Turnbull, Trey T.

    2015-01-01

    inhospitable to pronghorn persistence. This realization informs and steers conservation and management decisions for pronghorn in North America, while exemplifying how similar research can aid ungulates inhabiting arid regions and confronting similar circumstances elsewhere.

  13. Principal coordinate analysis of genotype × environment interaction for grain yield of bread wheat in the semi-arid regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sabaghnia Naser

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Multi-environmental trials have significant main effects and significant multiplicative genotype × environment (GE interaction effect. Principal coordinate analysis (PCOA offers a more appropriate statistical analysis to deal with such situations, compared to traditional statistical methods. Eighteen bread wheat genotypes were grown in four semi-arid regions over three year seasons to study the GE interaction and yield stability and obtained data on grain yield were analyzed using PCOA. Combined analysis of variance indicated that all of the studied effects including the main effects of genotype and environments as well as the GE interaction were highly significant. According to grand means and total mean yield, test environments were grouped to two main groups as high mean yield (H and low mean yield (L. There were five H test environments and six L test environments which analyzed in the sequential cycles. For each cycle, both scatter point diagram and minimum spanning tree plot were drawn. The identified most stable genotypes with dynamic stability concept and based on the minimum spanning tree plots and centroid distances were G1 (3310.2 kg ha-1 and G5 (3065.6 kg ha-1, and therefore could be recommended for unfavorable or poor conditions. Also, genotypes G7 (3047.2 kg ha-1 and G16 (3132.3 kg ha-1 were located several times in the vertex positions of high cycles according to the principal coordinates analysis. The principal coordinates analysis provided useful and interesting ways of investigating GE interaction of barley genotypes. Finally, the results of principal coordinates analysis in general confirmed the breeding value of the genotypes, obtained on the basis of the yield stability evaluation.

  14. Assessing the role of climate and resource management on groundwater dependent ecosystem changes in arid environments with the Landsat archive

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huntington, Justin; McGwire, Kenneth C.; Morton, Charles; Snyder, Keirith A.; Peterson, Sarah; Erickson, Tyler; Niswonger, Richard G.; Carroll, Rosemary W.H.; Smith, Guy; Allen, Richard

    2016-01-01

    Groundwater dependent ecosystems (GDEs) rely on near-surface groundwater. These systems are receiving more attention with rising air temperature, prolonged drought, and where groundwater pumping captures natural groundwater discharge for anthropogenic use. Phreatophyte shrublands, meadows, and riparian areas are GDEs that provide critical habitat for many sensitive species, especially in arid and semi-arid environments. While GDEs are vital for ecosystem services and function, their long-term (i.e. ~ 30 years) spatial and temporal variability is poorly understood with respect to local and regional scale climate, groundwater, and rangeland management. In this work, we compute time series of NDVI derived from sensors of the Landsat TM, ETM +, and OLI lineage for assessing GDEs in a variety of land and water management contexts. Changes in vegetation vigor based on climate, groundwater availability, and land management in arid landscapes are detectable with Landsat. However, the effective quantification of these ecosystem changes can be undermined if changes in spectral bandwidths between different Landsat sensors introduce biases in derived vegetation indices, and if climate, and land and water management histories are not well understood. The objective of this work is to 1) use the Landsat 8 under-fly dataset to quantify differences in spectral reflectance and NDVI between Landsat 7 ETM + and Landsat 8 OLI for a range of vegetation communities in arid and semiarid regions of the southwestern United States, and 2) demonstrate the value of 30-year historical vegetation index and climate datasets for assessing GDEs. Specific study areas were chosen to represent a range of GDEs and environmental conditions important for three scenarios: baseline monitoring of vegetation and climate, riparian restoration, and groundwater level changes. Google's Earth Engine cloud computing and environmental monitoring platform is used to rapidly access and analyze the Landsat archive

  15. WIRE project- Soil water repellence in biodiverse semi arid environments: new insights and implications for ecological restoration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muñoz-Rojas, Miriam; Jiménez-Morillo, Nicasio T.; Jordan, Antonio; Zavala, Lorena M.; Stevens, Jason; González-Pérez, Jose Antonio

    2017-04-01

    Background Soil water repellency (SWR) can have a critical effect on the restoration of disturbed ecosystems causing poor plant establishment and promoting erosion processes. Although SWR has been reported in most continents of the world for different soil types, climate conditions and land uses, there are still many research gaps in the knowledge of its causes and controlling factors (Doerr et al.,2000; Jordan et al., 2013), particularly in Mediterranean arid semi arid environments which are largely affected by this phenomenon. The WIRE project aims to investigate SWR in soils under different vegetation types of dominant biodiverse ecosystems of Western Australia (WA), e.g. hummock grasslands and Banksia woodlands, as well as characterizing organic compounds that induce hydrophobicity in these soils. Banksia woodlands (BW) are of particular interest in this project. These are iconic ecosystems of WA composed by an overstorey dominated by Proteaceae that are threatened by sand mining activities and urban expansion. Conservation and restoration of these woodlands are critical but despite considerable efforts to restore these areas, the success of current rehabilitation programs is poor due to the high sensitivity of the ecosystem to drought stress and the disruption of water dynamics in mature BW soils that result in low seedling survival rates (5-30%). The main objectives of this collaborative research are: i) to identify SWR intensity and severity under different vegetation types and evaluate controlling factors in both hummock grasslands and BW (ii) to characterize hydrophobic compounds in soils using analytical pyrolysis techniques and iii) to investigate the impact of SWR on water economy in relation with soil functioning and plant strategies for water uptake in pristine BW. Methods In a series of field trials and experimental studies, we measured SWR of soil samples under lab conditions in oven-dry samples (48 h, 105 °C) that were previously collected under

  16. Climate-smart crop production in semi-arid areas through increased knowledge of varieties, environment and management factors

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Murungweni, C.; Wijk, van M.T.; Smaling, E.M.A.; Giller, K.E.

    2016-01-01

    In large regions of sub-Saharan Africa, semi-arid conditions are likely to increase with climate change, yet these regions are becoming more important to feed production zones due to increasing population pressure. A production system in the semi-arid south eastern Zimbabwe was studied to assess

  17. Integrated double mulching practices optimizes soil temperature and improves soil water utilization in arid environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yin, Wen; Feng, Fuxue; Zhao, Cai; Yu, Aizhong; Hu, Falong; Chai, Qiang; Gan, Yantai; Guo, Yao

    2016-09-01

    Water shortage threatens agricultural sustainability in many arid and semiarid areas of the world. It is unknown whether improved water conservation practices can be developed to alleviate this issue while increasing crop productivity. In this study, we developed a "double mulching" system, i.e., plastic film coupled with straw mulch, integrated together with intensified strip intercropping. We determined (i) the responses of soil evaporation and moisture conservation to the integrated double mulching system and (ii) the change of soil temperature during key plant growth stages under the integrated systems. Experiments were carried out in northwest China in 2009 to 2011. Results show that wheat-maize strip intercropping in combination with plastic film and straw covering on the soil surface increased soil moisture (mm) by an average of 3.8 % before sowing, 5.3 % during the wheat and maize co-growth period, 4.4 % after wheat harvest, and 4.9 % after maize harvest, compared to conventional practice (control). The double mulching decreased total evapotranspiration of the two intercrops by an average of 4.6 % ( P < 0.05), compared to control. An added feature was that the double mulching system decreased soil temperature in the top 10-cm depth by 1.26 to 1.31 °C in the strips of the cool-season wheat, and by 1.31 to 1.51 °C in the strips of the warm-season maize through the 2 years. Soil temperature of maize strips higher as 1.25 to 1.94 °C than that of wheat strips in the top 10-cm soil depth under intercropping with the double mulching system; especially higher as 1.58 to 2.11 °C under intercropping with the conventional tillage; this allows the two intercrops to grow in a well "collaborative" status under the double mulching system during their co-growth period. The improvement of soil moisture and the optimization of soil temperature for the two intercrops allow us to conclude that wheat-maize intensification with the double mulching system can be used as an

  18. Significance of Mangroves in the Arid Environment of the Sultanate of Oman

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M.M. Fouda

    1996-01-01

    Full Text Available Little is known of the ecological role of the only species of mangrove, Avicemnia marina, in Oman. This study provides information on the physical habitat of three mangrove areas( Qurm, Mahout and Shinas in relation to the main features of each area ( i.e. community structure, soil and water analysis and biota. The climate of three mangrove areas and surrounding regions is hot and arid; all have very low rainfall (less than 100mm yr, high air temperature (mean 27”C, relative humidity (57.8% at Qurm and 72% at Mahout and Shinas , solar radiation ( more than 500 MVH cm2 and evaporation rates (more than 3000 mm yr2. Mangrove trees folowered during January-March, fruits matured during April- May, seedlings fell in June , seeds germinated in July-August and leaves were produced in September. Difference among sites included areal  extent ( 162 ha in Mabout, 74 ha in Quran and 53 ha in Shinas and high variability in mangrove structure within and between sites . The most obvious differences between sites related to tree height diameter , density and basal area. The increase in tree diameter was associated with increase in tree height and basal area, but an impressive relationship existed between tree diameter and density. Significant differences in soil texture and chemical analysis were found  within and between the three mangrove sites. Soil texture wasdominated by sand; however, site( highest at Qurm,, 32% and clay ( highest at Mahout , 10.1% were present in considerable amounts. Soils of Mhout had the highest organic matter (10.2% – totall nitrogeon ( 0.2% , available phosphorus ( 56.2ppm and sulphate ( 17.1 meq 100g contents compared to those from Qurm and Shinas. Water temperature ranged 22-38C and salinity showed small variations at Mahout ( 37-40 and Shinas ( 37-40 but at Qurm, salinity showed remarkable variation from fresh and brackish water (10 to hypersaline  water ( more than 100. Dissolved oxygen averaged 8.1( 4.8-12.7 mg and PH was

  19. FISCALITY – RELEVANT FACTOR INFLUENCING THE BUSINESS ENVIRONMENT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ionel MĂNDESCU

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Main tool for macroeconomic management - fiscal policy consists in establishing the levels of taxation and spending in order to influence macroeconomic performance. Fiscal policy, promoted by the government authorities of any contemporary state, is directed usually to achieving microeconomic and macroeconomic goals deriving from the roles the state must fulfill in the economy, respectively the allocative role, distributive, regulatory and the stabilizer role. Governmental authorities, through the production and supply of public goods that are financed at the expense of taxes or duties, or on the public debt, affect both individuals’ utility functions and production functions of economic agents in the private sector. At the macroeconomic level, fiscal policy decisions of governmental authorities relating to either public spending or taxation can be directed towards the stimulation of development. Fiscality is a business cost in investment, where the decisions are taken by representatives of the business environment.

  20. Exploring Marine Environments To Unravel Tolerance Mechanisms To Relevant Compounds

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Machado, Henrique; Cavaleiro, Mafalda; Nørholm, Morten

    2015-01-01

    Production of biofuels and chemicals using microorganisms has been a research driver in the last decades. The approach started with the engineering of metabolic pathways for production of compounds of interest, but it was soon realized that tolerance to the compounds being produced was one...... of interest, HPLC analyses were performed in order to distinguish between compound-degrading and tolerant bacteria. This led to the identification of seven tolerant and non-degrading isolates, the most interesting ones belonging to the genera Bacillus and Pseudomonas. These will be studied using genomic...... and transcriptomic approaches to identify the tolerance mechanisms used. Exploring new ecological niches, as contaminated marine environments allows the identification of naturally tolerant bacteria to the compounds of interest and most likely to the discovery of new mechanisms of tolerance....

  1. Vegetation mapping from high-resolution satellite images in the heterogeneous arid environments of Socotra Island (Yemen)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Malatesta, Luca; Attorre, Fabio; Altobelli, Alfredo; Adeeb, Ahmed; De Sanctis, Michele; Taleb, Nadim M.; Scholte, Paul T.; Vitale, Marcello

    2013-01-01

    Socotra Island (Yemen), a global biodiversity hotspot, is characterized by high geomorphological and biological diversity. In this study, we present a high-resolution vegetation map of the island based on combining vegetation analysis and classification with remote sensing. Two different image classification approaches were tested to assess the most accurate one in mapping the vegetation mosaic of Socotra. Spectral signatures of the vegetation classes were obtained through a Gaussian mixture distribution model, and a sequential maximum a posteriori (SMAP) classification was applied to account for the heterogeneity and the complex spatial pattern of the arid vegetation. This approach was compared to the traditional maximum likelihood (ML) classification. Satellite data were represented by a RapidEye image with 5 m pixel resolution and five spectral bands. Classified vegetation relevés were used to obtain the training and evaluation sets for the main plant communities. Postclassification sorting was performed to adjust the classification through various rule-based operations. Twenty-eight classes were mapped, and SMAP, with an accuracy of 87%, proved to be more effective than ML (accuracy: 66%). The resulting map will represent an important instrument for the elaboration of conservation strategies and the sustainable use of natural resources in the island.

  2. Recovery of microbial community structure and functioning after wildfire in semi-arid environments: optimising methods for monitoring and assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muñoz-Rojas, Miriam; Martini, Dylan; Erickson, Todd; Merritt, David; Dixon, Kingsley

    2015-04-01

    Introduction In semi-arid areas such as northern Western Australia, wildfires are a natural part of the environment and many ecosystems in these landscapes have evolved and developed a strong relationship with fire. Soil microbial communities play a crucial role in ecosystem processes by regulating the cycling of nutrients via decomposition, mineralization, and immobilization processes. Thus, the structure (e.g. soil microbial biomass) and functioning (e.g. soil microbial activity) of microbial communities, as well as their changes after ecosystem disturbance, can be useful indicators of soil quality and health recovery. In this research, we assess the impacts of fire on soil microbial communities and their recovery in a biodiverse semi-arid environment of Western Australia (Pilbara region). New methods for determining soil microbial respiration as an indicator of microbial activity and soil health are also tested. Methodology Soil samples were collected from 10 similar ecosystems in the Pilbara with analogous native vegetation, but differing levels of post-fire disturbance (i.e. 3 months, 1 year, 5, 7 and 14 years after wildfire). Soil microbial activity was measured with the Solvita test which determines soil microbial respiration rate based on the measurement of the CO2 burst of a dry soil after it is moistened. Soils were dried and re-wetted and a CO2 probe was inserted before incubation at constant conditions of 25°C during 24 h. Measurements were taken with a digital mini spectrometer. Microbial (bacteria and fungi) biomass and community composition were measured by phospholipid fatty acid analysis (PLFA). Results Immediately after the fire (i.e. 3 months), soil microbial activity and microbial biomass are similar to 14 years 'undisturbed' levels (53.18±3.68 ppm CO2-CO and 14.07±0.65 mg kg-1, respectively). However, after the first year post-fire, with larger plant productivity, microbial biomass and microbial activity increase rapidly, peaking after 5

  3. Soil salinity under deficit drip irrigation of potato and millet in in an arid environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kamel Nagaz

    2017-06-01

    received rainfall. For millet experiments, salinity was lowest under emitters and highest midway to the margin of wetted bands and higher soil salinity was maintained in the root zone with deficit irrigation treatments than full irrigation. Millet and potato yields were highest under Full treatment. Yields decreased almost linearly when applied water was reduced. However, reduction in quality was significantly important for DI60 and DI40. The analysis outcome of the crops sensitivity to salt indicated respectively for autumn, winter and spring potato and millet crops that thresholds are close to the value calculated from published salt tolerance data (1.9, 1.55, 1.85 vs. 1.7 dS/m for potato and 3.46 vs. 3.65 dS/m for millet but the slopes are considerably steeper (34, 54, 47 vs. 12%; 17 vs. 6.7%, apparently because of the combined effect of salinity and water stresses. The results provide information’s to farmers for formulating improved planning regarding irrigation management practices. The results support the practicality of using the full irrigation (100% of ETc methodology to optimize irrigation with saline water for potato and millet production and to control soil salinity. Under situations of water shortage, the deficit irrigation strategy (DI80 and DI60 is recommended as a tool to schedule irrigation of potato and millet crops in arid regions of Tunisia.

  4. Habitat‐ and rainfall‐dependent biodiversity responses to cattle removal in an arid woodland–grassland environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frank, Anke S K; Wardle, Glenda M; Dickman, Chris R; Greenville, Aaron C

    Biodiversity conservation in rangeland environments is often addressed by removing livestock, but inconsistent responses by biota mean that the efficacy of this form of management is hotly debated. Reasons for this inconsistency include the usually short duration and small spatial scale of manipulations compared to the area of grazing properties, as well as divergent responses amongst biota. In low-productivity arid environments, the pulse-reserve dynamic also complicates the outcome of manipulations. Here, we tested and extended these ideas in a heterogeneous desert environment in central Australia that consists of small patches of open woodland (gidgee) in a grassland (spinifex) matrix. Taking advantage of a controlled property-scale removal of cattle, and a rain event that stimulated productivity, we first quantified differences in the vegetation and small vertebrates of these two habitats, and then tracked the diversity, composition, and abundance of these biota for 6–19 months post-rain. We predicted that the two habitats would differ in the structure, composition, and reproductive output of their constituent plant species. We predicted also that the effects of cattle removal would interact with these habitat differences, with the abundance, richness, and diversity of small mammals and reptiles differing across habitats and grazing treatments. As anticipated, plant species composition in woodland was distinct from that in grassland and varied over time. The effects of cattle removal were habitat specific: Plant composition responded to de-stocking in woodland, but not in grassland; flowers were more abundant, and palatable plant cover also was greater following cessation of grazing pressure. The responses of small mammals but not reptiles showed some accord with our predictions, varying over time but inconsistently with treatment, and perhaps reflected high variability in capture success. We conclude that the timing and length of sampling are important when

  5. Latent heat loss and sweat gland histology of male goats in an equatorial semi-arid environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Melo Costa, Cíntia Carol; Maia, Alex Sandro Campos; Neto, José Domingues Fontenele; Oliveira, Steffan Edward Octávio; de Queiroz, João Paulo Araújo Fernandes

    2014-03-01

    The objective of this work was to quantify the heat loss by cutaneous evaporation of goats in an equatorial semi-arid environment. The latent heat loss from the body surfaces of these ten undefined breed goats was measured using a ventilated capsule in sun and shade and in the three body regions (neck, flank and hindquarters). Skin samples from these three regions were histologically analyzed to relate the quantity of sweat glands, the area of sweat glands and the epithelium thickness of each of these regions to the heat loss by cutaneous evaporation of the examined goats. The epithelium thickness that was measured varied significantly for body regions with different quantities and areas of sweat glands ( P < 0.01). Among the body regions that were examined, the samples from the neck demonstrated the highest epithelium thickness (16.23 ± 0.13 μm). However, the samples of sweat glands from the flank had the biggest area (43330.51 ± 778.71 μm2) and quantity per square centimeter (390 ± 9 cm-2). After the animals were exposed to sun, the flanks lost the greatest amount of heat by cutaneous evaporation (73.03 ± 1.75 W m-2) and possessed the highest surface temperatures (39.47 ± 0.18 °C). The histological characteristics may have influenced the heat loss by cutaneous evaporation that was observed in the flank region after the animals were exposed to sun.

  6. The relevance of the natural magnetic environment for life

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Morariu, V. Vasile

    2001-01-01

    Life on Earth evolved in a natural magnetic environment also known as the geomagnetic field (GMF). Since several decades it has been suggested that GMF and its variations may affect life. This became a more serious issue when it was suggested that mass extinction of species may have a connection with the GMF reversals. Such events involved exposure to possible large fluctuations but also to almost zero magnetic field (ZMF) for periods of say of at least hundreds of years. The present era of the space conquest also rise the interest for the behavior of life in conditions of ZMF since this is the characteristic of the interplanetary space. The strategy for investigation of the GMF role for terrestrial life is a) to look at the effects of the GMF fluctuations on various life related phenomena. This is a matter of correlating various statistical data (in the form of time series) and the corresponding time series for the geomagnetic activity and, b) to investigate in laboratory conditions the exposure of various species to ZMF conditions. While the first approach has the advantage that we may look into relatively long terms effects extending over several years or even tens of years, the second approach is limited to short term effects of days, weeks or several months at most. We use both types of approaches in our investigations. Our goal is twofold: 1) to identify the basic phenomena related to life which are influenced by ZMF and, 2) to sort out the species according to their sensitivity to ZMF. At present time we lack basic understanding of the role of GMF for life. According to our results, gathered for almost a decade of work, there is an inhibiting effect on the activity of some enzymes yet there are enzymes which are not sensitive to ZMF. We are trying to understand whether the conformation of some proteins or the kinetics of enzyme may change under such conditions. Among bacteria there is a clear diversity of responses as well as among various plant species but

  7. Performance Evaluation of Various Flat Plate Photovoltaic Modules in Hot and Arid Environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Alamoud, A. R. M.

    2000-01-01

    The present paper reports the results of a simplified methods for evaluating the performance of selected photovoltaic (PV?) modules in use in Saudi Arabia and makes a comparative assessment at standard reporting conditions. Experimental results, normalized to standard reporting conditions using the two-axis translation I-V model have revealed that all PV module parameters, except Isc decreased during the period the modules were exposed to outdoor environment. The degradation resulted in a decrease in the module efficiency of 0.22% to 11% depending on the make of the module. Moreover, the measured PV module parameters were found to differ from manufacturer's specified values yielding a decrease in efficiency (Author)

  8. Adaptation of the Egg of the Desert Beetle, Microdera punctipennis (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae), to Arid Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Yan; Shi, Meng; Hou, Xiaojuan; Meng, Shanshan; Zhang, Fuchun; Ma, Ji

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Microdera punctipennis Kaszab (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae) is an endemic species in Guerbantonggut desert in China. To explore the ways that M. punctipennis egg adapts to dry desert environment, morphological characteristics of the egg was investigated along with the egg of the nondesert beetle Tenebrio molitor (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae). Water loss rate and survival rate of these eggs under different dry treatments (relative humidity0, 10, and 20%) were measured to evaluate the desiccation resistance of the eggs at different developmental stages (day 0, 2, and 5 eggs). Our results showed that the 50-egg weight in T. molitor was heavier than M. punctipennis , while the 50-first-instar larva weight in T. molitor was almost the same as in M. punctipennis . The water loss rate of M. punctipennis egg under dry conditions was significantly lower than T. molitor , and the egg survival rate was significantly higher than T. molitor . The estimated developmental threshold temperature of M. punctipennis egg was 18.30°C, and the critical thermal maximum of M. punctipennis egg is above 39°C. These features partly account for the adaptability of M. punctipennis to desert environment in egg stage. PMID:25525108

  9. Impact of anthropogenic climate change and human activities on environment and ecosystem services in arid regions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahmoud, Shereif H; Gan, Thian Y

    2018-08-15

    The implications of anthropogenic climate change, human activities and land use change (LUC) on the environment and ecosystem services in the coastal regions of Saudi Arabia were analyzed. Earth observations data was used to drive land use categories between 1970 and 2014. Next, a Markov-CA model was developed to characterize the dynamic of LUC between 2014 and 2100 and their impacts on regions' climate and environment. Non-parametric change point and trend detection algorithms were applied to temperature, precipitation and greenhouse gases data to investigate the presence of anthropogenic climate change. Lastly, climate models were used to project future climate change between 2014 and 2100. The analysis of LUC revealed that between 1970 and 2014, built up areas experienced the greatest growth during the study period, leading to a significant monotonic trend. Urban areas increased by 2349.61km 2 between 1970 and 2014, an average increase of >53.4km 2 /yr. The projected LUC between 2014 and 2100 indicate a continued increase in urban areas and irrigated cropland. Human alteration of land use from natural vegetation and forests to other uses after 1970, resulted in a loss, degradation, and fragmentation, all of which usually have devastating effects on the biodiversity of the region. Resulting in a statistically significant change point in temperature anomaly after 1968 with a warming trend of 0.24°C/decade and a downward trend in precipitation anomaly of 12.2mm/decade. Total greenhouse gas emissions including all anthropogenic sources showed a statistically significant positive trend of 78,090Kt/decade after 1991. This is reflected in the future projection of temperature anomaly between 1900 and 2100 with a future warming trend of 0.19°C/decade. In conclusion, human activities, industrial revelation, deforestation, land use transformation and increase in greenhouse gases had significant implications on the environment and ecosystem services of the study area

  10. CONTRIBUTION TO THE STUDY OF DUNES FIXATION IN THE SEMI-ARIDE ENVIRONMENT: ALGERIA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saida Akkouche

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available In our study,of dune fixation , spontaneous vegetation was installed inside the grid. Over the years, plant diversity has improved with74 species in 2009 (22 families and 61 genera, demonstrating a significant reduction of troubles, caused especially by the erosive action of winds and other microclimate factors. Indeed, in non-fixed dunes (mechanical and biological fixation vegetation is particularly present in the lower slopes of the dunes shelter where humidity is relatively high and the soil fertile. But in fixed environments, vegetation climbs to the top of dunes, improving: I The Microclimate; creating a gentle atmosphere under the effect of shade and transpiration; II Floor; increasing its humidity and improving its fertility through the provision of litter. On all of the fixed dunes and under the feet of planted species a surface layer of soil , sometimes reduced in a few centimeters, is formed by fine particles of clays and acting as a shield which reduces evaporation and therefore allows a relatively large water retention preserved for a longer period of the year. This layer is called "Self-mulching" is a colloidal material which sticks the sand after a biological dune fixation.

  11. Thermoluminescence dating of soils in a semi-arid environment, Yucca Mountain area, Southern Nevada, USA

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mahan, S.A.; Paces, J.B.; Peterman, Z.E.

    1995-01-01

    Yucca Mountain, Nevada, is currently being investigated as a potential nuclear waste repository. Because radionuclides must be isolated over a ten to several hundred thousand year time span, an assessment of the performance depends in part on accurate reconstruction of the Quaternary geologic and hydrologic history of the mountain. Reliable geochronology in an oxidizing environment dominated by coarse-grained, clastic surficial deposits has become a central issue for several studies including paleoseismic reconstruction, determination of rates of erosion and deposition, and the history of regional water-table fluctuations documented by ground-water discharge deposits. Thermoluminescence (TL) dating of polymineralic silt fractions in a variety of surface deposits has become an important component of the Quaternary dating strategy, along with uranium-series disequilibrium dating of secondary carbonate and opaline silica, and to a lesser extent, radiocarbon dating of carbonate components. Although the complex mineralogy of these materials contributes to greater amounts of scatter in their TL response relative to typical quartzofeldspathic loess and dune deposits, the derived ages are reproducible, consistent with internal stratigraphy, and generally concordant with other available geochronology

  12. Soil, plant, and structural considerations for surface barriers in arid environments: Application of results from studies in the Mojave Desert near Beatty, Nevada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Andraski, Brian J.; Prudic, David E.; ,

    1997-01-01

    The suitability of a waste-burial site depends on hydrologic processes that can affect the near-surface water balance. In addition, the loss of burial trench integrity by erosion and subsidence of trench covers may increase the likelihood of infiltration and percolation, thereby reducing the effectiveness of the site in isolating waste. Although the main components of the water balance may be defined, direct measurements can be difficult, and actual data for specific locations are seldom available. A prevalent assumption is that little or no precipitation will percolate to buried wastes at an arid site. Thick unsaturated zones, which are common to arid regions, are thought to slow water movement and minimize the risk of waste migration to the underlying water table. Thus, reliance is commonly placed on the natural system to isolate contaminants at waste-burial sites in the arid West.Few data are available to test assumptions about the natural soil-water flow systems at arid sites, and even less is known about how the natural processes are altered by construction of a waste-burial facility. The lack of data is the result of technical complexity of hydraulic characterization of the dry, stony soils, and insufficient field studies that account for the extreme temporal and spatial variations in precipitation, soils, and plants in arid regions. In 1976, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) began a long-term study at a waste site in the Mojave Desert. This paper summarizes the findings of ongoing investigations done under natural-site and waste-burial conditions, and discusses how this information may be applied to the design of surface barriers for waste sites in arid environments.The waste-burial site is in one of the most arid parts of the United States and is about 40 km northeast of Death Valley, near Beatty, Nev. (Figure 1). Precipitation averaged 108 mm/yr during 1981-1992. The water table is 85-115 m below land surface (Fischer, 1992). Sediments are largely alluvial

  13. Chemical weathering in response to tectonic uplift and denudation rate in a semi-arid environment, southeast Spain

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ameijeiras-Mariño, Yolanda; Opfergelt, Sophie; Schoonejans, Jérôme; Vanacker, Veerle; Sonnet, Philippe; Delmelle, Pierre

    2014-05-01

    Soil thickness reflects the balance between soil production and denudation by chemical weathering and physical erosion. At topographic steady state, the soil weathering intensity is expected to be higher at low denudation rate (transport-limited) than at high denudation rate (weathering-limited). We tested this hypothesis for the first time in a semi-arid environment where chemical weathering processes are generally slow. The study site is the Internal Zone of the Betic Cordillera in Southeast Spain, Almeria province. The lithology is mainly mica-schist and quartzite with local presence of phyllite. Three catchments (EST, FIL, CAB) were selected upstream local faults along a gradient of increasing uplift rates (10-170 mm/kyr) and increasing denudation rates (20-250 mm/kyr), following the sequence EST

  14. Regional differences in the surface temperature of Naked Neck laying hens in a semi-arid environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Souza, João Batista Freire; de Arruda, Alex Martins Varela; Domingos, Hérica Girlane Tertulino; de Macedo Costa, Leonardo Lelis

    2013-05-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate the regional differences in the surface temperature of Naked Neck hens that were subjected to different temperatures in a semi-arid environment. The surface temperature was measured in four body regions (face, neck, legs and feathered area) of 60 Naked Neck hens. The following environmental variables were measured at the center of the shed: the black globe temperature (T G ), air temperature (T A ), wind speed (U) and relative humidity (R H ). The T A was divided into three classes: 1 (24.0-26.0 °C), 2 (26.1-28.9 °C) and 3 (29.0-31.0 °C). An analysis of variance was performed by the least squares method and a comparison of the means by the Tukey-Kramer test. The results showed a significant effect of T A class, the body region and the interaction between these two effects on the surface temperature. There was no significant difference between the T A classes for the face and neck. The legs and feathered area showed significant differences between the T A classes. Regarding the effect of body regions within each T A class, there was a significant difference among all regions in the three T A classes. In all T A classes the neck had the highest average followed by the face and legs. The feathered area showed the lowest average of the different T A classes. In conclusion, this study showed that there are regional differences in the surface temperature of Naked Neck hens, with the legs acting as thermal windows.

  15. ARID1B is a specific vulnerability in ARID1A-mutant cancers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helming, Katherine C; Wang, Xiaofeng; Wilson, Boris G; Vazquez, Francisca; Haswell, Jeffrey R; Manchester, Haley E; Kim, Youngha; Kryukov, Gregory V; Ghandi, Mahmoud; Aguirre, Andrew J; Jagani, Zainab; Wang, Zhong; Garraway, Levi A; Hahn, William C; Roberts, Charles W M

    2014-03-01

    Recent studies have revealed that ARID1A, encoding AT-rich interactive domain 1A (SWI-like), is frequently mutated across a variety of human cancers and also has bona fide tumor suppressor properties. Consequently, identification of vulnerabilities conferred by ARID1A mutation would have major relevance for human cancer. Here, using a broad screening approach, we identify ARID1B, an ARID1A homolog whose gene product is mutually exclusive with ARID1A in SWI/SNF complexes, as the number 1 gene preferentially required for the survival of ARID1A-mutant cancer cell lines. We show that loss of ARID1B in ARID1A-deficient backgrounds destabilizes SWI/SNF and impairs proliferation in both cancer cells and primary cells. We also find that ARID1A and ARID1B are frequently co-mutated in cancer but that ARID1A-deficient cancers retain at least one functional ARID1B allele. These results suggest that loss of ARID1A and ARID1B alleles cooperatively promotes cancer formation but also results in a unique functional dependence. The results further identify ARID1B as a potential therapeutic target for ARID1A-mutant cancers.

  16. The physical environment and its relevance to customer satisfaction in boutique hotels; Hotel Haven, Helsinki

    OpenAIRE

    Jysmä, Ekaterina

    2012-01-01

    Object of this research is physical environment of the boutique hotel named Haven. As there is lack of the researches concerning physical environment role in the boutique hotels, this paper could be useful both for the studied hotel as well as for the other boutique hotels managers and owners. Moreover, it could be useful for the potential customers of Hotel Haven. Main topic of this research is the importance and relevance of the physical environment in Hotel Haven, mostly its impact o...

  17. Re-use of wastewater for a sustainable forest production and climate change mitigation under arid environments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Cristina Monteverdi

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available 800x600 Over the last decades biotic and abiotic constrains together with human actions are determining a substantial environmental pressure, particularly in dry lands as the south of the Mediterranean region. From very long time, indeed, simultaneous drivers such as demographic growth, climate change and socio-economic factors are weakening the previous homeostasis between human needs and natural resources on the regional scale.Resulting pressures are determining environmental degradation and increase of desertification risk for the arid and semiarid lands. Water quality and availability are both crucial points limiting people well-being and livelihoods in the same context. Scarcity of fresh water and heavy and mismanaged production of wastewater are the main factors affecting water resources. Increasing pollution of soil and ground waters reduces the possibility of sustainable development of local communities with relevant social consequences. The FAO's supporting program in north Africa aims to: a develop new and cheaper phytotechnologies (e.g. constructed wetland system; innovative treatment system for reuse of waste water for fertigation; b treat wastewater for water quality protection; c promote land recovery by means of sustainable multipurpose forestry; d adopt bioengineering interventions to stop slopes erosion and protect urban, and semi-urban infrastructures; e create pilot demonstrative areas to test multi-purpose sustainable agroforestry systems. Within this frame, an integrated approach was designed to promote innovative sustainable water management and multipurpose forestry, in order to mitigate the effects of climate change, promote land recovery, and improve the livelihoods of local population. The present paper aims to provide an overview of the FAO project GCP/RAB/013/ITA. Particularly, two pilot studies are shown and discussed. Normal 0 14 false false false IT X-NONE X-NONE MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 /* Style Definitions

  18. The impact of unconfined mine tailings in residential areas from a mining town in a semi-arid environment: Nacozari, Sonora, Mexico.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meza-Figueroa, Diana; Maier, Raina M; de la O-Villanueva, Margarita; Gómez-Alvarez, Agustín; Moreno-Zazueta, Alan; Rivera, Jacinto; Campillo, Alberto; Grandlic, Christopher J; Anaya, Ricardo; Palafox-Reyes, Juan

    2009-09-01

    Past mining activities in northern Mexico left a legacy of delerict landscapes devoid of vegetation and seasonal formation of salt efflorescence. Metal content was measured in mine tailings, efflorescent salts, soils, road dust, and residential soils to investigate contamination. Climatic effects such as heavy wind and rainfall events can have great impact on the dispersion of metals in semi-arid areas, since soils are typically sparsely vegetated. Geochemical analysis of this site revealed that even though total metal content in mine tailings was relatively low (e.g. Cu= 1000 mg kg(-1)), metals including Mn, Ba, Zn, and Cu were all found at significantly higher levels in efflorescence salts formed by evaporation on the tailings impoundment surface following the rainy season (e.g. Cu= 68,000 mg kg(-1)). Such efflorescent fine-grained salts are susceptible to wind erosion resulting in increased metal spread to nearby residential soils. Our results highlight the importance of seasonally dependent salt-formation and wind erosion in determining risk levels associated with potential inhalation or ingestion of airborne particulates originating from contaminated sites such as tailings impoundments. In low metal-content mine tailings located in arid and semi-arid environments, efflorescence salts could represent a human health risk and a challenge for plant establishment in mine tailings.

  19. Effects of vegetation, structural and human factors on the thermal performance of residences in a semi-arid environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kliman, Susan Schaefer

    The objectives of the study were to examine and quantify the relationship between vegetation and the thermal performance of residences in a hot arid environment. Also explored were structural and human influences on residential energy consumption. A primary goal was to determine how much energy savings could be realized through strategic planting of vegetation. This study sought to validate previous simulation and modeling studies that documented annual savings of 2--11% on residential cooling loads. Also examined was whether shrubs and grass could provide a benefit similar to that of trees, assessing the importance of evapotranspiration versus shading. An empirical study was conducted using 105 existing homes in the metropolitan area of Tucson, Arizona. Data included construction type, amenities, living habits of occupants, and energy consumption for heating and cooling over a two-year period. These data were analyzed with a combination of bivariate and multivariate analyses to examine direct correlations between specific variables and energy consumption and the relative importance of each variable. These analyses were unable to document any measurable savings in summer cooling loads as a result of vegetation adjacent to the house, and the presence of trees actually increased the winter heating load by 2%. While trees provide important shading benefits, and can reduce the direct solar gain through the windows of a house, analysis demonstrated that structural and human factors were the most important aspects in residential energy consumption. The size of the house is of primary importance. Houses with evaporative cooling consumed significantly less energy than those with air conditioning. Thermostat settings and habits regarding thermostat operation were the most critical human factors. Occupants who adjusted their thermostats a few degrees cooler in winter and warmer in summer realized measurable savings. Occupants who turned their heating and cooling equipment

  20. Response of water vapour D-excess to land–atmosphere interactions in a semi-arid environment

    KAUST Repository

    Parkes, Stephen; McCabe, Matthew; Griffiths, Alan D.; Wang, Lixin; Chambers, Scott; Ershadi, Ali; Williams, Alastair G.; Strauss, Josiah; Element, Adrian

    2017-01-01

    The stable isotopic composition of water vapour provides information about moisture sources and processes difficult to obtain with traditional measurement techniques. Recently, it has been proposed that the D-excess of water vapour (d =δH-8× δO) can provide a diagnostic tracer of continental moisture recycling. However, D-excess exhibits a diurnal cycle that has been observed across a variety of ecosystems and may be influenced by a range of processes beyond regional-scale moisture recycling, including local evaporation (ET) fluxes. There is a lack of measurements of D-excess in evaporation (ET) fluxes, which has made it difficult to assess how ET fluxes modify the Dexcess in water vapour (d). With this in mind, we employed a chamber-based approach to directly measure D-excess in ET (d) fluxes. We show that ET fluxes imposed a negative forcing on the ambient vapour and could not explain the higher daytime d values. The low d observed here was sourced from a soil water pool that had undergone an extended drying period, leading to low D-excess in the soil moisture pool. A strong correlation between daytime d and locally measured relative humidity was consistent with an oceanic moisture source, suggesting that remote hydrological processes were the major contributor to daytime d variability. During the early evening, ET fluxes into a shallow nocturnal inversion layer caused a lowering of d values near the surface. In addition, transient mixing of vapour with a higher D-excess from above the nocturnal inversion modified these values, causing large variability during the night. These results indicate d can generally be expected to show large spatial and temporal variability and to depend on the soil moisture state. For long periods between rain events, common in semi-arid environments, ET would be expected to impose negative forcing on the surface d. Spatial and temporal variability of D-excess in ET fluxes therefore needs to be considered when using d to study

  1. Response of water vapour D-excess to land–atmosphere interactions in a semi-arid environment

    KAUST Repository

    Parkes, Stephen

    2017-01-27

    The stable isotopic composition of water vapour provides information about moisture sources and processes difficult to obtain with traditional measurement techniques. Recently, it has been proposed that the D-excess of water vapour (d =δH-8× δO) can provide a diagnostic tracer of continental moisture recycling. However, D-excess exhibits a diurnal cycle that has been observed across a variety of ecosystems and may be influenced by a range of processes beyond regional-scale moisture recycling, including local evaporation (ET) fluxes. There is a lack of measurements of D-excess in evaporation (ET) fluxes, which has made it difficult to assess how ET fluxes modify the Dexcess in water vapour (d). With this in mind, we employed a chamber-based approach to directly measure D-excess in ET (d) fluxes. We show that ET fluxes imposed a negative forcing on the ambient vapour and could not explain the higher daytime d values. The low d observed here was sourced from a soil water pool that had undergone an extended drying period, leading to low D-excess in the soil moisture pool. A strong correlation between daytime d and locally measured relative humidity was consistent with an oceanic moisture source, suggesting that remote hydrological processes were the major contributor to daytime d variability. During the early evening, ET fluxes into a shallow nocturnal inversion layer caused a lowering of d values near the surface. In addition, transient mixing of vapour with a higher D-excess from above the nocturnal inversion modified these values, causing large variability during the night. These results indicate d can generally be expected to show large spatial and temporal variability and to depend on the soil moisture state. For long periods between rain events, common in semi-arid environments, ET would be expected to impose negative forcing on the surface d. Spatial and temporal variability of D-excess in ET fluxes therefore needs to be considered when using d to study

  2. Employee health-relevant personality traits are associated with the psychosocial work environment and leadership.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villaume, Karin; Hasson, Dan

    2017-01-01

    Little is known about personality in relation to assessments of the psychosocial work environment and leadership. Therefore the objective of this study is to explore possible associations and differences in mean values between employee health-relevant personality traits and assessments of the psychosocial work environment and leadership behaviors. 754 survey responses from ten organizations were selected from a large-scale intervention study. The Health-relevant Personality 5 inventory was used to assess personality. Five dimensions of the psychosocial work environment were assessed with 38 items from the QPS Nordic and 6 items from the Developmental Leadership Questionnaire were used to assess leadership behavior. Positive correlations were found between Hedonic capacity (facet of Extraversion) and perceptions of the psychosocial work environment and leadership behavior. Negative correlations were found for Negative affectivity (facet of Neuroticism), Antagonism (facet of Agreeableness), Impulsivity (facet of Conscientiousness) and Alexithymia (facet of Openness). There were also significant differences in mean values of all work environment indicators between levels of health-relevant personality traits. Those with higher levels of hedonic capacity had higher (better) perceptions compared to those with lower levels. Those with higher levels of negative affectivity had lower (worse) perceptions compared to those with lower levels. The findings show a clear association between employee health-relevant personality traits and assessments of the psychosocial work environment and leadership behavior. Personality can be important to take into consideration for leaders when interpreting survey results and when designing organizational interventions.

  3. Nitrogen and plant population change radiation capture and utilization capacity of sunflower in semi-arid environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Awais, Muhammad; Wajid, Aftab; Bashir, Muhammad Usman; Habib-Ur-Rahman, Muhammad; Raza, Muhammad Aown Sammar; Ahmad, Ashfaq; Saleem, Muhammad Farrukh; Hammad, Hafiz Mohkum; Mubeen, Muhammad; Saeed, Umer; Arshad, Muhammad Naveed; Fahad, Shah; Nasim, Wajid

    2017-07-01

    sunflower. High temperature during the flowering stage in 2013 shortened the crop maturity duration, which reduced the LAI, leaf area duration (LAD), crop growth rate (CGR), TDM, AY, Fi, Sa, and RUE of sunflower. Our results clearly revealed that RUE was enhanced as plant population and N application rates were increased and biomass assimilation in semi-arid environments varied with radiation capture capacity of sunflower.

  4. Sustainability Evaluation Framework of Urban Stormwater Drainage Options for Arid Environments Using Hydraulic Modeling and Multicriteria Decision-Making

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammad Alhumaid

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Stormwater drainage systems in urban areas located in arid environmental regions generally consist of storm-sewer networks and man-made ponds for the collection and disposal of runoff, respectively. Due to expansion in cities’ boundaries as a result of population growth, the capacity of existing drainage systems has been exhausted. Therefore, such systems overflow even during the smaller (than the design return period floods. At the same time, changing rainfall patterns and flash floods due to climate change are other phenomena that need appropriate attention. Consequently, the municipalities in arid environmental regions are facing challenges for effective decision-making concerning (i improvement needs for drainage networks for safe collection of stormwater, (ii selection of most feasible locations for additional ponds, and (iii evaluation of other suitable options, such as micro-tunneling. In this research, a framework has been developed to evaluate different stormwater drainage options for urban areas of arid regions. Rainfall-runoff modeling was performed with the help of Hydrological-Engineering-Centre, Hydrological-Modelling-System (HEC-HMS. To evaluate the efficacy of each option for handling a given design flood, hydraulic-modeling was performed using SewerGEMS. Meteorological and topographical data was gathered from the Municipality of Buraydah and processed to generate different inputs required for hydraulic modeling. Finally, multicriteria decision-making (MCDM was performed to evaluate all the options on the basis of four sustainability criteria, i.e., flood risk, economic viability, environmental impacts, and technical constraints. Criteria weights were established through group decision-making using the Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP. Preference-Ranking-Organization-Method for Enrichment-Evaluation (PROMETHEE II was used for final ranking of stormwater drainage options. The proposed framework has been implemented on a case of

  5. Review of Antimicrobial Resistance in the Environment and its Relevance to Environmental Regulators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew C Singer

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available The environment is increasingly being recognised for the role it might play in the global spread of clinically-relevant antibiotic resistance. Environmental regulators monitor and control many of the pathways responsible for the release of resistance-driving chemicals into the environment (e.g., antimicrobials, metals, biocides. Hence, environmental regulators should be contributing significantly to the development of global and national antimicrobial resistance (AMR action plans. It is argued that the lack of environment-facing mitigation actions included in existing AMR action plans is likely a function of our poor fundamental understanding of many of the key issues. Here, we aim to present the problem with AMR in the environment through the lens of an environmental regulator, using the Environment Agency (England’s regulator as an example from which parallels can be drawn globally. The issues that are pertinent to environmental regulators are drawn out to answer: What are the drivers and pathways of AMR? How do these relate to the normal work, powers and duties of environmental regulators? What are the knowledge gaps that hinder the delivery of environmental protection from AMR? We offer several thought experiments for how different mitigation strategies might proceed. We conclude that: 1 AMR Action Plans do not tackle all the potentially relevant pathways and drivers of AMR in the environment; and 2 AMR Action Plans are deficient, in part, because the science to inform policy is lacking and this needs to be addressed.

  6. Where does blue water go in the semi-arid area of northern China under changing environments?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L. Ren

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available River flow regimes in the semi-arid region of northern China show a decreasing trend in terms of quantity. River runoff (i.e. blue water reduction within the Laohahe catchment, the source area of the Liaohe River basin, manifests the aridity that exists widely in northern China. According to the water balance equation, during the past half-century, observed streamflow records in the Laohahe catchment show that blue water was re-directed to green water flow (i.e. evapotranspiration over annual and decadal time scales, whereas precipitation did not vary much. Human activities and land-use/land-cover changes are the fundamental reasons for such runoff change. In the studied catchment, extensive land reclamation for agriculture, water withdrawal from streams, and abstraction from aquifers for irrigation are the direct and main causes leading to the decrease in observed blue water. These factors further demonstrate that a land-use decision is also a decision about water. Therefore, there is a need for an integrated modelling framework to intrinsically link climate, hydrological, and agricultural models with social and economic analyses.

  7. On the Relevance of Using OpenWireless Sensor Networks in Environment Monitoring

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antoine B. Bagula

    2009-06-01

    Full Text Available This paper revisits the problem of the readiness for field deployments of wireless- sensor networks by assessing the relevance of using Open Hardware and Software motes for environment monitoring. We propose a new prototype wireless sensor network that finetunes SquidBee motes to improve the life-time and sensing performance of an environment monitoring system that measures temperature, humidity and luminosity. Building upon two outdoor sensing scenarios, we evaluate the performance of the newly proposed energy-aware prototype solution in terms of link quality when expressed by the Received Signal Strength, Packet Loss and the battery lifetime. The experimental results reveal the relevance of using the Open Hardware and Software motes when setting up outdoor wireless sensor networks.

  8. Radiating despite a Lack of Character: Ecological Divergence among Closely Related, Morphologically Similar Honeyeaters (Aves: Meliphagidae) Co-occurring in Arid Australian Environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Eliot T; Wagner, Sarah K; Harmon, Luke J; Ricklefs, Robert E

    2017-02-01

    Quantifying the relationship between form and function can inform use of morphology as a surrogate for ecology. How the strength of this relationship varies continentally can inform understanding of evolutionary radiations; for example, does the relationship break down when certain lineages invade and diversify in novel habitats? The 75 species of Australian honeyeaters (Meliphagidae) are morphologically and ecologically diverse, with species feeding on nectar, insects, fruit, and other resources. We investigated Meliphagidae ecomorphology and community structure by (1) quantifying the concordance between morphology and ecology (foraging behavior), (2) estimating rates of trait evolution in relation to the packing of ecological space, and (3) comparing phylogenetic and trait community structure across the broad environmental gradients of the continent. We found that morphology explained 37% of the variance in ecology (and 62% vice versa), and we uncovered well-known bivariate relationships among the multivariate ecomorphological data. Ecological trait diversity declined less rapidly than phylogenetic diversity along a gradient of decreasing precipitation. We employ a new method (trait fields) and extend another (phylogenetic fields) to show that while species in phylogenetically clustered, arid-environment assemblages are similar morphologically, they are as varied in foraging behavior as those from more diverse assemblages. Thus, although closely related and similar morphologically, these arid-adapted species have diverged in ecological space to a similar degree as their mesic counterparts.

  9. Modeling groundwater quality in an arid agricultural environment in the face of an uncertain climate: the case of Mewat District, India

    Science.gov (United States)

    Weber, M. C.; Ward, A. S.; Muste, M.

    2014-12-01

    The salinization of groundwater resources is a widespread problem in arid agricultural environments. In Mewat District (Haryana, India), groundwater salinity has rendered much of the accessible supply unfit for human consumption or agriculture. Historically, this closed basin retained fresh pockets of water at the foothills of the Aravalli Hills, where monsoonal precipitation runoff from the mountains was recharged through infiltration or facilitated by man-made structures. To date, an increasing number of pumps supply the region with fresh water for consumption and agriculture leading to shrinking the freshwater zone at an accelerated pace. The potential for increased human consumption corroborated with the effects of climate change bring uncertainty about the future of water security for the Mewat communities, most of them critically bound to the existence of local water. This study addresses the sustainability of the freshwater supply under a range of land interventions and climate scenarios, using a 2-D groundwater flow and transport model. Our results quantify potential futures for this arid, groundwater-dependent location, using numerical groundwater modeling to quantify interactions between human water use, infrastructure, and climate. Outcomes of this modeling study will inform an NGO active in the area on sustainable management of groundwater resources.

  10. Soil water effect on crop growth, leaf gas exchange, water and radiation use efficiency of Saccharum spontaneum L. ssp. aegyptiacum (Willd. Hackel in semi-arid Mediterranean environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Danilo Scordia

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Great effort has been placed to identify the most suited bioenergy crop under different environments and management practices, however, there is still need to find new genetic resources for constrained areas. For instance, South Mediterranean area is strongly affected by prolonged drought, high vapour pressure deficit (VPD and extremely high temperatures during summertime. In the present work we investigated the soil water effect on crop growth and leaf gas exchange of Saccharum spontaneum L. ssp. aegyptiacum (Willd. Hackel, a perennial, rhizomatous, herbaceous grass. Furthermore, the net increase of biomass production per unit light intercepted [radiation use efficiency (RUE] and per unit water transpired [water use efficiency (WUE] was also studied. To this end a field trial was carried out imposing three levels of soil water availability (I100, I50 and I0, corresponding to 100%, 50% and 0% of ETm restutition under a semi-arid Mediterranean environment. Leaf area index (LAI, stem height, biomass dry matter yield, CO2 assimilation rate, and transpiration rate resulted significantly affected by measurement time and irrigation treatment, with the highest values in I100 and the lowest in I0. RUE was the highest in I100 followed by I50 and I0; on the other hand, WUE was higher in I0 than I50 and I100. At LAI values greater than 2.0, 85% photosynthetically active radiation was intercepted by the Saccharum stand, irrespective of the irrigation treatment. Saccharum spontaneum spp. aegyptiacum is a potential species for biomass production in environment characterized by drought stress, high temperatures and high VPD, as those of Southern Europe and similar semi-arid areas.

  11. Two-dimensional microclimate distribution within and above a crop canopy in an arid environment: Modeling and observational studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naot, O.; Mahrer, Y.

    1991-08-01

    A numerical two-dimensional model based on higher-order closure assumptions is developed to simulate the horizontal microclimate distribution over an irrigated field in arid surroundings. The model considers heat, mass, momentum, and radiative fluxes in the soil-plant-atmosphere system. Its vertical domain extends through the whole planetary boundary layer. The model requires temporal solar and atmospheric radiation data, as well as temporal boundary conditions for wind-speed, air temperature, and humidity. These boundary conditions are specified by an auxiliary mesoscale model and are incorporated in the microscale model by a nudging method. Vegetation parameters (canopy height, leaf-angle orientation distribution, leaf-area index, photometric properties, root-density distribution), soil texture, and soil-hydraulic and photometric properties are considered. The model is tested using meteorological data obtained in a drip-irrigated cotton field located in an extremely arid area, where strong fetch effects are expected. Four masts located 50 m before the leading edge of the field and 10, 30, and 100 m inward from the leading edge are used to measure various meteorological parameters and their horizontal and vertical gradients. Calculated values of air and soil temperatures, wind-speed, net radiation and soil, latent, and sensible heat fluxes agreed well with measurements. Large horizontal gradients of air temperature are both observed and measured within the canopy in the first 40 m of the leading edge. Rate of evapotranspiration at both the upwind and the downwind edges of the field are higher by more than 15% of the midfield value. Model calculations show that a stable thermal stratification is maintained above the whole field for 24 h. The aerodynamic and thermal internal boundary layer (IBL) growth is proportional to the square root of the fetch. This is also the observed rate of growth of the thermal IBL over a cool sea surface.

  12. Relevance of biotic pathways to the long-term regulation of nuclear-waste disposal. Topical report on reference western arid low-level sites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McKenzie, D.H.; Cadwell, L.L.; Eberhardt, L.E.; Kennedy, W.E. Jr.; Peloquin, R.A.; Simmons, M.A.

    1982-10-01

    The purpose of the work reported here was to develop an order of magnitude estimate for the potential dose to man resulting from biotic transport mechanisms at a reference western arid low-level waste site. A description of the reference site is presented that includes the waste inventories, site characteristics and biological communities. Parameter values for biotic transport processes are based on data reported in current literature. Transport and exposure scenarios are developed for assessing biotic transport during 100 years following site closure. Calculations of radionuclide decay and waste container decomposition are made to estimate the quantities available for biotic transport. Dose to a man occupying the reference site following the 100 years of biotic transport are calculated. These dose estimates are compared to dose estimates for the intruder-agricultural scenario reported in the DEIS for 10 CFR 61 (NRC). Dose to man estimates as a result of biotic transport are estimated to be of the same order of magnitude as the dose resulting from the more commonly evaluated human intrusion scenario. The reported lack of potential importance of biotic transport at low-level waste sites in earlier assessment studies is not confirmed by the findings presented in this report. These results indicate that biotic transport has the potential to influence low-level waste site performance. Through biotic transport, radionuclides may be moved to locations where they can enter exposure pathways to man

  13. Corrosion on Mars: An Investigation of Corrosion Mechanisms Under Relevant Simulated Martian Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calle, Luz M.; Li, Wenyan; Johansen, Michael R.; Buhrow, Jerry W.; Calle, Carlos I.

    2017-01-01

    This one-year project was selected by NASA's Science Innovation Fund in FY17 to address Corrosion on Mars which is a problem that has not been addressed before. Corrosion resistance is one of the most important properties in selecting materials for landed spacecraft and structures that will support surface operations for the human exploration of Mars. Currently, the selection of materials is done by assuming that the corrosion behavior of a material on Mars will be the same as that on Earth. This is understandable given that there is no data regarding the corrosion resistance of materials in the Mars environment. However, given that corrosion is defined as the degradation of a metal that results from its chemical interaction with the environment, it cannot be assumed that corrosion is going to be the same in both environments since they are significantly different. The goal of this research is to develop a systematic approach to understand corrosion of spacecraft materials on Mars by conducting a literature search of available data, relevant to corrosion in the Mars environment, and by performing preliminary laboratory experiments under relevant simulated Martian conditions. This project was motivated by the newly found evidence for the presence of transient liquid brines on Mars that coincided with the suggestion, by a team of researchers, that some of the structural degradation observed on Curiosity's wheels may be caused by corrosive interactions with the brines, while the most significant damage was attributed to rock scratching. An extensive literature search on data relevant to Mars corrosion confirmed the need for further investigation of the interaction between materials used for spacecraft and structures designed to support long-term surface operations on Mars. Simple preliminary experiments, designed to look at the interaction between an aerospace aluminum alloy (AA7075-T73) and the gases present in the Mars atmosphere, at 20degC and a pressure of 700 Pa

  14. Integrated assessment of policy interventions for promoting sustainable irrigation in semi-arid environments: a hydro-economic modeling approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blanco-Gutiérrez, Irene; Varela-Ortega, Consuelo; Purkey, David R

    2013-10-15

    Sustaining irrigated agriculture to meet food production needs while maintaining aquatic ecosystems is at the heart of many policy debates in various parts of the world, especially in arid and semi-arid areas. Researchers and practitioners are increasingly calling for integrated approaches, and policy-makers are progressively supporting the inclusion of ecological and social aspects in water management programs. This paper contributes to this policy debate by providing an integrated economic-hydrologic modeling framework that captures the socio-economic and environmental effects of various policy initiatives and climate variability. This modeling integration includes a risk-based economic optimization model and a hydrologic water management simulation model that have been specified for the Middle Guadiana basin, a vulnerable drought-prone agro-ecological area with highly regulated river systems in southwest Spain. Namely, two key water policy interventions were investigated: the implementation of minimum environmental flows (supported by the European Water Framework Directive, EU WFD), and a reduction in the legal amount of water delivered for irrigation (planned measure included in the new Guadiana River Basin Management Plan, GRBMP, still under discussion). Results indicate that current patterns of excessive water use for irrigation in the basin may put environmental flow demands at risk, jeopardizing the WFD's goal of restoring the 'good ecological status' of water bodies by 2015. Conflicts between environmental and agricultural water uses will be stressed during prolonged dry episodes, and particularly in summer low-flow periods, when there is an important increase of crop irrigation water requirements. Securing minimum stream flows would entail a substantial reduction in irrigation water use for rice cultivation, which might affect the profitability and economic viability of small rice-growing farms located upstream in the river. The new GRBMP could contribute

  15. Momentum Transfer and Viscosity from Proton-Hydrogen Collisions Relevant to Shocks and Other Astrophysical Environments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schultz, David Robert; Krstic, Predrag S.; Lee, Teck G.; Raymond, J.C.

    2008-01-01

    The momentum transfer and viscosity cross sections for proton-hydrogen collisions are computed in the velocity range of ∼200-20,000 km s -1 relevant to a wide range of astrophysical environments such as SNR shocks, the solar wind, winds within young stellar objects or accretion disks, and the interstellar protons interacting with the heliosphere. A variety of theoretical approaches are used to arrive at a best estimate of these cross sections in this velocity range that smoothly connect with very accurate results previously computed for lower velocities. Contributions to the momentum transfer and viscosity cross sections from both elastic scattering and charge transfer are included

  16. Water and vapor transfer in vadose zone of Gobi desert and riparian in the hyper arid environment of Ejina, China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Du, C.; Yu, J.; Sun, F.; Liu, X.

    2015-12-01

    To reveal how water and vapor transfer in vadose zone affect evapotranspiration in Gobi desert and riparian in hyper arid region is important for understanding eco-hydrological process. Field studies and numerical simulations were imported to evaluate the water and vapor movement processes under non isothermal and lower water content conditions. The soil profiles (12 layers) in Gobi desert and riparian sites of Ejina were installed with sensors to monitor soil moisture and temperature for 1 year. The meteorological conditions and water table were measured by micro weather stations and mini-Divers respectively in the two sites. Soil properties, including particles composition, moisture, bulk density, water retention curve, and saturated hydraulic conductivity of two site soil profiles, was measured. The observations showed that soil temperatures for the two sites displayed large diurnal and seasonal fluctuations. Temperature gradients with depth resulted in a downward in summer and upward in winter and became driving force for thermal vapor movement. Soil moistures in Gobi desert site were very low and varied slowly with time. While the soil moistures in riparian site were complicated due to root distribution but water potentials remained uniform with time. The hydrus-1D was employed to simulate evapotranspiration processes. The simulation results showed the significant difference of evaporation rate in the Gobi desert and riparian sites.

  17. Effects of habitat composition on the use of resources by the red fox in a semi arid environment of North Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dell'Arte, Graziella L.; Leonardi, Giovanni

    2005-09-01

    The red fox Vulpes vulpes is considered an opportunistic predator able to avoid prey shortages by exploiting a wide range of available food resources. However, as predicted by the Resources Dispersion Hypothesis (RDH), the distribution of other key resources such as suitable areas for dens can affect fox populations. Furthermore, in insularity conditions, resources are spatially limited and their availability is greatly influenced by territory sizes and the feeding habits of predators. In this paper we report the spatial use and foraging habits of foxes in three habitats (grassland, cultivation and suburban) of a sub-arid island off north Africa in relation to habitat composition and food availability. We found that diet composition in a gross sense did not differ significantly among habitats, with insects comprising > 48% and fruits 25% of the total prey items. Grasslands offered temporary clumped food resources (e.g. birds) that induced foxes to increase their territory sizes and to enlarge their diet range during prey shortages. Inversely, in cultivated and suburban areas, the main prey (insects) were more evenly distributed, especially in olive groves which constitute the most extensive form of cultivation on the island. In large areas covered by olive trees, the high availability of Coleoptera spp. significantly reduced core areas used by foxes and also distances among dens. Palm groves were patchy on the island but contained high densities of Orthoptera spp. and date fruits which represent alternative food sources. Thus, these patches are attractive foraging places, but a modification of the perimeter of fox territories was necessary for their exploitation. Our study confirmed that in this arid environment, habitat composition per se affected a generalist predator less than the dispersion of its main prey. In addition, the patchy distribution of resources can assume a role in the spacing and feeding behaviours of foxes only in relation to clumped alternative

  18. A review of electrochemistry of relevance to environment-assisted cracking in light water reactors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Turnbull, A.; Psaila-Dombrowski, M.

    1992-01-01

    The electrochemistry of relevance to environment-assisted cracking in high temperature, low conductivity water is critically reviewed. The review covers corrosion potential and electrochemical polarisation measurements, thermodynamics, and also experimental measurements and mathematical modelling of the electrochemistry in cracks and crevices. There is a lack of critical data in relation to the electrode kinetics of relevant cathodic reduction reactions, namely H + , H 2 O, O 2 , H 2 O 2 and steady-state anodic reaction data are limited. Transient anodic current measurements, associated with initially film-free metal, have been made for a range of conditions but there is uncertainty regarding the role of fluid flow and transport processes on the current decay characteristics. A number of experimental measurements of potential and pH in crevices and cracks have been made but the experiments are difficult to carry out reliably and hence the range of data of relevance to practical conditions is very limited. Recent developments in mathematical modelling have significantly enhanced the qualitative understanding of the processes controlling the local electrochemistry in cracks and crevices but the reliability of the quantitative predictions is limited by the paucity of reliable input data. (Author)

  19. Decoding Metal Associations in an Arid Urban Environment with Active and Legacy Mining: the Case of Copiapó, Chile

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pasten, P.; Moya, P.; Coquery, M.; Bonilla, C. A.; Vega, A.; Carkovic, A.; Calcagni, M.

    2015-12-01

    The urban and periurban area of Copiapó in the arid Atacama desert has more than 30 abandoned mine tailings, one active copper smelter, and 150,000 inhabitants. Fast development of the mining industry during the 19th century and unplanned growth has led to public concern about the presence of metals in soils and street dust. Recent floods and mud currents in the Copiapó watershed have introduced new solid material in about 40% of the urban area. We conducted a geochemical screening before and after the disaster in March 2015. We found concentrations as high as 1000 mg/kg of copper and 180 mg/kg of arsenic in urban soils. Since effective control measures require connecting sites of metal enrichment with the possible sources, we have performed a statistical analysis of metal association and complemented it with other analyses like x-ray diffraction. Cluster analyses of elemental compositions suggest that mud and tailing have different origins from the rest of the matrices, while soils and street dust have a similar one. Some clusters have a mix of matrices that suggest anthropogenic enrichment of some areas of Copiapó. Our initial results indicate that a correlation between observed enrichment and the copper smelter can be hypothesized for Cu, Pb, and Zn. Further spatial, statistical, and chemical analyses are needed to further confirm such findings, complemented with a thorough analysis of the baseline values that could be considered representative of the area. Future work include Principal Component Analysis (PCA) and Positive matrix factorization (PMF) to test the link contaminant sources and metal occurrence, while scanning electron microscopy can be used to identify the presence of smelter-related particles. The information generated by this research will be a necessary input for defining urban planning strategies and land use guidelines, defining health risk assessment studies, and for future evaluation of intervention priorities. Acknowledgements: Proyecto

  20. Effect of multiple stress factors (thermal, nutritional and pregnancy type) on adaptive capability of native ewes under semi-arid environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dias E Silva, Tairon Pannunzio; Costa Torreão, Jacira Neves da; Torreão Marques, Carlo Aldrovandi; de Araújo, Marcos Jácome; Bezerra, Leílson Rocha; Kumar Dhanasekaran, Dinesh; Sejian, Veerasamy

    2016-07-01

    This study was conducted to evaluate the effect of multiple stress factors (thermal, nutritional and pregnancy type) on two different native track breeds of ewes as reflected by their adaptive capability under semi-arid environment. The multiple stressor experiment was conducted in twenty-four ewes (12 Santa Inês and 12 Morada Nova ewes). Both heat stress and pregnancy stress was common to all four groups. However, the animals were divided into further two groups within each breed on the basis of nutrition regimen. According the groupings were: Group 1 (Six Santa Ines ewes; heat stress; nutrition at 0.5% of BW; single pregnancy); Group 2 (Six Santa Ines ewes; heat stress; nutrition at 1.5% BW; twin pregnancy); groups Group 3 (Six Morada Nova ewes; heat stress; nutrition at 0.5% of BW; single pregnancy); Group 4 (Six Morada Nova ewes; heat stress; nutrition at 1.5% BW; twin pregnancy). All the animals in the experiment were pregnant. Heat stress was induced by exposing all animals to summer heat stress in outside environment while the nutritional regimen followed was at 0.5% and 1.5% level of body weight (BW) respectively in each breed. The experiment was conducted in a completely randomized design with two breeds, two nutritional treatments and two pregnancy types, 10 repetitions for physiological parameters and six for blood parameters, with repeated measures over time. Physiological parameters (respiratory rate, pulse rate and rectal temperature) were measured with the animals at rest in the morning and afternoon, 0600-0700 and 1300-1400h, respectively, every seven days. Blood samples were collected every 14d for determination of serum glucose, triglycerides, cholesterol, urea and creatinine. We found interaction effect between breed and pregnancy type on respiratory rate and rectal temperature with greater values in Santa Inês ewes than Morada Nova ewes. However, there was no significant fixed effect of pregnancy type and supplementation level on physiological

  1. [Irrigated perimeters as a geopolitical strategy for the development of the semi-arid region and its implications for health, labor and the environment].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pontes, Andrezza Graziella Veríssimo; Gadelha, Diego; Freitas, Bernadete Maria Coêlho; Rigotto, Raquel Maria; Ferreira, Marcelo José Monteiro

    2013-11-01

    An analysis was made of irrigated perimeters as a geopolitical strategy for expanding Brazilian agricultural frontiers and the "development" of the northeastern semi-arid region with respect to social determinants in health in rural communities. Research was conducted in the Chapada do Apodi in the states of Ceará and Rio Grande do Norte between 2007 and 2011. Various research techniques and tools were adopted, such as research-action, ethnographic studies, questionnaires and laboratory exams, water contamination analyses, social cartography and focal groups. In the context of agribusiness expansion, it was revealed that public policies of irrigation have had consequences for health, labor and the environment with the implementation of the Jaguaribe-Apodi Irrigated Perimeter in Ceará. The social and environmental conflict and resistance in the phase prior to the installation of the Santa Cruz do Apodi Irrigated Perimeter in Rio Grande do Norte was significant as it had consequences for the health-disease process on rural communities. It is important for the evaluation of public irrigation policies to consider the impacts of the perimeters on the lifestyle, labor, health and the environment of the affected territories.

  2. Dingxi Prefecture of Gansu Province's Development of Rainwater Collection and Water-Saving Irrigation to Combat the Arid Environment

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Zhang, Xiaojun; Dong, Suocheng; Wang, Haiying; Liu, Guihuan; Li, Shuang

    2005-01-01

    .... At the same time, in the long-time practice, Dingxi has taken the rainwater collection and water-saving irrigation as the link for improving eco-environment and increasing field's productivity...

  3. Tectonic uplift and denudation rate influence soil chemical weathering intensity in a semi-arid environment, southeast Spain: physico-chemical and mineralogical evidence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ameijeiras-Mariño, Yolanda; Opfergelt, Sophie; Schoonejans, Jérôme; Vanacker, Veerle; Sonnet, Philippe; Delmelle, Pierre

    2015-04-01

    Tectonic uplift is known to influence denudation rates. Denudation, including chemical weathering and physical erosion, affects soil production rates and weathering intensities. At topographic steady state, weathering can be transport- or weathering-limited. In the transport-limited regime, low denudation rates should lead to comparatively high weathering intensities, while in the weathering-limited case high denudation rates are associated with lower weathering intensities. Here, we test if this relationship applies to semi-arid environments where chemical weathering is generally slow. Three catchments (EST, FIL and CAB) were studied in the Internal Zone of the Betic Cordillera in southeast Spain, spanning a range of increasing uplift rates (10-170 mm/kyr) and increasing denudation rates (20-250 mm/kyr) from EST to CAB. In each catchment, two ridgetop soil profiles were sampled down to the bedrock. The three catchments have similar vegetation and climatic conditions, with precipitation of 250- 315 mm/yr and mean annual temperature of 15-17 °C. The mineralogy of the bedrock, as determined by XRD, is similar across the three catchments and is characterized by the presence of quartz, muscovite, clinochlore, biotite and plagioclase. This primary mineral assemblage is also found in the catchment soils, indicating that the soils studied derive from the same parent material. The soil clay-size fraction is dominated by kaolinite, vermiculite and illite. However, the proportions of the soil primary and secondary minerals vary between the catchment sites. The abundance of biotite decreases from CAB (14%) to EST (4%), whereas the quartz and clay contents show an opposite tendency (from 30 to 69% and 9.9 to 14.3%, respectively). Further, the abundance of vermiculite increases from CAB to EST. The results are interpreted in terms of increasing weathering intensity from CAB to EST by weathering of biotite into vermiculite and enrichment of soils on more weathering resistant

  4. Longevity and efficacy of bifenthrin treatment on desert-pattern US military camouflage netting against mosquitoes in a hot-arid environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Britch, Seth C; Linthicum, Kenneth J; Wynn, Willard W; Aldridge, Robert L; Walker, Todd W; Farooq, Muhammad; Dunford, James C; Smith, Vincent L; Robinson, Cathy A; Lothrop, Branka B; Snelling, Melissa; Gutierrez, Arturo; Wittie, Jeremy; White, Gregory

    2011-09-01

    The current Department of Defense pest management system does not provide adequate protection from arthropod disease vectors to personnel deployed in support of US military operations. We hypothesized that military camouflage netting, ubiquitous around living and working areas in current US military operations in Africa and the Middle East, treated with a residual pesticide such as bifenthrin may reduce the presence of biting insects and improve the military pest management system. In this study, we examined the longevity and efficacy of bifenthrin applied to camouflage netting material at the maximum label rate of 0.03 liter formulation (7.9% AI) per 92.9 m2 against field populations of mosquitoes in southern California in a hot-arid environment similar to regions of Iraq, Afghanistan, and the Horn of Africa. We showed that bifenthrin treatment of camouflage netting was effective at reducing mosquito populations, predominantly Psorophora columbiae and Aedes vexans, by an average of up to 46% for 56 days, and could cause as much as 40% mortality in Culex quinquefasciatus in laboratory bioassays for nearly 2 months postapplication. These population reductions could translate to commensurate reductions in risk of exposure to mosquito-borne pathogens, and could potentially be effective against sand flies and filth flies.

  5. Ventilatory accommodation of oxygen demand and respiratory water loss in kangaroos from mesic and arid environments, the eastern grey kangaroo (Macropus giganteus) and the red kangaroo (Macropus rufus).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dawson, T J; Munn, A J; Blaney, C E; Krockenberger, A; Maloney, S K

    2000-01-01

    We studied ventilation in kangaroos from mesic and arid environments, the eastern grey kangaroo (Macropus giganteus) and the red kangaroo (Macropus rufus), respectively, within the range of ambient temperatures (T(a)) from -5 degrees to 45 degrees C. At thermoneutral temperatures (Ta=25 degrees C), there were no differences between the species in respiratory frequency, tidal volume, total ventilation, or oxygen extraction. The ventilatory patterns of the kangaroos were markedly different from those predicted from the allometric equation derived for placentals. The kangaroos had low respiratory frequencies and higher tidal volumes, even when adjustment was made for their lower basal metabolism. At Ta>25 degrees C, ventilation was increased in the kangaroos to facilitate respiratory water loss, with percent oxygen extraction being markedly lowered. Ventilation was via the nares; the mouth was closed. Differences in ventilation between the two species occurred at higher temperatures, and at 45 degrees C were associated with differences in respiratory evaporative heat loss, with that of M. giganteus being higher. Panting in kangaroos occurred as a graded increase in respiratory frequency, during which tidal volume was lowered. When panting, the desert red kangaroo had larger tidal volumes and lower respiratory frequencies at equivalent T(a) than the eastern grey kangaroo, which generally inhabits mesic forests. The inference made from this pattern is that the red kangaroo has the potential to increase respiratory evaporative heat loss to a greater level.

  6. Are mangroves in arid environments isolated systems? Life-history and evidence of dietary contribution from inwelling in a mangrove-resident shrimp species

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Maslamani, I.; Walton, M. E. M.; Kennedy, H. A.; Al-Mohannadi, M.; Le Vay, L.

    2013-06-01

    The Arabian Gulf represents one of the more northerly extremes of mangrove distribution in the Indo-Pacific, and is populated only by Avicennia marina, due to its tolerance of high salinity and wide temperature extremes. Recent studies suggest that in the arid coastal environment of the western Arabian Gulf, export of carbon and nitrogen from mangroves to adjacent habitats may be limited, though it is not clear if this is due to low productivity or physical factors such as the lack of freshwater flow and the tidal regime. Although seagrass and macroalgal habitats are relatively much more dominant by area, with only small pockets of mangrove around the edges of embayments, it is not evident if inwelling from these habitats support mangrove fauna. Year-round sampling in mangroves at Al-Khor, Qatar, indicates that Palaemon khori, an endemic shrimp species, is strongly associated with mangroves throughout its post-settlement life cycle, from recruitment as small 9-10 mm juveniles through to mating and egg production. Rapid post-recruitment growth (k = 1.8, L∞ = 42 mm for females, k = 1.5, L∞ = 35 mm for male) means that most individuals reached adult size in the first few months after settlement, with reproduction occurring in the following spring. As might be expected from year-round residence in the mangrove, dual 13C and 15N isotope analysis indicated a strong contribution of mangroves to shrimp tissue growth (Mean and 95% confidence range, 37% and 27-48%), but with a weaker significant contribution from particulate organic matter (20% and 1-37%), mangrove epiphytes (16% and 2-33%) and seagrasses (9% and 0.2-18%). Other primary producers contribute the remaining 18% to shrimp nutrition but the 95% confidence ranges include zero, suggesting possibly non-significant roles in supporting the shrimp population. This dietary information supports the view that fauna resident within arid mangrove systems are mainly dependent on localised retention and cycling of

  7. Modern sedimentary facies, depositional environments, and major controlling processes on an arid siliciclastic coast, Al qahmah, SE Red Sea, Saudi Arabia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nabhan, Abdullah I.; Yang, Wan

    2018-04-01

    The facies and environments along the arid siliciclastic coast of Red Sea in Al Qahmah, Saudi Arabia are studied to establish a depositional model for interpretation of ancient rocks deposited in rift settings. Field and petrographic studies of 151 sediment samples in an area of 20 km2 define seven main facies types: beach, washover fan, tidal channel, dune, sabkha, delta, and wadi (seasonal stream). The wadi and delta facies are composed of poorly to moderately well-sorted, gravelly, medium-to-fine sands. Delta-front sands are redistributed by southward longshore currents to form a beach. Beach facies is composed of well-to-moderately sorted fine sands with minor gravels, which contain high concentrations of magnetite, ilmenite, garnet, pyroxene, amphibole, epidote, titanite, and apatite grains, indicating strong winnowing. Crabs and other burrowers destroy primary sedimentary structures and mix sediments in foreshore and backshore of the beaches. Wind and storm surge rework foreshore and backshore sediments to form washover fans. Sabkha facies occurs extensively in supratidal depressions behind beach, are flooded by rainstorms and spring tide, and capped by a 5-cm-thick crust composed of interlaminated halite, quartz, albite, minor gypsum and biotite, and rarely calcium carbonate. Halite occurs as thin sheets and gypsum as nodules with a chicken-wire structure. Clastic fraction in sabkha sediments ranges from coarse silt to coarse sand with moderate sorting, and is transported by currents and wind. Tidal inlets and tidal creeks assume abandoned wadis and are filled by muddy sand. Sand dunes and sand sheets are 1-7 m high and widely distributed due to variable wind directions. Fine-grained dune sands are moderately well sorted, whereas sheet sands are coarser and poorly sorted due to vegetation baffling. Most eolian sands are sourced from beach deposits. This suite of complex riverine, wave, tidal, wind, chemical, and biological processes form the facies mosaic

  8. Stability measures in arid ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nosshi, M. I.; Brunsell, N. A.; Koerner, S.

    2015-12-01

    Stability, the capacity of ecosystems to persist in the face of change, has proven its relevance as a fundamental component of ecological theory. Here, we would like to explore meaningful and quantifiable metrics to define stability, with a focus on highly variable arid and semi-arid savanna ecosystems. Recognizing the importance of a characteristic timescale to any definition of stability, our metrics will be focused scales from annual to multi-annual, capturing different aspects of stability. Our three measures of stability, in increasing order of temporal scale, are: (1) Ecosystem resistance, quantified as the degree to which the system maintains its mean state in response to a perturbation (drought), based on inter-annual variability in Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI). (2) An optimization approach, relevant to arid systems with pulse dynamics, that models vegetation structure and function based on a trade off between the ability to respond to resource availability and avoid stress. (3) Community resilience, measured as species turnover rate (β diversity). Understanding the nature of stability in structurally-diverse arid ecosystems, which are highly variable, yields theoretical insight which has practical implications.

  9. Evaluation of shale hosted low-level waste disposal sites in semi-arid environments: Final report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Roggenthen, W.M.; Rahn, P.H.; Arthur, R.C.; Miller, J.R.; Bangsund, W.J.; Eberlin, J.

    1985-09-01

    This report covers the findings of a multidisciplinary investigation intended to delineate critical factors and concerns associated with shale hosted, low-level radioactive waste disposal sites located in semiarid environments. The investigations focus primarily upon concerns regarding the hydrology, geochemistry, and meteorology of such an environment. The studies described within this report specifically do not constitute an evaluation of any one particular site nor even a particular class of sites. Rather, it is the intention of the report to present data and insights that would assist private concerns and governmental agencies in the efficient and prudent development of such disposal areas. This report assumes that the hypothetical waste site in question would be developed as a trench type operation similar to that used at Barnwell, South Carolina, with variations upon the techniques used at Beatty Flat, Nevada, and Hanford, Washington. The trench design (Figures 1 and 2) is assumed to be similar to that generic design described in ''Procedures and Technology for Shallow Land Burial, DOE/LLw-13Td, 1983) although it is also assumed that improvements and adaptations will be made upon this basic design to meet the individual needs of a particular site. During the preparation of this report it became apparent that new types of trench design are being studied. Discussions of these trench design proposals are not central to this report. The examples of trench design in Figures 1 and 2 are presented only to give an idea as to the general philosophy of construction of shallow burial facilities

  10. Alterations in flowering strategies and sexual allocation of Caragana stenophylla along a climatic aridity gradient

    OpenAIRE

    Lina Xie; Hongyu Guo; Chengcang Ma

    2016-01-01

    Plant can alter reproductive strategies for adaptation to different environments. However, alterations in flowering strategies and sexual allocation for the same species growing in different environments still remain unclear. We examined the sexual reproduction parameters of Caragana stenophylla across four climatic zones from semi-arid, arid, very arid, to intensively arid zones in the Inner Mongolia Steppe, China. Under the relatively favorable climatic conditions of semi-arid zone, C. sten...

  11. Detection of fluorotelomer alcohols in indoor environments and their relevance for human exposure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlummer, Martin; Gruber, Ludwig; Fiedler, Dominik; Kizlauskas, Markus; Müller, Josef

    2013-07-01

    Fluorotelomer alcohols (FTOH) are important precursors of perfluorinated carboxylic acids (PFCA). These neutral and volatile compounds are frequently found in indoor air and may contribute to the overall human exposure to per- and polyfluorinated alkyl substances (PFAS). In this study air samples of ten workplace environments and a car interior were analysed. In addition, extracts and emissions from selected outdoor textiles were analysed in order to establish their potential contribution to the indoor levels of the above-mentioned compounds. Concentrations of FTOHs measured in air ranged from 0.15 to 46.8, 0.25 to 286, and 0.11 to 57.5ng/m(3) for 6:2, 8:2 and 10:2 FTOHs, respectively. The highest concentrations in air were identified in shops selling outdoor clothing, indicating outdoor textiles to be a relevant source of FTOH in indoor workplace environments. Total amounts of FTOH in materials of outdoor textiles accounted for selling outdoor textiles contains the highest levels of FTOH. Exposure of humans to perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) through absorption of FTOH and subsequent degradation is discussed on the basis of indoor air levels. Calculation of indoor air-related exposure using the median of the measured air levels revealed that exposure is on the same order of magnitude as the recently reported dietary intakes for a background-exposed population. On the basis of the 95th percentile, indoor air exposure to PFOA was estimated to exceed dietary exposure. However, indoor air-related intakes of FTOH are far below the tolerable daily intake (TDI) of PFOA, indicating that there is no risk to health, even when assuming an unrealistic complete degradation of FTOH into PFOA. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Disentangling above- and below-ground facilitation drivers in arid environments: the role of soil microorganisms, soil properties and microhabitat.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lozano, Yudi M; Armas, Cristina; Hortal, Sara; Casanoves, Fernando; Pugnaire, Francisco I

    2017-12-01

    Nurse plants promote establishment of other plant species by buffering climate extremes and improving soil properties. Soil biota plays an important role, but an analysis to disentangle the effects of soil microorganisms, soil properties and microclimate on facilitation is lacking. In three microhabitats (gaps, small and large Retama shrubs), we placed six microcosms with sterilized soil, two per soil origin (i.e. from each microhabitat). One in every pair received an alive, and the other a sterile, inoculum from its own soil. Seeds of annual plants were sown into the microcosms. Germination, survival and biomass were monitored. Soil bacterial communities were characterized by pyrosequencing. Germination in living Retama inoculum was nearly double that of germination in sterile inoculum. Germination was greater under Retama canopies than in gaps. Biomass was up to three times higher in nurse than in gap soils. Soil microorganisms, soil properties and microclimate showed a range of positive to negative effects on understory plants depending on species identity and life stage. Nurse soil microorganisms promoted germination, but the effect was smaller than the positive effects of soil properties and microclimate under nurses. Nurse below-ground environment (soil properties and microorganisms) promoted plant growth and survival more than nurse microhabitat. © 2017 The Authors. New Phytologist © 2017 New Phytologist Trust.

  13. Effects of climate change on agriculture and environment in the semi-arid tropic - with Senegal as an example

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rasmussen, K.

    2001-01-01

    Some of the likely effects of the climate changes, projected by IPCC, on agriculture and environment in Senegal have been described. If rainfall does indeed increase, as suggested by the IPCC WG1 report, reversal of negative trends in vegetation productivity, associated with the droughts of the last decades on the 20 th Century, will be expected to occur. Present tendencies towards encroachment of crop cultivation on rangelands will be reinforced. These effects are likely to be economically beneficial to Senegal, yet their importance will be determined by the extent to which other factors will counteract them. With respect to crop and rangeland productivity nutrient-limitations will become increasingly important if not avoided by increased application of mineral fertilizers which is presently uneconomical. If rainfall does not increase significantly, the probable higher temperatures will tend to decrease crop and rangeland productivity, due to an increase in evapotranspirations rates. Also, the competition for water resources is likely to be intensified, especially the water resources of the Senegal River which are shared by four countries. The greater international focus on climate issues also affects Senegal by putting an economic value on carbon storage and avoidance of emissions of greenhouse gases. Current trends of expanding agriculture into rangelands and woodland areas imply a reduction in the storage of carbon in vegetation and soils. The use of fire as a natural resource management practice may have significant impacts on emissions, and may therefore be affected by emission policies. The challenge for Senegal will be to develop policies and preparedness in order to adapt to the changes that are likely to come. Presently, government policies are only to a very limited extent taking the projected change into consideration. (LN)

  14. Effect of walking stress on growth, physiological adaptability and endocrine responses in Malpura ewes in a semi-arid tropical environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sejian, Veerasamy; Maurya, Vijai P.; Naqvi, Syed M. K.

    2012-03-01

    Sheep in hot semi-arid environments are mostly reared using extensive systems. In addition to thermal stress and feed scarcity, the animals need to walk long distances for grazing in this ecological zone. A study was conducted to assess the effect of long-distance walking on adaptive capability in terms of physiological, biochemical and endocrine responses in Malpura ewes. Fourteen adult Malpura non-pregnant ewes weighing between 33 and 35 kg were used in the study. The ewes were randomly allocated into two groups of seven animals each: GI ( n = 7; Control), and GII ( n = 7; walking stress). The animals were stall-fed with a diet consisting of 70% roughage and 30% concentrate. Both GI and GII ewes had uniform access to feed and water. The walking stress group (GII) ewes were made to walk 14 km in two spans between 0900 and 1500 hours with 1 h 30 min for each span (7 km) of walking. The ewes subjected to walking stress (GII) were prevented from grazing by applying a face mask made of cotton thread. The study was conducted for a period of two estrous cycles (35 days) during the autumn season (October-November). Physiological responses were recorded twice daily at 0800 and 1400 hours at weekly intervals. Blood samples were collected from the jugular vein at weekly intervals to study the effects of walking stress on blood biochemical and endocrine parameters. The results indicate that walking stress had significant ( P ewes have the capability to adapt to long-distance walking, and that adrenal and thyroid gland hormones play a significant role in such adaptation.

  15. Use of Aquacrop Model to predict Maize Yields under Varying Rainfall and Temperature in a Semi-Arid Environment in Kenya

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wamari, O. J.; Sijali, V. I; Heng, N. K; Joseph Mutwiri Miriti, M. J; Esilaba, O A

    2012-01-01

    There has been increasing concern that drier and hotter seasons are becoming more frequent due to climate change especially in semi-arid environments causing adverse effects on agricultural production. Analysis of long-term (1980-2010) trends of rainfall in the first growing season (i.e. March and July) at Katumani, Kenya showed that about 55% of the seasons were below the long-term average, with an all time low occurring in the year 2000. Although the wettest years (1998 and 1985 ) had relatively higher percentages above the long-term average (143.9% and 138.4% ) compared to lower percentages ( 61.7% and 59.7%) of the driest years ( 2000 and 1987), the latter were relatively less in numbers (i.e. 45%). Mean seasonal temperatures however did not show high variation from the long term mean implying that rainfall was the main cause of yield variation in this area. The AquaCrop model (Ver. 3.1) evaluated using three years (i.e. 1999, 2000 and 2001) of experimental results at Katumani, gave reasonable estimates of above ground biomass and grain yield of Katumani composite maize variety. The model was then used to predict Katumani maize yields under 20% depletion of rainfall and 3°C temperature elevation scenarios. Biomass and grain yields simulated respectively ranged between 2.971 to 6.558 and 0.910 to 2.564 T Ha-1 with probabilities of obtaining 3-5 T Ha-1 biomass and 1-2 T Ha-1 grain yields each dropping from 98 to 25%. Adaptation measures are given as management recommendations in line with the changed climatic scenario. (author)

  16. Estimating Tritium Fluxes from the Shallow Unsaturated Zone to the Atmosphere in an Arid Environment Dominated by Creosote Bush (USGS-ADRS)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia, C. A.; Andraski, B. J.; Wheatcraft, S. W.; Johnson, M. J.; Michel, R. L.; Stonestrom, D. A.

    2006-12-01

    Understanding the transport and fate of tritium is essential when evaluating options for low-level radioactive waste (LLRW) isolation. The magnitude and spatio-temporal variability of tritium transport from the shallow unsaturated zone to the atmosphere are being investigated adjacent to a LLRW facility at the U.S. Geological Survey's Amargosa Desert Research Site (ADRS) in Southern Nevada. Site and community-scale tritium fluxes from the subsurface to the atmosphere were quantified using a simple gas-phase diffusive loading approach combining evaporation and transpiration fluxes with mass fractions of gas-phase tritium concentrations. A Priestly-Taylor model, calibrated with quarterly bare-soil evaporation measurements, was used to estimate continuous bare-soil evaporation from measured continuous eddy-covariance evapotransporation. Continuous transpiration was computed as the difference between measured evapotranspiration and estimated bare-soil evaporation. Tritium concentrations in plant water and soil-water vapor were measured along two transects perpendicular to the LLRW using azeotropic distillation of creosote bush (Larrea tridentata) foliage and soil vapor extraction from 0.5 and 1.5 m depths below land surface. A preliminary daily tritium flux estimate at a single plant site was 1.66 × 10-11 gm-2. Spatio- temporal variability over a 75-ha area and 2-yr period will be quantified using a combination of tritium concentration maps and continuous evaporation and transpiration flux estimates. Quantifying tritium fluxes from the shallow unsaturated zone to the atmosphere on a site and community-scale will improve knowledge and understanding of vertical contaminant transport in arid environments.

  17. The application of Caesium-137 and Plutonium-239+240 measurements to investigate floodplain deposition in a semi-arid, low-fallout environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amos, K. J.; Croke, J. C.; Timmers, H.; Owens, P. N.

    2009-04-01

    Floodplains comprise geomorphologically important sources and sinks for sediments and associated pollutants, yet the sedimentology of large dryland floodplains is not well understood. Processes occurring on such floodplains are often difficult to observe, and techniques used to investigate smaller perennial floodplains are often not practical in these environments. This study assesses the utility of Cs-137 inventory and depth-profile techniques for determining relative amounts of floodplain sedimentation in the Fitzroy River, north-eastern Australia; a 143 000 km2 semi-arid river system. Caesium-137 inventories were calculated for floodplain and reference location bulk soil cores collected from four sites. Depth profiles of Cs-137 concentration from each floodplain site and a reference location were recorded. The areal density of Cs-137 at reference locations ranged from 13-978 Bq m-2 (0-1367 Bq m-2 at the 95% confidence interval), and the mean value ± 2(standard error of the mean) was 436±264 Bq m-2, similar to published data from other southern hemisphere locations. Floodplain inventories ranged from 68-1142 Bq m-2 (0-1692 Bq m-2 at the 95% confidence interval), essentially falling within the range of reference inventory values, thus preventing calculation of erosion or deposition. Depth-profiles of Cs-137 concentration indicate erosion at one site and over 66 cm of deposition at another since 1954. Analysis of 239+240Pu concentrations in a depositional core substantiated the interpretation made from Cs-137 data, and depict a more tightly constrained peak in concentration. Average annual deposition rates range from 0-15 mm. The similarity between floodplain and reference bulk inventories does not necessarily indicate a lack of erosion or deposition, due to low Cs-137 fallout in the region and associated high measurement uncertainties, and a likely influence of gully and bank eroded sediments with no or limited adsorbed Cs-137. In this low-fallout environment

  18. Research-Based Learning for Undergraduate Students in Soil and Water Sciences: A Case Study of Hydropedology in an Arid-Zone Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Maktoumi, Ali; Al-Ismaily, Said; Kacimov, Anvar

    2016-01-01

    This article reports the efficacy of a research-based learning (RBL) exercise on hydropedology of arid zones, with guided and open research projects (OPR) carried out by teams of undergraduate students in Oman. A range of activities and assessments was used to support student learning during the three-month course. Assessment included monitoring…

  19. Evolution of chemical and isotopic composition of inorganic carbon in a complex semi-arid zone environment: Consequences for groundwater dating using radiocarbon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meredith, K. T.; Han, L. F.; Hollins, S. E.; Cendón, D. I.; Jacobsen, G. E.; Baker, A.

    2016-09-01

    Estimating groundwater age is important for any groundwater resource assessment and radiocarbon (14C) dating of dissolved inorganic carbon (DIC) can provide this information. In semi-arid zone (i.e. water-limited environments), there are a multitude of reasons why 14C dating of groundwater and traditional correction models may not be directly transferable. Some include; (1) the complex hydrological responses of these systems that lead to a mixture of different ages in the aquifer(s), (2) the varied sources, origins and ages of organic matter in the unsaturated zone and (3) high evaporation rates. These all influence the evolution of DIC and are not easily accounted for in traditional correction models. In this study, we determined carbon isotope data for; DIC in water, carbonate minerals in the sediments, sediment organic matter, soil gas CO2 from the unsaturated zone, and vegetation samples. The samples were collected after an extended drought, and again after a flood event, to capture the evolution of DIC after varying hydrological regimes. A graphical method (Han et al., 2012) was applied for interpretation of the carbon geochemical and isotopic data. Simple forward mass-balance modelling was carried out on key geochemical processes involving carbon and agreed well with observed data. High values of DIC and δ13CDIC, and low 14CDIC could not be explained by a simple carbonate mineral-CO2 gas dissolution process. Instead it is suggested that during extended drought, water-sediment interaction leads to ion exchange processes within the top ∼10-20 m of the aquifer which promotes greater calcite dissolution in saline groundwater. This process was found to contribute more than half of the DIC, which is from a mostly 'dead' carbon source. DIC is also influenced by carbon exchange between DIC in water and carbonate minerals found in the top 2 m of the unsaturated zone. This process occurs because of repeated dissolution/precipitation of carbonate that is dependent on

  20. Ground Monitoring Neotropical Dry Forests: A Sensor Network for Forest and Microclimate Dynamics in Semi-Arid Environments (Enviro-Net°)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rankine, C. J.; Sánchez-Azofeifa, G.

    2011-12-01

    In the face of unprecedented global change driven by anthropogenic pressure on natural systems it has become imperative to monitor and better understand potential shifts in ecosystem functioning and services from local to global scales. The utilization of automated sensors technologies offers numerous advantages over traditional on-site ecosystem surveying techniques and, as a result, sensor networks are becoming a powerful tool in environmental monitoring programs. Tropical forests, renowned for their biodiversity, are important regulators of land-atmosphere fluxes yet the seasonally dry tropical forests, which account for 40% of forested ecosystems in the American tropics, have been severely degraded over the past several decades and not much is known of their capacity to recover. With less than 1% of these forests protected, our ability to monitor the dynamics and quantify changes in the remaining primary and recovering secondary tropical dry forests is vital to understanding mechanisms of ecosystem stress responses and climate feedback with respect to annual productivity and desertification processes in the tropics. The remote sensing component of the Tropi-Dry: Human and Biophysical Dimensions of Tropical Dry Forests in the Americas research network supports a network of long-term tropical ecosystem monitoring platforms which focus on the dynamics of seasonally dry tropical forests in the Americas. With over 25 sensor station deployments operating across a latitudinal gradient in Mexico, Costa Rica, Brazil, and Argentina continuously collecting hyper-temporal sensory input based on standardized deployment parameters, this monitoring system is unique among tropical environments. Technologies used in the network include optical canopy phenology towers, understory wireless sensing networks, above and below ground microclimate stations, and digital cameras. Sensory data streams are uploaded to a cyber-infrastructure initiative, denominated Enviro-Net°, for data

  1. The Environment for Professional Interaction and Relevant Practical Experience in AACSB-Accredited Accounting Programs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arlinghaus, Barry P.

    2002-01-01

    Responses from 276 of 1,128 faculty at Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business-accredited schools indicated that 231 were certified; only 96 served in professional associations; large numbers received financial support for professional activities, but only small numbers felt involvement or relevant experience (which are required for…

  2. Factors Affecting Adoption of Agroforestry Farming System as a Mean for Sustainable Agricultural Development and Environment Conservation in Arid Areas of Northern Kordofan State, Sudan

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Muneer, Siddig El Tayeb

    2008-01-01

    Arid and semi-arid areas represent about 60 percent of Sudan total area. One of the main environmental problems in the arid and semi-arid areas is diffraction's which reduces the natural potential of the already fragile ecosystems and renders rural people vulnerable to food shortages, the vagaries of weather and natural disasters. Deforestation which is considered one of the most critical environmental problems facing the world is one of the main causes of diffraction's. Between the years 1990 and 2005 Sudan lost about 8.8 millions hectares of forests, which represents 11%, of its forests mainly because of subsistence activities such as overgrazing, trees cutting and expansion of traditional agriculture. One of the areas that are very much affected by diffraction's is Northern Kordofan State. To rescue the situation the government of Sudan, with assistance from the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and some donors, implemented a project that aimed primarily at restocking Acacia Senegal trees in Northern Kordofan State. This study is intended to explore the factors that caused differential rate of farmers' adoption rate of the Acacia Senegal based agroforestry farming system. The study data was collected from a clustered random sample of 300 farmers, through face to face interviews using a questionnaire that was pre-tested and validated. Frequency distribution and multiple regression analysis were used to analyze the data. It has been found that farmers' adoption of agroforestry farming system in Northern Kordofan state was significantly affected by the farmers' level of formal education, contact with extension agents, level of environmental awareness, cosmopoliteness, total area of owned land and extent of social participation. (author)

  3. Diversity of inulinase-producing fungi associated with two Asteraceous plants, Pulicaria crispa (Forssk.) and Pluchea dioscoridis (L.) growing in an extreme arid environment

    OpenAIRE

    Khalil, Doaa M. A.; Massoud, Mohamed S.; Abdelrahman, Mostafa; El-Zayat, Soad A.; El-Sayed, Magdi A.

    2018-01-01

    Inulinases are potentially valuable enzymes catalyze the hydrolysis of plant’s inulin into high fructose syrups as sweetening ingredients for food industry and ethanol production. The high demands for inulinase enzymes have promoted interest in microbial inulinases as the most suitable approach for biosynthesis of fructose syrups from inulin. Arid land ecosystem represents a valuable bioresource for soil microbial diversity with unique biochemical and physiological properties. In the present ...

  4. Uraninite alteration in an oxidizing environment and its relevance to the disposal of spent nuclear fuel

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Finch, R.; Ewing, R.

    1990-12-01

    Uraninite is a natural analogue for spent nuclear fuel because of similarities in structure and chemistry. Effective assessment of the long-term behavior of spent fuel in a geologic repository requires a knowledge of the corrosion products produced in that environment. Several important natural analogue sites are reviewed, illustrating a wide variety of environments from oxidizing to reducing, including, among others: Cigar Lake, Canada, a uraninite-bearing ore body at depth within a strictly reducing environment; the ore body has 'seen' extensive groundwater interaction with virtually no significant oxidation or mobilization of U apperent. Koongara, Australia is a highly altered uraninite-bearing ore body partially exposed to meteoric water; alteration at depth has resulted from interaction with groundwater having a somewhat reduced Eh compared to the surface. Uraninite, Pb-uranyl oxide hydrates and uranyl silicates control U solubility at depth; uranyl phosphates and U adsorption onto clays and FeMn-oxides control U solubility near the surface. Pocos de Caldas, Brazil displays a redox from moving through uraninite-bearing rocks near the surface and shows local remobilization of U. Oklo, Gabon, a uraninite- and coffinite-bearing ore body, locally affected by intense hydrothermal alteration during fission reactions, demonstrates restricted radionuclide and fission product transport within a reducing environment. A current study being conducted by the authors at Shinkolbwe, Zaire, a uraninite-bearing ore body exposed to highly oxidizing conditions at the surface, provides over 50 species of uranyl phases for detailed study, and illustrates a complex uranyl phase paragenesis over several million years, from earliest-formed uranyl oxide hydrates and uranyl silicates to later-formed uranyl phosphate. (au) (268 refs.)

  5. Modelling of an industrial environment, part 2.: External dose calculation with relevant countermeasures

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Eged, K.; Kis, Z.; Alvarez-Farizo, B.; Gil, J.; Voigt, G.

    2002-01-01

    The calculation of the collective dose and averted collective dose after applying countermeasures in an industrial environment has been divided in two parts. In the first part (Kis et al. 2002) separate Monte Carlo simulations of photon transport resulted in the air kermas per photon per unit area due to the industrial surfaces contaminated by 1 37C s at specific points using the so-called local approach. In the local approach the air kerma rates due to specific intervention elements at the evaluation locations in the whole environment are determined (Gutierrez et al. 2000). In this way the collective and averted collective dose due to the radiation from a particular intervention element (e.g. the roof of a building) can be obtained. It can, therefore, provide a ranking of the specific intervention elements based on their contribution to collective dose as well. The deposition pattern and the long-term behaviour of deposited radionuclides vary widely in natural circumstances; therefore the number of the photons emitted from the various surfaces per unit area and time can differ significantly. This means the results of the Monte Carlo simulations have to be weighted according to the number of emitted photons so that the actual radiation field can be set up. For this purpose, a dose calculation code has been developed in the framework of the TEMAS project (Gutierrez et al. 2000) which allows to calculate collective doses for different environments. This code has been applied in the present work

  6. Environment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Valentini, Chiara

    2017-01-01

    The term environment refers to the internal and external context in which organizations operate. For some scholars, environment is defined as an arrangement of political, economic, social and cultural factors existing in a given context that have an impact on organizational processes and structures....... For others, environment is a generic term describing a large variety of stakeholders and how these interact and act upon organizations. Organizations and their environment are mutually interdependent and organizational communications are highly affected by the environment. This entry examines the origin...... and development of organization-environment interdependence, the nature of the concept of environment and its relevance for communication scholarships and activities....

  7. Pharmaceutical products as emerging contaminant in water: relevance for developing nations and identification of critical compounds for Indian environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chinnaiyan, Prakash; Thampi, Santosh G; Kumar, Mathava; Mini, K M

    2018-04-17

    Pharmaceuticals and personal care products (PPCPs) are contaminants of emerging concern and have been detected worldwide in water bodies in trace concentrations. Most of these emerging contaminants are not regulated in water quality standards except a few in the developed countries. In the case of developing countries, research in this direction is at a nascent stage. For the effective management of Pharmaceutical contaminants (PC) in developing countries, the relevance of PCs as an emerging contaminant has to be analyzed followed by regular monitoring of the environment. Considering the resource constraints, this could be accomplished by identifying the priority compounds which is again region specific and dependent on consumption behavior and pattern. In this work, relevance of pharmaceutical compound as emerging contaminant in water for a developing country like India is examined by considering the data pertaining to pharmaceutical consumption data. To identify the critical Pharmaceutical Contaminants to be monitored in the Indian environment, priority compounds from selected prioritization methods were screened with the compounds listed in National List of Essential Medicine (NLEM), India. Further, information on the number of publications on the compound as an emerging contaminant, data on monitoring studies in India and the number of brands marketing the compound in India were also analyzed. It is found that out of 195 compounds from different prioritization techniques, only 77 compounds were found relevant to India based on NLEM sorting.

  8. Hydrologic and geochemical controls on the transport of radionuclides in natural undisturbed arid environments as determined by accelerator mass spectrometry measurements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nimz, G; Caffee, M W; McAninch, J

    2000-01-01

    methods we have developed; (5 ) Most of the bomb-pulse 99 Tc observed in the soil profile at the EMSP research site was confined to the upper 50 cm; however, there is some indication that a fraction of the 99 Tc could move to the same extent as bomb-pulse 36 Cl; and (6) The observed AMS sensitivity for 90 Sr was 90 Sr/Sr=10 -12 , corresponding to about 20-200 mBq per sample, similar to the sensitivity of traditional decay counting; further work should improve the sensitivity by at least a factor of 10, but even now the AMS ability for sensitive, high throughput, fast turnaround, robust measurements using simple chemistry is an improvement over decay counting methods. Although our results regarding the migration of these radionuclides in arid soils increase the scientific understand of contaminant migration in that environment, we believe the primary benefit of our EMSP research is the development of AMS analytical techniques for low-level radionuclide measurement. The advantages of this include: (1) the ability to conduct migration studies in locations most like those of concern to public health, e.g., a ''far-field'' environment; (2) sites of multiple contamination, e.g., by VOC's, can be avoided; (3) it becomes unnecessary to collect research samples that are themselves radioactive waste and are therefore difficult to handle and dispose of in the laboratory; and (4) since the nuclides are globally distributed, migration research can be conducted in any chosen environment. Our research is therefore designed to make the study of radionuclide migration simpler to do, simpler to interpret, and easier to apply to specific DOE sites. This will lead to a better understanding of the migration potential and ultimate fate of radionuclides, creating much less uncertainty regarding which remediative strategies should be employed. For any project, this will reduce its cost, shorten its schedule, and provide greater confidence in its final result, both for the DOE and for the general

  9. Time-Domain Simulations of Transient Species in Experimentally Relevant Environments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ueltschi, Tyler W.; Fischer, Sean A.; Apra, Edoardo; Tarnovsky, Alexander N.; Govind, Niranjan; El-Khoury, Patrick Z.; Hess, Wayne P.

    2016-02-04

    Simulating the spectroscopic properties of short-lived thermal and photochemical reaction intermediates and products is a challenging task, as these species often feature atypical molecular and electronic structures. The complex environments in which such species typically reside in practice add further complexity to the problem. Herein, we tackle this problem in silico using ab initio molecular dynamics (AIMD) simulations, employing iso-CHBr3, namely H(Br)C-Br-Br, as a prototypical system. This species was chosen because it features both a non-conventional C-Br-Br bonding pattern, as well as a strong dependence of its spectral features on the local environment in which it resides, as illustrated in recent experimental reports. The spectroscopic properties of iso-CHBr3 were measured by several groups that captured this transient intermediate in the photochemistry of CHBr3 in the gas phase, in rare gas matrices at 5K, and in solution under ambient laboratory conditions. We simulate the UV-Vis and IR spectra of iso-CHBr3 in all three media, including a Ne cluster (64 atoms) and a methylcyclohexane cage (14 solvent molecules) representative of the matrix isolated and solvated species. We exclusively perform fully quantum mechanical static and dynamic simulations. By comparing our condensed phase simulations to their experimental analogues, we stress the importance of (i) conformational sampling, even at cryogenic temperatures, and (ii) using a fully quantum mechanical description of both solute and bath to properly account for the experimental observables.

  10. Genes, environment and sport performance: why the nature-nurture dualism is no longer relevant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davids, Keith; Baker, Joseph

    2007-01-01

    The historical debate on the relative influences of genes (i.e. nature) and environment (i.e. nurture) on human behaviour has been characterised by extreme positions leading to reductionist and polemic conclusions. Our analysis of research on sport and exercise behaviours shows that currently there is little support for either biologically or environmentally deterministic perspectives on elite athletic performance. In sports medicine, recent molecular biological advances in genomic studies have been over-interpreted, leading to a questionable 'single-gene-as-magic-bullet' philosophy adopted by some practitioners. Similarly, although extensive involvement in training and practice is needed at elite levels, it has become apparent that the acquisition of expertise is not merely about amassing a requisite number of practice hours. Although an interactionist perspective has been mooted over the years, a powerful explanatory framework has been lacking. In this article, we propose how the complementary nature of degenerate neurobiological systems might provide the theoretical basis for explaining the interactive influence of genetic and environmental constraints on elite athletic performance. We argue that, due to inherent human degeneracy, there are many different trajectories to achieving elite athletic performance. While the greatest training responses may be theoretically associated with the most favourable genotypes being exposed to highly specialised training environments, this is a rare and complex outcome. The concept of degeneracy provides us with a basis for understanding why each of the major interacting constraints might act in a compensatory manner on the acquisition of elite athletic performance.

  11. Experimental Characterization of a Composite Morphing Radiator Prototype in a Relevant Thermal Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertagne, Christopher L.; Chong, Jorge B.; Whitcomb, John D.; Hartl, Darren J.; Erickson, Lisa R.

    2017-01-01

    For future long duration space missions, crewed vehicles will require advanced thermal control systems to maintain a desired internal environment temperature in spite of a large range of internal and external heat loads. Current radiators are only able to achieve turndown ratios (i.e. the ratio between the radiator's maximum and minimum heat rejection rates) of approximately 3:1. Upcoming missions will require radiators capable of 12:1 turndown ratios. A radiator with the ability to alter shape could significantly increase turndown capacity. Shape memory alloys (SMAs) offer promising qualities for this endeavor, namely their temperature-dependent phase change and capacity for work. In 2015, the first ever morphing radiator prototype was constructed in which SMA actuators passively altered the radiator shape in response to a thermal load. This work describes a follow-on endeavor to demonstrate a similar concept using highly thermally conductive composite materials. Numerous versions of this new concept were tested in a thermal vacuum environment and successfully demonstrated morphing behavior and variable heat rejection, achieving a turndown ratio of 4.84:1. A summary of these thermal experiments and their results are provided herein.

  12. The Relevance of People’s Attitudes Towards Freedom of Expression in a Changing Media Environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Teresa K. NAAB

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The article outlines arguments for the relevance of people’s attitudes towards freedom of expression: It is a fundamental principle of democracy that if a virtue does not receive support from the population, it will not be anchored in law and its foundation is endangered in the medium term. People’s support for free speech is becoming even more influential because authoritative control of internet communication is faced with difficulties. Furthermore, with the development of social media users gain new opportunities to publicly express their opinions attaching even more importance to normative self-regulation. As a matter of fact, these increased opportunities of self-regulation may either enhance or decrease the exercise of expression rights. Thus, citizen’s endorsement of free expression is a valuable indicator of the status of freedom of expression in a country. To approach to the subject empirically, the paper systematizes findings on people’s attitudes towards free speech: Most people believe in freedom of expression in the abstract. Willingness to apply the right to opposing groups, however, is lower. Perceived threats, confidence in democratic principles, mode of communication, and personality variables influence tolerance of expressions. Finally, a research agenda is put forward to examine appreciation of free expression, its antecedence, and implications.

  13. Active-Site Environment of Copper-Bound Human Amylin Relevant to Type 2 Diabetes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seal, Manas; Dey, Somdatta Ghosh

    2018-01-02

    Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2Dm) is characterized by reduced β cell mass and amyloid deposits of human islet amyloid polypeptide (hIAPP) or amylin, a 37 amino acid containing peptide around pancreatic β cells. The interaction of copper (Cu) with amylin and its mutants has been studied in detail using absorption, circular dichroism, electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy, and cyclic voltammetry. Cu binds amylin in a 1:1 ratio, and the binding domain lies within the first 19 amino acid residues of the peptide. Depending on the pH of the medium, Cu-amylin shows the formation of five pH-dependent components (component IV at pH 4.0, component III at pH 5.0, component II at pH 6.0, component I at pH 8.0, and another higher pH component above pH 9.0). The terminal amine, His18, and amidates are established as key residues in the peptide that coordinate the Cu center. The physiologically relevant components I and II can generate H 2 O 2 , which can possibly account for the enhanced toxicity of amylin in the presence of Cu, causing damage of the β cells of the pancreas via oxidative stress.

  14. Performance evaluation of constructed wetlands: A review of arid ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Aiming at environmental pollution control through the use of constructed wetlands systems (CWs) in arid and semi arid climatic region, a detailed review of CWs was undertaken. Given the practical application and simplicity of the technology, principles for building phytotechnology-ecohydrology environment used for ...

  15. Flood frequency analysis and generation of flood hazard indicator maps in a semi-arid environment, case of Ourika watershed (western High Atlas, Morocco)

    Science.gov (United States)

    El Alaoui El Fels, Abdelhafid; Alaa, Noureddine; Bachnou, Ali; Rachidi, Said

    2018-05-01

    The development of the statistical models and flood risk modeling approaches have seen remarkable improvements in their productivities. Their application in arid and semi-arid regions, particularly in developing countries, can be extremely useful for better assessment and planning of flood risk in order to reduce the catastrophic impacts of this phenomenon. This study focuses on the Setti Fadma region (Ourika basin, Morocco) which is potentially threatened by floods and is subject to climatic and anthropogenic forcing. The study is based on two main axes: (i) the extreme flow frequency analysis, using 12 probability laws adjusted by Maximum Likelihood method and (ii) the generation of the flood risk indicator maps are based on the solution proposed by the Nays2DFlood solver of the Hydrodynamic model of two-dimensional Saint-Venant equations. The study is used as a spatial high-resolution digital model (Lidar) in order to get the nearest hydrological simulation of the reality. The results showed that the GEV is the most appropriate law of the extreme flows estimation for different return periods. Taking into consideration the mapping of 100-year flood area, the study revealed that the fluvial overflows extent towards the banks of Ourika and consequently, affects some living areas, cultivated fields and the roads that connects the valley to the city of Marrakech. The aim of this study is to propose new technics of the flood risk management allowing a better planning of the flooded areas.

  16. Relative Efficacy of On-Farm Weeds as Soil-Amendement for Managing Dry Root Rot of Clusterbean in an Arid Environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Mawar

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available The effectiveness of certain on-farm weeds as soil amendments was ascertained against Macrophomina phaseolina, a soil-borne pathogen causing dry root rot of crops grown under rainfed conditions in arid regions. Population changes in M. phaseolina were determined in soils amended separately with residues (1%, w:w of Aerva persica, Celosia argentea, Corchorus depressus, Euphorbia hirta, Heliotropium subulatum and Polycarpaea corymbosa, for a period of 90 days. Significant reductions by 90.4–100% in the population of M. phaseolina were achieved with all the weed residues except P. corymbosa. Celosia and Euphorbia residues completely eradicated viable propagules of M. phaseolina. A strong increase (44–61% in the population of antagonistic actinomycetes was also found in soil amended with Corchorus and Euphorbia. In field tests, soil amended (50 g m2 with Euphorbia, Aerva and Celosia residues significantly reduced dry root rot incidence on clusterbean and also reduced M. phaseolina propagules in the soil. However, dry root rot incidence in Polycarpaea-amended soil (5.8–24.6% was not significantly different from that in non-amended soil (4.3–25.3% in both years of the experiment. P. corymbosa also increased the number of propagules of M. phaseolina in the soil. The results demonstrate that dry root rot of rainfed-cultivated annual crops in arid land can be managed with certain weeds as a soil amendment.

  17. Mapping potential zones for groundwater recharge and its evaluation in arid environments using a GIS approach: Case study of North Gafsa Basin (Central Tunisia)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mokadem, Naziha; Boughariou, Emna; Mudarra, Matías; Ben Brahim, Fatma; Andreo, Bartolome; Hamed, Younes; Bouri, Salem

    2018-05-01

    With the progressive evolution of industrial sector, agricultural, urbanization, population and drinking water supply, the water demand continuously increases which necessitates the planning of groundwater recharge particularly in arid and semi-arid regions. This paper gives a comprehensive review of various recharges studies in the North Gafsa basin (South Tunisia). This latter is characterized by a natural groundwater recharge that is deeply affected by the lack of precipitations. The aim of this study is to determine the recharge potential zones and to quantify (or estimate) the rainfall recharge of the shallow aquifers. The mapping of the potential recharge zones was established in North Gafsa basin, using geological and hydrological parameters such as slope, lithology, topography and stream network. Indeed, GIS provide tools to reclassify these input layers to produce the final map of groundwater potential zones of the study area. The final output map reveals two distinct zones representing moderate and low groundwater potential recharge. Recharge estimations were based on the four methods: (1) Chloride Method, (2) ERAS Method, (3) DGRE coefficient and (4) Fersi equations. Therefore, the overall results of the different methods demonstrate that the use of the DGRE method applying on the potential zones is more validated.

  18. Near-field environment research at PNL relevant to brine migration phenomena

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pederson, L.R.; Gray, W.J.; Hodges, F.N.

    1987-01-01

    Heat and radiation resulting from emplacement of a high level nuclear waste package in a repository in salt will cause physical and chemical changes in the host rock and any brines present. These changes may alter the performance of waste package materials. Gamma radiolysis decomposes water into hydrogen and oxygen, hydrogen peroxide, and various other free radical and ionic species. Gamma ray irradiation of rock salt decomposes that salt to sodium metal colloids and neutral chlorine (unknown form), changing both its physical and chemical properties. Sodium metal will react, if contacted by water, to form sodium hydroxide plus hydrogen gas, while chlorine will react to form hydrochloric plus hypochlorous acids. If irradiated salts are completely dissolved, little impact on the chemical environment is expected because the acids and bases formed will neutralize each other. Heat from the waste package can alter the chemistry of the host rock. Changes in temperature can also alter the chemistry of brines by precipitation of phases with retrograde solubility, addition of more soluble salt components to the brine, and by reaction with clays and other impurities in the salt. Some of these reactions could be accompanied by significant shifts in the pH. In experiments to date, no important changes in chemistry have been observed when typical Permian Basin intrusion or inclusion brines were heated up to 150 0 C with no excess site-specific salt present. When excess salt was included, acidic shifts were noted, increasing with brine-salt interaction time and temperature

  19. Degradation of TBC Systems in Environments Relevant to Advanced Gas Turbines for IGCC Systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gleeson, Brian [Univ. of Pittsburgh, PA (United States)

    2014-09-30

    Air plasma sprayed (APS) thermal barrier coatings (TBCs) are used to provide thermal insulation for the hottest components in gas turbines. Zirconia stabilized with 7wt% yttria (7YSZ) is the most common ceramic top coat used for turbine blades. The 7YSZ coating can be degraded from the buildup of fly-ash deposits created in the power-generation process. Fly ash from an integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC) system can result from coal-based syngas. TBCs are also exposed to harsh gas environments containing CO2, SO2, and steam. Degradation from the combined effects of fly ash and harsh gas atmospheres has the potential to severely limit TBC lifetimes. The main objective of this study was to use lab-scale testing to systematically elucidate the interplay between prototypical deposit chemistries (i.e., ash and its constituents, K2SO4, and FeS) and environmental oxidants (i.e., O2, H2O and CO2) on the degradation behavior of advanced TBC systems. Several mechanisms of early TBC failure were identified, as were the specific fly-ash constituents responsible for degradation. The reactivity of MCrAlY bondcoats used in TBC systems was also investigated. The specific roles of oxide and sulfate components were assessed, together with the complex interplay between gas composition, deposit chemistry and alloy reactivity. Bondcoat composition design strategies to mitigate corrosion were established, particularly with regard to controlling phase constitution and the amount of reactive elements the bondcoat contains in order to achieve optimal corrosion resistance.

  20. Degradation of TBC Systems in Environments Relevant to Advanced Gas Turbines for IGCC Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bohna, Nathaniel Allan

    Plasma sprayed (PS) thermal barrier coatings (TBCs) are used to provide thermal insulation for the hottest components in gas turbines. Zirconia stabilized with 7wt% yttria (7YSZ) is the most common ceramic top coat used for turbine blades. The 7YSZ coating can be degraded by the buildup of fly-ash deposits which can arise from the fuel source (coal/biomass) used in the combustion process in gas turbines. Fly-ash from the integrated gasification combined cycle (IGCC) process can result from coal-based syngas and also from ambient air which passes through the system. TBCs are also exposed to harsh gas environments containing CO2, SO2, and steam. As presented in this thesis, degradation from the combined effects of fly-ash and harsh gas atmosphere can severely limit TBC lifetimes. It is well established that degradation at very high temperatures (≥1250°C) from deposits consisting of the oxides CaO-MgO-Al2O3-SiO 2 results from extensive liquid silicate infiltration into the porous top coat of the YSZ. This infiltration causes early failure resulting from chemical and/or mechanical damage to the ceramic layer. Damage resulting from liquid infiltration, however, is not typically considered at relatively lower temperatures around 1100°C because liquid silicates would not be expected to form from the oxides in the deposit. A key focus of this study is to assess the mode and extent of TBC degradation at 1100°C in cases when some amount of liquid forms owing to the presence of K2SO4 as a minor ash constituent. Two types of liquid infiltrations are observed depending on the principal oxide (i.e., CaO or SiO2) in the deposit. The degradation is primarily the result of mechanical damage, which results from infiltration caused by the interaction of liquid K2SO4 with either the CaO or SiO2. The TBCs used in this work are representative of commonly used coatings used in the hottest sections of land-based gas turbines. The specimens consist of 7YSZ top coats deposited on

  1. Seedling survival of Handroanthus impetiginosus (Mart ex DC Mattos in a semi-arid environment through modified germination speed and post-germination desiccation tolerance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. R. Martins

    Full Text Available Abstract Uniform rapid seed germination generally forms a great risk for the plant population if subsequent intermittent precipitation causes desiccation and seedling death. Handroanthus impetiginosus can be found commonly in a wide range of biomes within Brazil including those that are semi-arid. Germination and early growth was studied to understand how germinated seeds survive under these stringent conditions. Accessions were sampled from four seasonally dry biomes in Brazil. Precipitation at the start of the rainy season in the Caatinga, a semi-arid biome, is less predictable and the number of successive dry days per dry interval in the first four months of the rainy season was higher than in the other studied biomes. Plants from the Caatinga produced thicker seeds and this trait concurred with slow germination and stronger osmotic inhibition of germination across the accessions, forming a stress avoidance mechanism in the Caatinga. Post-germination desiccation tolerance was high in the Caatinga accession, could be re-induced in accessions from biomes with more regular precipitation (Cerrado and transition zone, but remained poor in the Cerradão accession; thus forming a stress tolerance mechanism. Production of adventitious roots ascertained survival of all tested individuals from all four locations, even if protruded radicles did not survive desiccation, forming an additional stress tolerance mechanism. A sequence of stress avoidance and stress tolerance mechanisms in seeds and germinated seeds was associated with precipitation patterns in different biomes. These mechanisms purportedly allow rapid seedling establishment when conditions are suitable and enable survival of the young seedling when conditions are adverse.

  2. Remote sensing monitoring of land restoration interventions in semi-arid environments with a before-after control-impact statistical design

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meroni, Michele; Schucknecht, Anne; Fasbender, Dominique; Rembold, Felix; Fava, Francesco; Mauclaire, Margaux; Goffner, Deborah; Di Lucchio, Luisa M.; Leonardi, Ugo

    2017-07-01

    Restoration interventions to combat land degradation are carried out in arid and semi-arid areas to improve vegetation cover and land productivity. Evaluating the success of an intervention over time is challenging due to various constraints (e.g. difficult-to-access areas, lack of long-term records) and the lack of standardised and affordable methodologies. We propose a semi-automatic methodology that uses remote sensing data to provide a rapid, standardised and objective assessment of the biophysical impact, in terms of vegetation cover, of restoration interventions. The Normalised Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI) is used as a proxy for vegetation cover. Recognising that changes in vegetation cover are naturally due to environmental factors such as seasonality and inter-annual climate variability, conclusions about the success of the intervention cannot be drawn by focussing on the intervention area only. We therefore use a comparative method that analyses the temporal variations (before and after the intervention) of the NDVI of the intervention area with respect to multiple control sites that are automatically and randomly selected from a set of candidates that are similar to the intervention area. Similarity is defined in terms of class composition as derived from an ISODATA classification of the imagery before the intervention. The method provides an estimate of the magnitude and significance of the difference in greenness change between the intervention area and control areas. As a case study, the methodology is applied to 15 restoration interventions carried out in Senegal. The impact of the interventions is analysed using 250-m MODIS and 30-m Landsat data. Results show that a significant improvement in vegetation cover was detectable only in one third of the analysed interventions, which is consistent with independent qualitative assessments based on field observations and visual analysis of high resolution imagery. Rural development agencies may

  3. Mercury speciation and distribution in a glacierized mountain environment and their relevance to environmental risks in the inland Tibetan Plateau.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Xuejun; Zhang, Qianggong; Kang, Shichang; Guo, Junming; Li, Xiaofei; Yu, Zhengliang; Zhang, Guoshuai; Qu, Dongmei; Huang, Jie; Cong, Zhiyuan; Wu, Guangjian

    2018-08-01

    Glacierized mountain environments can preserve and release mercury (Hg) and play an important role in regional Hg biogeochemical cycling. However, the behavior of Hg in glacierized mountain environments and its environmental risks remain poorly constrained. In this research, glacier meltwater, runoff and wetland water were sampled in Zhadang-Qugaqie basin (ZQB), a typical glacierized mountain environment in the inland Tibetan Plateau, to investigate Hg distribution and its relevance to environmental risks. The total mercury (THg) concentrations ranged from 0.82 to 6.98ng·L -1 , and non-parametric pairwise multiple comparisons of the THg concentrations among the three different water samples showed that the THg concentrations were comparable. The total methylmercury (TMeHg) concentrations ranged from 0.041 to 0.115ng·L -1 , and non-parametric pairwise multiple comparisons of the TMeHg concentrations showed a significant difference. Both the THg and MeHg concentrations of water samples from the ZQB were comparable to those of other remote areas, indicating that Hg concentrations in the ZQB watershed are equivalent to the global background level. Particulate Hg was the predominant form of Hg in all runoff samples, and was significantly correlated with the total suspended particle (TSP) and not correlated with the dissolved organic carbon (DOC) concentration. The distribution of mercury in the wetland water differed from that of the other water samples. THg exhibited a significant correlation with DOC as well as TMeHg, whereas neither THg nor TMeHg was associated with TSP. Based on the above findings and the results from previous work, we propose a conceptual model illustrating the four Hg distribution zones in glacierized environments. We highlight that wetlands may enhance the potential hazards of Hg released from melting glaciers, making them a vital zone for investigating the environmental effects of Hg in glacierized environments and beyond. Copyright © 2018

  4. Hydrologic and geochemical controls on the transport of radionuclides in natural undisturbed arid environments as determined by accelerator mass spectrometry measurements. 1997 annual progress report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Caffee, M.W.; Finkel, R.C.; McAninch, J.E.; Nimz, G.J.

    1997-01-01

    'During FY97 this study has developed unique accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) analytical techniques for measurement of 99 Tc and 129 I, which compliments an improved capability for measurement of 36 Cl. The ability to measure these nuclides in natural soil samples has been demonstrated through analytical results obtained during FY97. Methods to determine the distribution of these nuclides in their natural setting, which will vary depending on site-specific chemical conditions, have also been developed. Spatially well-characterized soil samples have been collected from the vadose zone to a depth of -5 meters at the Nevada Test Site. To do this, a deep trench has been excavated and the geological setting for the soils has been well documented. Physical, chemical, and isotopic analysis of these soil samples during the course of this research project will result in a numerical computer model for moisture and radionuclide migration in arid soils that is valuable to nuclear waste storage, site remediation, and groundwater recharge concerns.'

  5. Effects of legume species introduction on vegetation and soil nutrient development on abandoned croplands in a semi-arid environment on the Loess Plateau, China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yuan, Zi-Qiang; Yu, Kai-Liang; Epstein, Howard; Fang, Chao; Li, Jun-Ting; Liu, Qian-Qian; Liu, Xue-Wei; Gao, Wen-Juan; Li, Feng-Min

    2016-01-15

    Revegetation facilitated by legume species introduction has been used for soil erosion control on the Loess Plateau, China. However, it is still unclear how vegetation and soil resources develop during this restoration process, especially over the longer term. In this study, we investigated the changes of plant aboveground biomass, vegetation cover, species richness and density of all individuals, and soil total nitrogen, mineral nitrogen, total phosphorus and available phosphorus over 11 years from 2003 to 2013 in three treatments (natural revegetation, Medicago sativa L. introduction and Melilotus suaveolens L. introduction) on the semi-arid Loess Plateau. Medicago significantly increased aboveground biomass and vegetation cover, and soil total nitrogen and mineral nitrogen contents. The Medicago treatment had lower species richness and density of all individuals, lower soil moisture in the deep soil (i.e., 1.4-5m), and lower soil available phosphorus. Melilotus introduction significantly increased aboveground biomass in only the first two years, and it was not an effective approach to improve vegetation biomass and cover, and soil nutrients, especially in later stages of revegetation. Overall, our study suggests that M. sativa can be the preferred plant species for revegetation of degraded ecosystems on the Loess Plateau, although phosphorus fertilizer should be applied for the sustainability of the revegetation. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Metagenomic Analysis of Subtidal Sediments from Polar and Subpolar Coastal Environments Highlights the Relevance of Anaerobic Hydrocarbon Degradation Processes

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Espinola, Fernando J.; Dionisi, Hebe M.; Borglin, Sharon; Brislawn, Colin J.; Jansson, Janet K.; Mac Cormack, Walter P.; Carroll, Jolynn; Sjoling, Sara; Lozada , Mariana

    2018-01-02

    In this work, we analyzed the community structure and metabolic potential of sediment microbial communities in high-latitude coastal environments subjected to low to moderate levels of chronic pollution. Subtidal sediments from four low-energy inlets located in polar and subpolar regions from both Hemispheres were analyzed using large-scale 16S rRNA gene and metagenomic sequencing. Communities showed high diversity (Shannon’s index 6.8 to 10.2), with distinct phylogenetic structures (<40% shared taxa at the Phylum level among regions) but similar metabolic potential in terms of sequences assigned to KOs. Environmental factors (mainly salinity, temperature, and in less extent organic pollution) were drivers of both phylogenetic and functional traits. Bacterial taxa correlating with hydrocarbon pollution included families of anaerobic or facultative anaerobic lifestyle, such as Desulfuromonadaceae, Geobacteraceae, and Rhodocyclaceae. In accordance, biomarker genes for anaerobic hydrocarbon degradation (bamA, ebdA, bcrA, and bssA) were prevalent, only outnumbered by alkB, and their sequences were taxonomically binned to the same bacterial groups. BssA-assigned metagenomic sequences showed an extremely wide diversity distributed all along the phylogeny known for this gene, including bssA sensu stricto, nmsA, assA, and other clusters from poorly or not yet described variants. This work increases our understanding of microbial community patterns in cold coastal sediments, and highlights the relevance of anaerobic hydrocarbon degradation processes in subtidal environments.

  7. Distribution and relevance of iodinated X-ray contrast media and iodinated trihalomethanes in an aquatic environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Zhifa; Li, Xia; Hu, Xialin; Yin, Daqiang

    2017-10-01

    Distribution and relevance of iodinated X-ray contrast media (ICM) and iodinated disinfection byproducts (I-DBPs) in a real aquatic environment have been rarely documented. In this paper, some ICM were proven to be strongly correlated with I-DBPs through investigation of five ICM and five iodinated trihalomethanes (I-THMs) in surface water and two drinking water treatment plants (DWTPs) of the Yangtze River Delta, China. The total ICM concentrations in Taihu Lake and the Huangpu River ranged from 88.7 to 131 ng L -1 and 102-252 ng L -1 , respectively. While the total I-THM concentrations ranged from 128 to 967 ng L -1 in Taihu Lake and 267-680 ng L -1 in the Huangpu River. Iohexol, the dominant ICM, showed significant positive correlation (p < 0.01) with CHClI 2 in Taihu Lake. Iopamidol and iomeprol correlated positively (p < 0.01) with some I-THMs in the Huangpu River. The observed pronounced correlations between ICM and I-THMs indicated that ICM play an important role in the formation of I-THMs in a real aquatic environment. Characteristics of the I-THM species distributions indicated that I-THMs may be transformed by natural conditions. Both DWTPs showed negligible removal efficiencies for total ICM (<20%). Strikingly high concentrations of total I-THMs were observed in the finished water (2848 ng L -1 in conventional DWTP and 356 ng L -1 in advanced DWTP). Obvious transformation of ICM to I-THMs was observed during the chlorination and ozonization processes in DWTPs. We suggest that ICM is an important source for I-DBP formation in the real aquatic environment. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Water relations and the effects of clearing invasive Prosopis trees on groundwater in an arid environment in the Northern Cape, South Africa

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Dzikiti, Sebinasi

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Resources and Environment, 11 Jan Cilliers Street, 7599, Stellenbosch, South Africa: e-mail: sdzikiti@csir.co.za; kschachtschneider@csir.co.za; mgush@csir.co.za b Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, Natural Resources and Environment..., 7599, Stellenbosch, South Africa. E-mail: gmoses@csir.co.za *Corresponding author: Sebinasi Dzikiti Natural Resources and the Environment, Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, 11 Jan Cilliers Street, 7599, Stellenbosch South Africa...

  9. Effects of nitrogen and phosphorus fertilizer on crop yields in a field pea-spring wheat-potato rotation system with calcareous soil in semi-arid environments

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chang-An Liu

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available The object of the present study was to investigate the yield-affecting mechanisms influenced by N and P applications in rainfed areas with calcareous soil. The experimental treatments were as follows: NF (no fertilizer, N (nitrogen, P (phosphorus, and NP (nitrogen plus phosphorus in a field pea-spring wheat-potato cropping system. This study was conducted over six years (2003-2008 on China’s semi-arid Loess Plateau. The fertilizer treatments were found to decrease the soil water content more than the NF treatment in each of the growing seasons. The annual average yields of the field pea crops during the entire experimental period were 635, 677, 858, and 1117 kg/ha for the NF, N, P, and NP treatments, respectively. The annual average yields were 673, 547, 966, and 1056 kg/ha for the spring wheat crops for the NF, N, P, and NP treatments, respectively. Also, the annual average yields were 1476, 2120, 1480, and 2424 kg/ha for the potato crops for the NF, N, P, and NP treatments, respectively. In the second cycle of the three-year rotation, the pea and spring wheat yields in the P treatment were 1.2 and 2.8 times higher than that in the N treatment, respectively. Meanwhile, the potato crop yield in the N treatment was 3.1 times higher than that in the P treatment. In conclusion, the P fertilizer was found to increase the yields of the field pea and wheat crops, and the N fertilizer increased the potato crop yield in rainfed areas with calcareous soil.

  10. Effects of nitrogen and phosphorus fertilizer on crop yields in a field pea-spring wheat-potato rotation system with calcareous soil in semi-arid environments

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liu, C.A.; Zhang, S.; Hua, S.; Rao, X.

    2016-11-01

    The object of the present study was to investigate the yield-affecting mechanisms influenced by N and P applications in rainfed areas with calcareous soil. The experimental treatments were as follows: NF (no fertilizer), N (nitrogen), P (phosphorus), and NP (nitrogen plus phosphorus) in a field pea-spring wheat-potato cropping system. This study was conducted over six years (2003-2008) on China’s semi-arid Loess Plateau. The fertilizer treatments were found to decrease the soil water content more than the NF treatment in each of the growing seasons. The annual average yields of the field pea crops during the entire experimental period were 635, 677, 858, and 1117 kg/ha for the NF, N, P, and NP treatments, respectively. The annual average yields were 673, 547, 966, and 1056 kg/ha for the spring wheat crops for the NF, N, P, and NP treatments, respectively. Also, the annual average yields were 1476, 2120, 1480, and 2424 kg/ha for the potato crops for the NF, N, P, and NP treatments, respectively. In the second cycle of the three-year rotation, the pea and spring wheat yields in the P treatment were 1.2 and 2.8 times higher than that in the N treatment, respectively. Meanwhile, the potato crop yield in the N treatment was 3.1 times higher than that in the P treatment. In conclusion, the P fertilizer was found to increase the yields of the field pea and wheat crops, and the N fertilizer increased the potato crop yield in rainfed areas with calcareous soil. (Author)

  11. Water use efficiency and crop water balance of rainfed wheat in a semi-arid environment: sensitivity of future changes to projected climate changes and soil type

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Yanmin; Liu, De Li; Anwar, Muhuddin Rajin; O'Leary, Garry; Macadam, Ian; Yang, Yonghui

    2016-02-01

    Wheat production is expected to be affected by climate change through changing components of the crop water balance such as rainfall, evapotranspiration (ET), runoff and drainage. We used the Agricultural Production Systems Simulator (APSIM)-wheat model to simulate the potential impact of climate change on field water balance, ET and water use efficiency (WUE) under the SRES A2 emissions scenario. We ran APSIM with daily climate data statistically downscaled from 18 Global Circulation Models (GCMs). Twelve soil types of varying plant available water holding capacity (PAWC) at six sites across semi-arid southeastern Australia were considered. Biases in the GCM-simulated climate data were bias-corrected against observations for the 1961-1999 baseline period. However, biases in the APSIM output data relative to APSIM simulations forced with climate observations remained. A secondary bias correction was therefore performed on the APSIM outputs. Bias-corrected APSIM outputs for a future period (2021-2040) were compared with APSIM outputs generated using observations for the baseline period to obtain future changes. The results show that effective rainfall was decreased over all sites due to decreased growing season rainfall. ET was decreased through reduced soil evaporation and crop transpiration. There were no significant changes in runoff at any site. The variation in deep drainage between sites was much greater than for runoff, ranging from less than a few millimetres at the drier sites to over 100 mm at the wetter. However, in general, the averaged drainage over different soil types were not significantly different between the baseline (1961-1999) and future period of 2021-2040 ( P > 0.05). For the wetter sites, the variations in the future changes in drainage and runoff between the 18 GCMs were larger than those of the drier sites. At the dry sites, the variation in drainage decreased as PAWC increased. Overall, water use efficiency based on transpiration (WUE

  12. The role of surface water redistribution in an area of patterned vegetation in a semi-arid environment, south-west Niger

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bromley, J.; Brouwer, J.; Barker, A. P.; Gaze, S. R.; Valentine, C.

    1997-11-01

    The surface hydrology of a semi-arid area of patterned vegetation in south-west Niger is described. In this region alternating bands of vegetation and bare ground aligned along the contours of a gently sloping terrain give rise to a phenomenon known as `brousse tigrée' (tiger bush). At the selected study site the vegetation bands are 10-30 m wide, separated by 50-100-m-wide bands of bare ground. Five species of shrub dominate, Guiera senegalensis, Combretum micranthum, C. nigricans, Acacia ataxacantha and A. macrostachya. Herbaceous vegetation is generally limited to the upslope edges of vegetation bands. A comprehensive field programme was undertaken to investigate the hydrology. Topographic, vegetation and surface feature surveys were carried out in conjunction with the measurement of rainfall, surface and subsurface hydraulic conductivity, particle size and soil moisture content. Four types of vegetation class are recognised, each tending to occupy a constant position relative to the others and to the regional slope. In a downslope direction the classes are: bare ground, grassy open bush, closed bush, bare open bush, bare ground etc. The nature of the ground surface is closely linked to the vegetation class. Over the bare, bare open and grassy open classes various types of surface crust are present with each type of crust tending to occupy a constant position on the regional slope relative to the vegetation class and other crust types. Below closed bush crusts are generally absent. The typical downslope sequence from the downslope boundary of a vegetation band is: structural (sieving) crust→erosion crust→(gravel crust)→sedimentation crust→microphytic sedimentation crust→no crust→sieving crust, etc. It is also shown that these crust types are dynamic and evolve from one to the other as hydrological conditions change. Hydraulic conductivities of surface crusts are low, typically falling within the range 10 -6-10 -7 m s -1. The presence of large

  13. Conceptual model of a coastal hydrosystem in a semi-arid environment subjected to the climate change: the case of Lavrion, Greece

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pouliaris, Christos; Schumann, Philipp; Danneberg, Nils-Christian; Foglia, Laura; Kallioras, Andreas; Schüth, Christoph

    2015-04-01

    Groundwater management in arid areas has become a major issue worldwide, and it is expected to be exacerbated due to climate change. Low annual precipitation and high evaporation potential are the key features of these areas, with additional pressure added to the system due to abstractions for irrigation and water supply purposes. Typical example of such scenarios exist in the Mediterranean area, where drought and water scarcity, especially in the warm period of the hydrological year, give rise to major management issues in coastal areas. Among the different solutions, the implementation of Managed Aquifer Recharge (MAR) schemes have been suggested in the EU FP7 project MARSOL (Demonstrating Managed Aquifer Recharge as a Solution to Water Scarcity and Drought). In the project, different sites across the Mediterranean are tested for investigating the viability of various MAR techniques in different hydrological systems facing qualitative and quantitative deterioration of their groundwater resources. The coastal hydrosystem of Lavrion was selected due to its typical Mediterranean characteristics (climatic, hydrologic, hydrogeological, geological etc.); all within a rather small area of extent ( mining and metallurgical activities The modelling approach will include the development of three distinct models that will be integrated. The aim is to depict how systems with characteristics like the ones mentioned above perform and, which different scenarios can be applied, aiming at identifying the most viable (with respect to water budget) MAR strategy for the specific area. Meteorological data, field data and site investigations provide the input data for all the different models. The field activities already conducted included: an inventory of all existing pumping wells; the development of a monitoring network for qualitative and quantitative environmental data acquisition at different scales and hydrologic zones; installation of multi-level piezometers for tailored

  14. Determination of soil degradation in argentine semi-arid environments from remote sensors: case department of patagones, province of buenos aires

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pezzola, Alejandro; Cacella, Alejandra; Enrique, Mario; Winschel, Cristina

    2017-04-01

    The continental territory of the Argentine Republic owns 75% of its surface under arid and semiarid conditions to the west of the meridian of 64°. Wind erosion is the main physical cause of desertification. In the Pampena area, studies showed that the sandy loam soils were more pronounced than the sandy loam with significant losses of organic matter, decreases in the cation exchange capacity and modification of the mineral composition of the very fine sand fraction (From 73 to 100 μm), with increases in the proportion of heavy minerals (magnetite) relative to light (quartz). In the Patagones department, Buenos Aires province, the soils with a sandy-loamy texture, which are transported by wind and deposited on calcium carbonate (tosca), with little moisture retention and susceptible to wind erosion. In the 1980s and 1990s, increases in rainfall above the historical average led to a shift of the isohytes towards the southwest, leading to agricultural intensification that caused greater pressure on the soil and native vegetation. This advance on the native vegetation within the Patagones produced a reduction between 1975 and 2009 of 432,280 ha, leaving only 31% of the area covered by native forest - shrub xerophyte today. Between 2005-2009, the call "agricultural drought" caused losses in crops, wheat - oats and natural pastures associated with the native forest, causing a significant deterioration of the soil, exposing them to wind erosion. Remote sensors represent a very valuable technology for the mapping and evaluation of soil erosion. The availability of multispectral images allows the mapping and monitoring of changes in the dynamics of the erosion process. The objective of this work was to make an expeditious diagnosis of the surface affected by wind erosion and to evaluate the degree to which the soils destined for agriculture and livestock were affected. For this purpose, Terra's MODIS (Moderate-Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer) sensor information was

  15. Hazard Analysis of Arid and Semi-Arid (ASAL) Regions of Kenya ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Objectives: The overall objective of this study was to prioritize hazards in the ASAL region. ... Health, local Government, and Provincial Administration, Environment and NGO. ... and country level to inform interventions and other developmental activities. Women ... Keywords: hazard, natural disaster, disaster risk, arid, Kenya ...

  16. A genetic model based on evapoconcentration for sediment-hosted exotic-Cu mineralization in arid environments: the case of the El Tesoro Central copper deposit, Atacama Desert, Chile

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernández-Mort, A.; Riquelme, R.; Alonso-Zarza, A. M.; Campos, E.; Bissig, T.; Mpodozis, C.; Carretier, S.; Herrera, C.; Tapia, M.; Pizarro, H.; Muñoz, S.

    2017-12-01

    Although the formation of exotic-Cu deposits is controlled by multiple factors, the role of the sedimentary environment has not been well defined. We present a case study of the El Tesoro Central exotic-Cu deposit located in the Atacama Desert of northern Chile. This deposit consists of two mineralized bodies hosted within Late Cenozoic gravels deposited in an arid continental environment dominated by alluvial fans with sub-surficial ponded water bodies formed at the foot of these fans or within the interfan areas. Both exotic-Cu orebodies mostly consist of chrysocolla, copper wad, atacamite, paratacamite, quartz, opal, and calcite. The most commonly observed paragenesis comprises chrysocolla, silica minerals, and calcite and records a progressive increase in pH, which is notably influenced by evaporation. The results of stable isotope analyses (δ13C and δ18O) and hydrogeochemical simulations confirm that evapoconcentration is the main controlling factor in the exotic-Cu mineralization at El Tesoro Central. This conclusion complements the traditional genetic model based on the gradual neutralization of highly oversaturated Cu-bearing solutions that progressively cement the gravels and underlying bedrock regardless of the depositional environment. This study concludes that in exotic-Cu deposits formed relatively far from the source, a favorable sedimentary environment and particular hydrologic and climatic conditions are essential to trap, accumulate, evapoconcentrate, neutralize and saturate Cu-bearing solutions to trigger mineralization. Thus, detailed sedimentological studies should be incorporated when devising exploration strategies in order to discover new exotic-Cu resources, particularly if they are expected to have formed relatively far from the metal sources.

  17. Soil erosion and runoff response in almond orchards under two shrub cover-crops strips in a high slope in semi-arid environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Carceles-Rodriguez, B.; Francia-Martinez, J. R.; Martinez-Raya, A.; Duran-Zuazo, V. H.; Rodriguez-Pleguezuelo, C. R.; Casado-Mateos, J. P.

    2009-01-01

    Soil erosion is one of the main physical processes of land degradation in Spain. Several studies in the Mediterranean environment have demonstrated the positive effect of vegetation covers on the reduction of water erosion and their indirect improvement of the soil physical and chemical properties, essentially by the incorporation of organic matter. (Author)

  18. The effect of nitrogen fertilization and supplemental irrigation on seed and biomass productivity of Cynara cardunculus growing in a semi-arid environment in Central Greece

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Archontoulis, S.V.; Danalatos, N.G.; Struik, P.C.; Batzogiannis, D.; Savas, V.

    2010-01-01

    The effects of nitrogen fertilization (range: 0–240 kg N/ha; end of April) and supplemental irrigation (3 applications; May–June) on growth, biomass and seed yield of Cynara cardunculus were investigated in a dry environment of central Greece (Velestino, 2008/2009) during the crop’s second growth

  19. Passive Design Strategies to Enhance Natural Ventilation in Buildings "Election of Passive Design Strategies to Achieve Natural Ventilation in Iraqi Urban Environment with Hot Arid Climate"

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ghada M.Ismael Abdul Razzaq Kamoona

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available the natural ventilation in buildings is one of effective strategies for achieving energy efficiency in buildings by employing methods and ways of passive design, as well as its efficiency in providing high ranges of thermal comfort for occupants in buildings and raises their productivity. Because the concept of natural ventilation for many people confined to achieve through the windows and openings only, become necessary to provide this research to demonstrate the various passive design strategies for natural ventilation. Then, research problem: Insufficient knowledge about the importance and mechanism of the application of passive design strategies for natural ventilation in buildings. The research objective is: Analysis of passive design strategies to achieve natural ventilation in buildings, for the purpose of the proper selection of them to Iraqi urban environment. Accordingly, the research included two parts: First, the theoretical part, which dealt with the conceptual framework of natural ventilation and deriving the most important aspects in it, in order to adopted as a base for the practical part of the research. Second: the practical part, which analyzed examples of buildings projects that employed various design strategies for natural ventilation, according to the theoretical framework that has been drawn. The main conclusion is, Necessity to adopt various passive design strategies for natural ventilation in Iraqi urban environment with hot dry climate, as they have a significant impact in reducing the energy consumption for the purposes of ventilation and cooling, as well as for its efficiency in improving air quality in indoor environments of buildings.

  20. Rainwater harvesting in arid and semi-arid zones

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boers, T.M.

    1994-01-01

    In arid and semi-arid regions, the scarcity of water can be alleviated by rainwater harvesting, which is defined as a method of inducing, collecting, storing, and conserving local surface runoff for agriculture. Rainwater harvesting can be applied with different

  1. Human health and the environment: Predicting plasma protein binding and metabolic clearance rates of environmentally relevant chemicals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    In silico methods provide a rapid, inexpensive means of screening a wide array of environmentally relevant pollutants, pesticides, fungicides and consumer products for further toxicity testing. Physiologically based pharmacokinetic (PBPK) models bridge the gap between in vitro as...

  2. Bat urea-derived minerals in arid environment. First identification of allantoin, C4H6N4O3, in Kahf Kharrat Najem Cave, United Arab Emirates

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Philippe Audra

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Kahf Kharrat Najem Cave is a small cave in United Arab Emirates (UAE that hosts a bat colony which is the source of guano deposits and peculiar centimeter-long yellowish stalactites. The mineralogy and geochemistry of these deposits were analyzed using powder X-ray diffraction (XRD, energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopic microanalysis (EDX, scanning electron microscope (SEM, and stable isotope composition (δ13C and δ15N. Urea CO(NH22 was found to be the main compound of these stalactites, while allantoin C4H6N4O3 was found to be an accessory urea byproduct. This paper is the first to mention allantoin in a cave environment. We also identified rare sulfate minerals (aphthitalite, alunite and phosphates that probably correspond to the archerite-biphosphammite series. The occurrence of these rare bat-related minerals is due to the extremely dry conditions in the cave, which accounts for the extraordinary preservation of the guano deposits and allows for the crystallization of these very soluble minerals.

  3. A GIS-based decision support tool for renewable energy management and planning in semi-arid rural environments of northeast of Brazil

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tiba, C.; Fraidenraich, N.; Barbosa, E.M. de S. [Departamento de Energia Nuclear da Universidade Federal de Pernambuco, Av. Prof. Luiz Freire, 1000 - CDU, CEP 50.740-540, Recife, Pernambuco (Brazil); Candeias, A.L.B. [Departamento de Engenharia Cartografica da Universidade Federal de Pernambuco, Av. Academico Helio Ramos, s/n - CDU, Recife, Pernambuco (Brazil); de Carvalho Neto, P.B.; de Melo Filho, J.B. [Companhia Hidro Eletrica do Sao Francisco -DTG- CHESF, Recife, Pernambuco (Brazil)

    2010-12-15

    This work describes the development of a management and planning system on a GIS (Geographic Information System) platform destined to decision makers that is, administrators, planners or consultants in renewable energies. It was conceived to deal with the management and planning of solar systems, biomass and aeolics in rural regions of Brazil. The prototype of the GIS tool covers an area of 183, 500 km{sup 2} and is made up of three blocks: management of installed renewable systems, inclusion (planning) of new systems and updating of the data banks. The GISA SOL 1.0 (Geographic Information System Applied to Solar Energy) has a total of 80 layers of information that permit the realization of spatial analyses on management and planning of renewable sources of energy at macro-spatial (state) and local (municipality) levels. A description and the methodology used for its development and a description of the functionalities will be made here. The system was developed mainly for PV systems as a support tool for management and planning of the Energy Development Program for States and Municipalities (PRODEEM), a program for inclusion in large scale of solar photovoltaic energy in the rural environment, conducted by the Ministry of Mines and Energy of Brazil. (author)

  4. Numerical simulation of the impact of reforestation on winter meteorology and environment in a semi-arid urban valley, Northwestern China

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yu, Ye, E-mail: yyu@lzb.ac.cn [Clod and Arid Regions Environmental and Engineering Research Institute, Key Laboratory of Land Surface Process and Climate Change in Cold & Arid Regions, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou 730000 (China); He, Jianjun, E-mail: 18766167147@163.com [Clod and Arid Regions Environmental and Engineering Research Institute, Key Laboratory of Land Surface Process and Climate Change in Cold & Arid Regions, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou 730000 (China); College of Environmental Science & Engineering, Nankai University, Tianjin 300071 (China); Zhao, Suping [Clod and Arid Regions Environmental and Engineering Research Institute, Key Laboratory of Land Surface Process and Climate Change in Cold & Arid Regions, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou 730000 (China); Liu, Na [Clod and Arid Regions Environmental and Engineering Research Institute, Key Laboratory of Land Surface Process and Climate Change in Cold & Arid Regions, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou 730000 (China); Weather Modification Office, Qinghai Meteorological Bureau, Xining 810001 (China); Chen, Jinbei [Clod and Arid Regions Environmental and Engineering Research Institute, Key Laboratory of Land Surface Process and Climate Change in Cold & Arid Regions, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Lanzhou 730000 (China); Mao, Hongjun; Wu, Lin [College of Environmental Science & Engineering, Nankai University, Tianjin 300071 (China)

    2016-11-01

    Since 1999 Chinese government has made great effort to reforest the south and north mountains surrounding urban Lanzhou – a city located in a river valley, Northwestern China. Until 2009 obvious land use change occurred, with 69.2% of the reforested area been changed from grasslands, croplands, barren or sparsely vegetated land to closed shrublands and 20.6% from closed shrublands, grasslands, and croplands to forests. Reforestation changes land-surface properties, with possible impact on the evolution of atmospheric variables. To understand to what extent the local meteorology and environment could be affected by reforestation in winter, and through what processes, two sets of simulations were conducted using the Weather Research and Forecasting model (WRF) and the FLEXible PARTicle (FLEXPART) dispersion model for a control case with high-resolution remotely sensed land cover data for 2009 and a scenario assuming no reforestation since 1999. Results suggested that the changes in albedo, surface exchange coefficient and surface soil heat conductivity related to reforestation led to the changes in surface net radiation and surface energy partitioning, which in turn affected the meteorological fields and enhanced the mountain-valley wind circulation. Replacement of shrublands and grassland with forest in the south mountain through reforestation play a dominant role in the enhancement of mountain-valley wind circulation. Reforestation increased the amount of air exchanged between the valley and the outside during the day, with the largest hourly increase of 10% on calm weather days and a monthly mean hourly increase of 2% for the study period (Dec. 2009). Reforestation affected the spatial distribution of pollutants and slightly improved the urban air quality, especially in the eastern valley. Results from this study provide useful information for future urban air quality management and reforestation plan, and some experience for cities with similar situations in

  5. Numerical simulation of the impact of reforestation on winter meteorology and environment in a semi-arid urban valley, Northwestern China

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yu, Ye; He, Jianjun; Zhao, Suping; Liu, Na; Chen, Jinbei; Mao, Hongjun; Wu, Lin

    2016-01-01

    Since 1999 Chinese government has made great effort to reforest the south and north mountains surrounding urban Lanzhou – a city located in a river valley, Northwestern China. Until 2009 obvious land use change occurred, with 69.2% of the reforested area been changed from grasslands, croplands, barren or sparsely vegetated land to closed shrublands and 20.6% from closed shrublands, grasslands, and croplands to forests. Reforestation changes land-surface properties, with possible impact on the evolution of atmospheric variables. To understand to what extent the local meteorology and environment could be affected by reforestation in winter, and through what processes, two sets of simulations were conducted using the Weather Research and Forecasting model (WRF) and the FLEXible PARTicle (FLEXPART) dispersion model for a control case with high-resolution remotely sensed land cover data for 2009 and a scenario assuming no reforestation since 1999. Results suggested that the changes in albedo, surface exchange coefficient and surface soil heat conductivity related to reforestation led to the changes in surface net radiation and surface energy partitioning, which in turn affected the meteorological fields and enhanced the mountain-valley wind circulation. Replacement of shrublands and grassland with forest in the south mountain through reforestation play a dominant role in the enhancement of mountain-valley wind circulation. Reforestation increased the amount of air exchanged between the valley and the outside during the day, with the largest hourly increase of 10% on calm weather days and a monthly mean hourly increase of 2% for the study period (Dec. 2009). Reforestation affected the spatial distribution of pollutants and slightly improved the urban air quality, especially in the eastern valley. Results from this study provide useful information for future urban air quality management and reforestation plan, and some experience for cities with similar situations in

  6. Setting up an atmospheric-hydrologic model for seasonal forecasts of water flow into dams in a mountainous semi-arid environment (Cyprus)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Camera, Corrado; Bruggeman, Adriana; Zittis, Georgios; Hadjinicolaou, Panos

    2017-04-01

    partitioning of deep percolation between losses and baseflow contribution (LOSS_BASE), water retention depth (RETDEPRTFAC), overland roughness (OVROUGHRTFAC), and channel manning coefficients (MANN). The calibrated WRF-Hydro shows a good ability to reproduce annual total streamflow (-19% error) and total peak discharge volumes (+3% error), although very high values of MANN were used to match the timing of the peak and get positive values of Nash-Sutcliffe efficiency coefficient (0.13). The two most sensitive parameters for the modeled seasonal flow were REFKDT and LOSS_BASE. Simulations of the calibrated WRF-Hydro with WRF modelled atmospheric forcing showed high errors in comparison with those forced with observations, which can be corrected only by modifying the most sensitive parameters by at least one order of magnitude. This study has received funding from the EU H2020 BINGO Project (GA 641739). Camera C., Bruggeman A., Hadjinicolaou P., Pashiardis S., Lange M.A., 2016. Evaluation of interpolation techniques for the creation of gridded daily precipitation (1 × 1 km2); Cyprus, 1980-2010. J Geophys Res Atmos 119, 693-712, DOI:10.1002/2013JD020611 Camera C., Bruggeman A., Hadjinicolaou P., Michaelides S., Lange M.A., 2016. Evaluation of a spatial rainfall generator for generating high resolution precipitation projections over orographically complex terrain. Stoch Environ Res Risk Assess, DOI 10.1007/s00477-016-1239-1

  7. Aridity and grazing as convergent selective forces: an experiment with an Arid Chaco bunchgrass.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quiroga, R Emiliano; Golluscio, Rodolfo A; Blanco, Lisandro J; Fernández, Roberto J

    2010-10-01

    It has been proposed that aridity and grazing are convergent selective forces: each one selects for traits conferring resistance to both. However, this conceptual model has not yet been experimentally validated. The aim of this work was to experimentally evaluate the effect of aridity and grazing, as selective forces, on drought and grazing resistance of populations of Trichloris crinita, a native perennial forage grass of the Argentinean Arid Chaco region. We collected seeds in sites with four different combinations of aridity and grazing history (semiarid/ subhumid x heavily grazed/lightly grazed), established them in pots in a common garden, and subjected the resulting plants to different combinations of drought and defoliation. Our results agreed with the convergence model. Aridity has selected T. crinita genotypes that respond better to drought and defoliation in terms of sexual reproduction and leaf growth, and that can evade grazing due to a lower shoot: root ratio and a higher resource allocation to reserves (starch) in stem bases. Similarly, grazing has selected genotypes that respond better to drought and defoliation in terms of sexual reproduction and that can evade grazing due to a lower digestibility of leaf blades. These results allow us to extend concepts of previous models in plant adaptation to herbivory to models on plant adaptation to drought. The only variable in which we obtained a result opposite to predictions was plant height, as plants from semiarid sites were taller (and with more erect tillers) than plants from subhumid sites; we hypothesize that this result might have been a consequence of the selection exerted by the high solar radiation and soil temperatures of semiarid sites. In addition, our work allows for the prediction of the effects of dry or wet growing seasons on the performance of T. crinita plants. Our results suggest that we can rely on dry environments for selecting grazing-resistant genotypes and on high grazing pressure

  8. Interstitial water studies on Irish Sea sediments and their relevance to the fate of transuranic nuclides in the marine environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Harvey, B.R.

    1981-01-01

    This paper describes the physico-chemical conditions existing in the interstitial waters of sediments in contaminated areas of the Irish Sea, which provide valuable information on the sedimentary environment into which radioactive waste products become incorporated. It is recommended that these measurements be made in areas where transuranic behaviour can be determined, which then would allow useful predictions to be made concerning the possible behaviour of transuranics in other, uncontaminated, environments, if these environments can be physico-chemically correlated in the same way. (author)

  9. Time-driven activity-based costing in an outpatient clinic environment: development, relevance and managerial impact.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demeere, Nathalie; Stouthuysen, Kristof; Roodhooft, Filip

    2009-10-01

    Healthcare managers are continuously urged to provide better patient services at a lower cost. To cope with these cost pressures, healthcare management needs to improve its understanding of the relevant cost drivers. Through a case study, we show how to perform a time-driven activity-based costing of five outpatient clinic's departments and provide evidence of the benefits of such an analysis.

  10. Greening reclamation of arid region

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kamichika, Makio [Tottori Univ. (Japan)

    1989-01-20

    Arid regions occupy a third of the whole land in the world, and desertification in the rimland makes a problem become more acute. It is also a problem that the large part of such areas is distributed in developing countries. Desertification is defined as a phenomenon, by which the ecological system is degenerated by the change of weather conditions and the pressure of human beings and livestock, and productivity of land is markedly deteriorated. In order to prevent desertification and to promote greening reclamation and agricultural development, it is necessary to analyze desertification mechanism in detail. Artificial factors are overpopulation, too much pasturage, and conversion of grassland into farmland. Natural environmental factors are weather conditions, water resources, soil conditions, etc. It is also important for greening reclamation and development of farm land to evaluate the amount of meteorological resources (such as water resources, energy resources, etc.) and to search for the possibility of their utilization. Because of major condition to grow plants is water environment, investigation and development of water resources are important. If a project ignores the cycle of the ecological system, it might be in danger of retrogradation toward desertification. 8 refs., 10 figs., 4 tabs.

  11. Atmospheric Constraints on the Surface UV Environment of Mars at 3.9 Ga Relevant to Prebiotic Chemistry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ranjan, Sukrit; Wordsworth, Robin; Sasselov, Dimitar D.

    2017-08-01

    Recent findings suggest that Mars may have been a clement environment for the emergence of life and may even have compared favorably to Earth in this regard. These findings have revived interest in the hypothesis that prebiotically important molecules or even nascent life may have formed on Mars and been transferred to Earth. UV light plays a key role in prebiotic chemistry. Characterizing the early martian surface UV environment is key to understanding how Mars compares to Earth as a venue for prebiotic chemistry. Here, we present two-stream, multilayer calculations of the UV surface radiance on Mars at 3.9 Ga to constrain the surface UV environment as a function of atmospheric state. We explore a wide range of atmospheric pressures, temperatures, and compositions that correspond to the diversity of martian atmospheric states consistent with available constraints. We include the effects of clouds and dust. We calculate dose rates to quantify the effect of different atmospheric states on UV-sensitive prebiotic chemistry. We find that, for normative clear-sky CO2-H2O atmospheres, the UV environment on young Mars is comparable to young Earth. This similarity is robust to moderate cloud cover; thick clouds (τcloud ≥ 100) are required to significantly affect the martian UV environment, because cloud absorption is degenerate with atmospheric CO2. On the other hand, absorption from SO2, H2S, and dust is nondegenerate with CO2, meaning that, if these constituents build up to significant levels, surface UV fluence can be suppressed. These absorbers have spectrally variable absorption, meaning that their presence affects prebiotic pathways in different ways. In particular, high SO2 environments may admit UV fluence that favors pathways conducive to abiogenesis over pathways unfavorable to it. However, better measurements of the spectral quantum yields of these pathways are required to evaluate this hypothesis definitively.

  12. Application of hyper spectral imagings techniques to study soil degradation in arid environments. (Los Monegros, Spain); Aplicacion de tecnicas hiperespectrales de imagen al estudio de la degradacion de suelos en ambientes aridos (Los Monegros, Espana)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gumuzzio Such, A.; Palacios Orueta, A.; Schmid, T.; Dominguez, J. A.; Gumuzzio, J.

    2009-07-01

    The aim of this work is to identify characteristics associated to soils affected by degradation within and arid area of Spain using optical hyper spectral airborne data. The methodological approach was developed to determine the spatial distribution of selected soils affected by degradation processes. A satisfactory spatial distribution is obtained where the corresponding soil characteristics are closely related to degradation processes. (Author) 2 refs.

  13. The Context of Military Environments: An Agenda for Basic Research on Social and Organizational Factors Relevant to Small Units

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-06-01

    internally enforced by feelings of shame or guilt, are primarily taught by parents , and so become part of the preferences of individuals. In this way...ENVIRONMENTS • What are the group or organizational antecedents of resilience such as group bonds, leadership style , and organizational values...and practices. In R.A. McMackin, E. Newman , J.M. Fogler, and T.M. Keane, Eds., Trauma Therapy in Context: The Science and Craft of Evidence-Based

  14. Sediment grain-size characteristics and relevant correlations to the aeolian environment in China's eastern desert region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Chunlai; Shen, Yaping; Li, Qing; Jia, Wenru; Li, Jiao; Wang, Xuesong

    2018-06-15

    To identify characteristics of aeolian activity and the aeolian environment in China's eastern desert region, this study collected surface sediment samples from the main desert and sandy lands in this region: the Hobq Desert and the Mu Us, Otindag, Horqin, and Hulunbuir sandy lands. We analyzed the grain-size characteristics and their relationships to three key environmental indicators: drift potential, the dune mobility index, and vegetation cover. The main sediment components are fine to medium sands, with poor (Hulunbuir) to moderate (all other areas) sorting, of unimodal to bimodal distribution. This suggests that improved sorting is accomplished by the loss of both relatively coarser and finer grains. Since 2000, China's eastern desert region has generally experienced low wind energy environmental conditions, resulting in decreased dune activity. In the Hobq Desert, however, the dry climate and sparse vegetation, in conjunction with the most widely distributed mobile dune area in the eastern desert region, have led to frequent and intense aeolian activity, including wind erosion, sand transport, and deposition, resulting in conditions for good sediment sorting. In the Mu Us, Otindag, and Horqin sandy lands, mosaic distribution has resulted from wind erosion-dominated and deposition-dominated aeolian environments. In the Hulunbuir Sandy Land, high precipitation, low temperatures, and steppe vegetation have resulted in well-developed soils; however, strong winds and flat terrain have created an aeolian environment dominated by wind erosion. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  15. Factory-discharged pharmaceuticals could be a relevant source of aquatic environment contamination: review of evidence and need for knowledge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardoso, Olivier; Porcher, Jean-Marc; Sanchez, Wilfried

    2014-11-01

    Human and veterinary active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) are involved in contamination of surface water, ground water, effluents, sediments and biota. Effluents of waste water treatment plants and hospitals are considered as major sources of such contamination. However, recent evidences reveal high concentrations of a large number of APIs in effluents from pharmaceutical factories and in receiving aquatic ecosystems. Moreover, laboratory exposures to these effluents and field experiments reveal various physiological disturbances in exposed aquatic organisms. Also, it seems to be relevant to increase knowledge on this route of contamination but also to develop specific approaches for further environmental monitoring campaigns. The present study summarizes available data related to the impact of pharmaceutical factory discharges on aquatic ecosystem contaminations and presents associated challenges for scientists and environmental managers. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Response of wheat growth, grain yield and water use to elevated CO2 under a Free-Air CO2 Enrichment (FACE) experiment and modelling in a semi-arid environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Leary, Garry J; Christy, Brendan; Nuttall, James; Huth, Neil; Cammarano, Davide; Stöckle, Claudio; Basso, Bruno; Shcherbak, Iurii; Fitzgerald, Glenn; Luo, Qunying; Farre-Codina, Immaculada; Palta, Jairo; Asseng, Senthold

    2014-12-05

    The response of wheat crops to elevated CO 2 (eCO 2 ) was measured and modelled with the Australian Grains Free-Air CO 2 Enrichment experiment, located at Horsham, Australia. Treatments included CO 2 by water, N and temperature. The location represents a semi-arid environment with a seasonal VPD of around 0.5 kPa. Over 3 years, the observed mean biomass at anthesis and grain yield ranged from 4200 to 10 200 kg ha -1 and 1600 to 3900 kg ha -1 , respectively, over various sowing times and irrigation regimes. The mean observed response to daytime eCO 2 (from 365 to 550 μmol mol -1 CO 2 ) was relatively consistent for biomass at stem elongation and at anthesis and LAI at anthesis and grain yield with 21%, 23%, 21% and 26%, respectively. Seasonal water use was decreased from 320 to 301 mm (P = 0.10) by eCO 2 , increasing water use efficiency for biomass and yield, 36% and 31%, respectively. The performance of six models (APSIM-Wheat, APSIM-Nwheat, CAT-Wheat, CROPSYST, OLEARY-CONNOR and SALUS) in simulating crop responses to eCO 2 was similar and within or close to the experimental error for accumulated biomass, yield and water use response, despite some variations in early growth and LAI. The primary mechanism of biomass accumulation via radiation use efficiency (RUE) or transpiration efficiency (TE) was not critical to define the overall response to eCO 2 . However, under irrigation, the effect of late sowing on response to eCO 2 to biomass accumulation at DC65 was substantial in the observed data (~40%), but the simulated response was smaller, ranging from 17% to 28%. Simulated response from all six models under no water or nitrogen stress showed similar response to eCO 2 under irrigation, but the differences compared to the dryland treatment were small. Further experimental work on the interactive effects of eCO 2 , water and temperature is required to resolve these model discrepancies. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  17. Facies-architecture of fossil arid siliciclastic depositional systems as outcrop analogue for Rotliegend reservoirs. Literature study; Faziesarchitektur fossiler arid-klastischer Ablagerungsraeume als Rotliegend-Reservoiranalog. Literaturstudie

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Irmen, A.

    1999-08-01

    In this project a literature-based study was carried out in order to document the facies-architecture of siliciclastic sediments from arid environments and to investigate their suitability as outcrop-analogues for the strata of the Southern Permian Basin. The report resulting from this investigation presents possible analogues and case-studies. Three Formations (Flechtingen Sandstone, Corrie Sandstone and Cedar Mesa Sandstone of the Cutler Group) are especially well suited to serve as outcrop analogue for the 'Rotliegend' Sediments of the Southern Permian Basin. Possible analogues are documented at various scales, ranging from bed-scale to formation scale. Also, special attention was paid to general trends and what factors control them. To make a comparison of Formations from different settings possible, criteria were elaborated to qualify the relevant controlling factors. The catalog itself is preceded by a comprehensive preface, that introduces to the subject and points out the connection between the primary sediment fabric and its petrophysical properties. (orig.) [German] Im Rahmen dieses DGMK Forschungsvorhabens wurde eine Literaturstudie durchgefuehrt, welche die Faziesarchitektur fossiler arid-klastischer Sedimente darstellt und auf ihre Eignung als Rotliegend-Reservoiranalog untersucht. Die vorliegende Dokumentation stellt verschiedene moegliche Analoge und Fallbeispiele dar, wobei drei Abfolgen als besonders geeignet erscheinen. Es wurden Kriterien erarbeitet, die relevante Kontrollfaktoren qualifizieren, um einen Vergleich verschiedener arid-klastischer Sedimentationsraeume zu ermoeglichen. Die Bandbreite der Darstellung moeglicher Analoge umfasst das gesamte Spektrum vom Gefuegemassstab bis hin zu genetischen Einheiten und beleuchtet die jeweiligen Steuerungsfaktoren der Ablagerung. Der eigentlichen Dokumentation wurde eine umfassende Einleitung vorangestellt, welche in die Thematik einfuehrt und Zusammenhaenge zwischen primaerem

  18. Facies-architecture of fossil arid siliciclastic depositional systems as outcrop analogue for Rotliegend reservoirs. Literature study; Faziesarchitektur fossiler arid-klastischer Ablagerungsraeume als Rotliegend-Reservoiranalog. Literaturstudie

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Irmen, A

    1999-08-01

    In this project a literature-based study was carried out in order to document the facies-architecture of siliciclastic sediments from arid environments and to investigate their suitability as outcrop-analogues for the strata of the Southern Permian Basin. The report resulting from this investigation presents possible analogues and case-studies. Three Formations (Flechtingen Sandstone, Corrie Sandstone and Cedar Mesa Sandstone of the Cutler Group) are especially well suited to serve as outcrop analogue for the 'Rotliegend' Sediments of the Southern Permian Basin. Possible analogues are documented at various scales, ranging from bed-scale to formation scale. Also, special attention was paid to general trends and what factors control them. To make a comparison of Formations from different settings possible, criteria were elaborated to qualify the relevant controlling factors. The catalog itself is preceded by a comprehensive preface, that introduces to the subject and points out the connection between the primary sediment fabric and its petrophysical properties. (orig.) [German] Im Rahmen dieses DGMK Forschungsvorhabens wurde eine Literaturstudie durchgefuehrt, welche die Faziesarchitektur fossiler arid-klastischer Sedimente darstellt und auf ihre Eignung als Rotliegend-Reservoiranalog untersucht. Die vorliegende Dokumentation stellt verschiedene moegliche Analoge und Fallbeispiele dar, wobei drei Abfolgen als besonders geeignet erscheinen. Es wurden Kriterien erarbeitet, die relevante Kontrollfaktoren qualifizieren, um einen Vergleich verschiedener arid-klastischer Sedimentationsraeume zu ermoeglichen. Die Bandbreite der Darstellung moeglicher Analoge umfasst das gesamte Spektrum vom Gefuegemassstab bis hin zu genetischen Einheiten und beleuchtet die jeweiligen Steuerungsfaktoren der Ablagerung. Der eigentlichen Dokumentation wurde eine umfassende Einleitung vorangestellt, welche in die Thematik einfuehrt und Zusammenhaenge zwischen primaerem Sedimentgefuege und

  19. Stress corrosion cracking of Ni-Fe-Cr alloys in acid sulfate environments relevant to CANDU steam generators

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Persaud, S.Y.; Carcea, A.G., E-mail: suraj.persaud@mail.utoronto.ca [Univ. of Toronto, Toronto, ON (Canada); Huang, J.; Korinek, A.; Botton, G.A. [McMaster Univ., Hamilton, ON (Canada); Newman, R.C. [Univ. of Toronto, Toronto, ON (Canada)

    2014-07-01

    Ni-Fe-Cr alloys used in nuclear plants have been found susceptible to stress corrosion cracking (SCC) in acid sulfate environments. Electrochemical measurements and SCC tests were done using Ni, Alloy 600, and Alloy 800 in acid sulfate solutions at 315 {sup o}C. Electrochemical measurements suggested that sulfate is a particularly aggressive anion in mixed chloride systems. Cracks with lengths in excess of 300 μm were present on stressed Alloy 800 samples after 60 hours. High resolution analytical electron microscopy was used to extract a crack tip from an Alloy 800 sample and draw final conclusions with respect to the mechanism of SCC. (author)

  20. Asynchronous glaciations in arid continental climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Batbaatar, Jigjidsurengiin; Gillespie, Alan R.; Fink, David; Matmon, Ari; Fujioka, Toshiyuki

    2018-02-01

    Mountain glaciers at ∼26-19 ka, during the global Last Glacial Maximum near the end of the last 105 yr glacial cycle, are commonly considered on the basis of dating and field mapping in several well-studied areas to have been the largest of the late Quaternary and to have advanced synchronously from region to region. However, a numerical sensitivity model (Rupper and Roe, 2008) predicts that the fraction of ablation due to melting varies across Central Asia in proportion to the annual precipitation. The equilibrium-line altitude of glaciers across this region likely varies accordingly: in high altitude, cold and arid regions sublimation can ablate most of the ice, whereas glaciers fed by high precipitation cannot ablate completely due to sublimation alone, but extend downhill until higher temperatures there cause them to melt. We have conducted field studies and 10Be dating at five glaciated sites along a precipitation gradient in Mongolia to test the Rupper/Roe model. The sites are located in nearby 1.875 × 1.875° cells of the Rupper/Roe model, each with a different melt fraction, in this little-studied region. The modern environment of the sites ranges from dry subhumid in the north (47.7° N) to arid in the south (45° N). Our findings show that the maximum local advances in the dry subhumid conditions predated the global Last Glacial Maximum and were likely from MIS 3. However, we also found that at ∼8-7 ka a cirque glacier in one mountain range of the arid Gobi desert grew to a magnitude comparable to that of the local maximum extent. This Holocene maximum occurred during a regional pluvial period thousands of years after the retreat of the Pleistocene glaciers globally. This asynchronous behavior is not predicted by the prevailing and generally correct presumption that glacier advances are dominantly driven by temperature, although precipitation also plays a role. Our findings are consistent with and support the Rupper/Roe model, which calls for

  1. Palaeopathology and its relevance to understanding health and disease today: the impact of the environment on health, past and present

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roberts Charlotte Ann

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available This paper considers the discipline of palaeopathology, how it has developed, how it is studied, and what limitations present challenges to analysis. The study of disease has a long history and has probably most rapidly developed over the last 40-50 years with the development of methods, and particularly ancient pathogen DNA analysis. While emphasizing that palaeopathology has close synergies to evolutionary medicine, it focuses then on three ‘case studies’ that illustrate the close interaction people have had with their environments and how that has impacted their health. Upper and lower respiratory tract disease has affected sinuses and ribs, particularly in urban contexts, and tuberculosis in particular has been an ever present disease throughout thousands of years of our existence. Ancient DNA methods are now allowing us to explore how strains of the bacteria causing TB have changed through time. Vitamin D deficiency and ‘phossy jaw’ are also described, both potentially related to polluted environments, and possibly to working conditions in the industrial period. Access to UV light is emphasized as a preventative factor for rickets and where a person lives is important (latitude. The painful stigmatizing ‘phossy jaw’ appears to be a condition related to the match making industries. Finally, thoughts for the future are outlined, and two key concerns: a close consideration of ethical issues and human remains, especially with destructive analyses, and thinking more about how palaeopathological research can impact people beyond academia.

  2. Application of Isotope techniques in the arid and semi-arid zone hydrology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gonfiantini, R.; Louvat, D.; Aranyossy, J.F.

    1993-01-01

    The paper presents a brief introduction on the scientific background of isotope hydrology,and after, explains the applications of environment isotope techniques in groundwater hydrology of the arid and semi-arid zones. It includes the study of aquifer recharge and discharge, identification of palaeorecharge, groundwater movement and age in unconfined and confined aquifers, and interconnections between aquifers. The contribution of isotopes is highlighted with many examples of field case studies, with emphasis on studies carried out with IAEA support. Finally, a short description of IAEA program on isotope hydrology is given, with a list of regional projects supported through the IAEA Technical Cooperation program, and of Coordinated Research Programs. The latter give the modern research trends in isotope application to hydrology and hydrosphere environmental studies. (author). 2 tabs., 25 figs., 69 refs

  3. Studies of Corrosion Resistant Materials Being Considered for High-Level Nuclear Waste Containment in Yucca Mountain Relevant Environments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McCright, R.D.; Ilevbare, G.; Estill, J.; Rebak, R.

    2001-01-01

    Containment of spent nuclear fuel and vitrified forms of high level nuclear waste require use of materials that are highly corrosion resistant to all of the anticipated environmental scenarios that can occur in a geological repository. Ni-Cr-Mo Alloy 22 (UNS N60622) is proposed for the corrosion resistant outer barrier of a two-layer waste package container at the potential repository site at Yucca Mountain. A range of water compositions that may contact the outer barrier is under consideration, and a testing program is underway to characterize the forms of corrosion and to quantify the corrosion rates. Results from the testing support models for long term prediction of the performance of the container. Results obtained to date indicate a very low general corrosion rate for Alloy 22 and very high resistance to all forms of localized and environmentally assisted cracking in environments tested to date

  4. Shallow Horizontal GCHP Effectiveness in Arid Climate Soils

    Science.gov (United States)

    North, Timothy James

    Ground coupled heat pumps (GCHPs) have been used successfully in many environments to improve the heating and cooling efficiency of both small and large scale buildings. In arid climate regions, such as the Phoenix, Arizona metropolitan area, where the air condi-tioning load is dominated by cooling in the summer, GCHPs are difficult to install and operate. This is because the nature of soils in arid climate regions, in that they are both dry and hot, renders them particularly ineffective at dissipating heat. The first part of this thesis addresses applying the SVHeat finite element modeling soft-ware to create a model of a GCHP system. Using real-world data from a prototype solar-water heating system coupled with a ground-source heat exchanger installed in Menlo Park, California, a relatively accurate model was created to represent a novel GCHP panel system installed in a shallow vertical trench. A sensitivity analysis was performed to evaluate the accuracy of the calibrated model. The second part of the thesis involved adapting the calibrated model to represent an ap-proximation of soil conditions in arid climate regions, using a range of thermal properties for dry soils. The effectiveness of the GCHP in the arid climate region model was then evaluated by comparing the thermal flux from the panel into the subsurface profile to that of the prototype GCHP. It was shown that soils in arid climate regions are particularly inefficient at heat dissipation, but that it is highly dependent on the thermal conductivity inputted into the model. This demonstrates the importance of proper site characterization in arid climate regions. Finally, several soil improvement methods were researched to evaluate their potential for use in improving the effectiveness of shallow horizontal GCHP systems in arid climate regions.

  5. Enriched environment decreases microglia and brain macrophages inflammatory phenotypes through adiponectin-dependent mechanisms: Relevance to depressive-like behavior.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chabry, Joëlle; Nicolas, Sarah; Cazareth, Julie; Murris, Emilie; Guyon, Alice; Glaichenhaus, Nicolas; Heurteaux, Catherine; Petit-Paitel, Agnès

    2015-11-01

    Regulation of neuroinflammation by glial cells plays a major role in the pathophysiology of major depression. While astrocyte involvement has been well described, the role of microglia is still elusive. Recently, we have shown that Adiponectin (ApN) plays a crucial role in the anxiolytic/antidepressant neurogenesis-independent effects of enriched environment (EE) in mice; however its mechanisms of action within the brain remain unknown. Here, we show that in a murine model of depression induced by chronic corticosterone administration, the hippocampus and the hypothalamus display increased levels of inflammatory cytokines mRNA, which is reversed by EE housing. By combining flow cytometry, cell sorting and q-PCR, we show that microglia from depressive-like mice adopt a pro-inflammatory phenotype characterized by higher expression levels of IL-1β, IL-6, TNF-α and IκB-α mRNAs. EE housing blocks pro-inflammatory cytokine gene induction and promotes arginase 1 mRNA expression in brain-sorted microglia, indicating that EE favors an anti-inflammatory activation state. We show that microglia and brain-macrophages from corticosterone-treated mice adopt differential expression profiles for CCR2, MHC class II and IL-4recα surface markers depending on whether the mice are kept in standard environment or EE. Interestingly, the effects of EE were abolished when cells are isolated from ApN knock-out mouse brains. When injected intra-cerebroventricularly, ApN, whose level is specifically increased in cerebrospinal fluid of depressive mice raised in EE, rescues microglia phenotype, reduces pro-inflammatory cytokine production by microglia and blocks depressive-like behavior in corticosterone-treated mice. Our data suggest that EE-induced ApN increase within the brain regulates microglia and brain macrophages phenotype and activation state, thus reducing neuroinflammation and depressive-like behaviors in mice. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Selected physicochemical aspects of poly- and perfluoroalkylated substances relevant to performance, environment and sustainability-part one.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krafft, Marie Pierre; Riess, Jean G

    2015-06-01

    The elemental characteristics of the fluorine atom tell us that replacing an alkyl chain by a perfluoroalkyl or polyfluorinated chain in a molecule or polymer is consequential. A brief reminder about perfluoroalkyl chains, fluorocarbons and fluorosurfactants is provided. The outstanding, otherwise unattainable physicochemical properties and combinations thereof of poly and perfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) are outlined, including extreme hydrophobic and lipophobic character; thermal and chemical stability in extreme conditions; remarkable aptitude to self-assemble into sturdy thin repellent protecting films; unique spreading, dispersing, emulsifying, anti-adhesive and levelling, dielectric, piezoelectric and optical properties, leading to numerous industrial and technical uses and consumer products. It was eventually discovered, however, that PFASs with seven or more carbon-long perfluoroalkyl chains had disseminated in air, water, soil and biota worldwide, are persistent in the environment and bioaccumulative in animals and humans, raising serious health and environmental concerns. Further use of long-chain PFASs is environmentally not sustainable. Most leading manufacturers have turned to shorter four to six carbon perfluoroalkyl chain products that are not considered bioaccumulative. However, many of the key performances of PFASs decrease sharply when fluorinated chains become shorter. Fluorosurfactants become less effective and less efficient, provide lesser barrier film stability, etc. On the other hand, they remain as persistent in the environment as their longer chain homologues. Surprisingly little data (with considerable discrepancies) is accessible on the physicochemical properties of the PFASs under examination, a situation that requires consideration and rectification. Such data are needed for understanding the environmental and in vivo behaviour of PFASs. They should help determine which, for which uses, and to what extent, PFASs are environmentally

  7. Influence of copper ions on the viability and cytotoxicity of Pseudomonas aeruginosa under conditions relevant to drinking water environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dwidjosiswojo, Zenyta; Richard, Jessica; Moritz, Miriam M; Dopp, Elke; Flemming, Hans-Curt; Wingender, Jost

    2011-11-01

    Copper plumbing materials can be the source of copper ions in drinking water supplies. The aim of the current study was to investigate the influence of copper ions on the viability and cytotoxicity of the potential pathogen Pseudomonas aeruginosa that presents a health hazard when occurring in building plumbing systems. In batch experiments, exposure of P. aeruginosa (10(6)cells/mL) for 24h at 20°C to copper-containing drinking water from domestic plumbing systems resulted in a loss of culturability, while total cell numbers determined microscopically did not decrease. Addition of the chelator diethyldithiocarbamate (DDTC) to copper-containing water prevented the loss of culturability. When suspended in deionized water with added copper sulfate (10 μM), the culturability of P. aeruginosa decreased by more than 6 log units, while total cell counts, the concentration of cells with intact cytoplasmic membranes, determined with the LIVE/DEAD BacLight kit, and the number of cells with intact 16S ribosomal RNA, determined by fluorescent in situ hybridization, remained unchanged. When the chelator DDTC was added to copper-stressed bacteria, complete restoration of culturability was observed to occur within 14 d. Copper-stressed bacteria were not cytotoxic towards Chinese hamster ovary (CHO-9) cells, while untreated and resuscitated bacteria caused an almost complete decrease of the concentration of viable CHO-9 cells within 24 h. Thus, copper ions in concentrations relevant to drinking water in plumbing systems seem to induce a viable but non-culturable (VBNC) state in P. aeruginosa accompanied by a loss of culturability and cytotoxicity, and VBNC cells can regain both culturability and cytotoxicity, when copper stress is abolished. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier GmbH. All rights reserved.

  8. Insight into the Local Solvent Environment of Biologically Relevant Iron-nitroysl Systems through Two-Dimensional Infrared Spectroscopy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brookes, Jennifer Faith

    Iron-nitrosyl systems, particularly in the form of heme proteins, with their iron metal active sites play an important role in biological systems. Heme proteins act as storage, transporters, and receptors for nitric oxide (NO), a signaling molecule that is important in immune, nervous, and cardiovascular systems of mammals. By better understanding the local environment of the active site of NO binding heme proteins we can gain insight into disease in which the NO pathways have been implicated. This is an important step to being able to develop pharmaceuticals targeting NO pathways in humans. Sodium nitroprusside ((SNP, Na2[Fe(CN)5is NO]·2H 2O) investigated as a model system for the active site of nitric oxide binding heme proteins. Using two-dimensional infrared spectroscopy (2D IR) to obtain dephasing dynamics of the nitrosyl stretch (nuNO) in a series of solvents we are able to better understand the local environment of the more complicated metalloproteins. Rigorous line shape analysis is performed by using nonlinear response theory to simulate 2D IR spectra which are then fit to experimental data in an iterative process to extract frequency-frequency correlation functions (FFCFs). The time scales obtained are then correlated to empirical solvent polarity parameters. The analysis of the 2D IR lineshapes reveal that the spectral diffusion timescale of the nuNO in SNP varies from 0.8 -- 4 ps and is negatively correlated with the empirical solvent polarity scales. We continue to investigate NO binding of metalloproteins through 2D IR experiments on nitrophorin 4 (NP4). NP4 is a pH-sensitive NO transporter protein present in the salivary gland of the blood sucking insect Rhodius prolixus which undergoes a pH sensitive structural change between a closed and open conformation allowing for the storage and delivery of NO. The two structures are observed spectroscopically as two distinct pH-dependent nu NO frequencies at ~1904 and ~1917 cm-1. We obtain FFCFs by globally

  9. Precision Viticulture : is it relevant to manage the vineyard according to the within field spatial variability of the environment ?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tisseyre, Bruno

    2015-04-01

    For more than 15 years, research projects are conducted in the precision viticulture (PV) area around the world. These research projects have provided new insights into the within-field variability in viticulture. Indeed, access to high spatial resolution data (remote sensing, embedded sensors, etc.) changes the knowledge we have of the fields in viticulture. In particular, the field which was until now considered as a homogeneous management unit, presents actually a high spatial variability in terms of yield, vigour an quality. This knowledge will lead (and is already causing) changes on how to manage the vineyard and the quality of the harvest at the within field scale. From the experimental results obtained in various countries of the world, the goal of the presentation is to provide figures on: - the spatial variability of the main parameters (yield, vigor, quality), and how this variability is organized spatially, - the temporal stability of the observed spatial variability and the potential link with environmental parameters like soil, topography, soil water availability, etc. - information sources available at a high spatial resolution conventionally used in precision agriculture likely to highlight this spatial variability (multi-spectral images, soil electrical conductivity, etc.) and the limitations that these information sources are likely to present in viticulture. Several strategies are currently being developed to take into account the within field variability in viticulture. They are based on the development of specific equipments, sensors, actuators and site specific strategies with the aim of adapting the vineyard operations at the within-field level. These strategies will be presented briefly in two ways : - Site specific operations (fertilization, pruning, thinning, irrigation, etc.) in order to counteract the effects of the environment and to obtain a final product with a controlled and consistent wine quality, - Differential harvesting with the

  10. Gardens on the Arid Climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eka Saputra, Weldy

    2017-12-01

    Bahrain is located in the climate of the arid zone which rainfall is low and irregular. This paper discusses the approaches which response to the local context that has been implemented by the government of Bahrain to sustain the quality of the public garden in the arid climate, turning to green. Generally, the approach is an improvement in the central treatment of waste water system plant that used to irrigate the landscaping, agriculture as well as for industry use. These approaches are not the only technologically, but also involves the participation of community to achieve sustainable garden in this country.

  11. Spectral mixture analysis (SMA and change vector analysis (CVA methods for monitoring and mapping land degradation/desertification in arid and semiarid areas (Sudan, using Landsat imagery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Abdelrahim A.M. Salih

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available The severe Sahel catastrophe in 1968–1974 as well as repeated famines and food shortage that have hit many African countries during the 1970s have highlighted the need for further research concerning land degradation and environmental monitoring in arid and semi-arid areas. Land degradation, and desertification processes in arid and semi-arid environment were increased in the last four decades, especially in the developing countries like Sudan. To test to what extent remote sensing and geographical information science (GIS methodologies and techniques could be used for monitoring changes in arid and semi-arid regions and environment, these methodologies have long been suggested as a time and cost-efficient method. In this frame, spectral Mixture Analysis (SMA, Object-based oriented classification (Segmentation, and Change Vector Analysis are recently much recommended as a most suitable method for monitoring and mapping land cover changes in arid and semi-arid environment. Therefor the aim of this study is to use these methods and techniques for environmental monitoring with emphasis on desertification and to find model that can describe and map the status and rate of desertification processes and land cover changes in semi-arid areas in White Nile State (Sudan by using multi-temporal imagery of the Landsat satellite TM (1987, TM (2000, and ETM+ (2014 respectively. The paper also discusses and evaluates the efficiency of the adapted methodologies in monitoring the land degradation processes and changes in the arid and semi-arid regions.

  12. Radioactive waste isolation in arid zones

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nativ, R.

    1991-01-01

    Arid zones are currently considered ideal sites for the isolation of radioactive and other hazardous wastes. Because arid zones have low precipitation, other hydrological features such as minimal surface water, low recharge rates, small hydraulic gradients, deep water table and lower water quality are also inferred. These premises have proved to be misleading in many circumstances, resulting in groundwater contamination by radionuclides. Case studies indicating surface water damages, occurrence of active recharge, groundwater flow and considerable discharge of potable water in arid and hyper-arid terrains, as well as the possibility of future climatic changes, require careful hydrological assessment of proposed sites in arid areas. (author)

  13. Gaze Behavior in a Natural Environment with a Task-Relevant Distractor: How the Presence of a Goalkeeper Distracts the Penalty Taker

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Johannes Kurz

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Gaze behavior in natural scenes has been shown to be influenced not only by top–down factors such as task demands and action goals but also by bottom–up factors such as stimulus salience and scene context. Whereas gaze behavior in the context of static pictures emphasizes spatial accuracy, gazing in natural scenes seems to rely more on where to direct the gaze involving both anticipative components and an evaluation of ongoing actions. Not much is known about gaze behavior in far-aiming tasks in which multiple task-relevant targets and distractors compete for the allocation of visual attention via gaze. In the present study, we examined gaze behavior in the far-aiming task of taking a soccer penalty. This task contains a proximal target, the ball; a distal target, an empty location within the goal; and a salient distractor, the goalkeeper. Our aim was to investigate where participants direct their gaze in a natural environment with multiple potential fixation targets that differ in task relevance and salience. Results showed that the early phase of the run-up seems to be driven by both the salience of the stimulus setting and the need to perform a spatial calibration of the environment. The late run-up, in contrast, seems to be controlled by attentional demands of the task with penalty takers having habitualized a visual routine that is not disrupted by external influences (e.g., the goalkeeper. In addition, when trying to shoot a ball as accurately as possible, penalty takers directed their gaze toward the ball in order to achieve optimal foot-ball contact. These results indicate that whether gaze is driven by salience of the stimulus setting or by attentional demands depends on the phase of the actual task.

  14. Comments on: The moisture from the air as water resource in arid region: hopes, doubt and facts

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Beysens, D.; Milimouk, I.; Nikolayev, V.; Berkowicz, S.M.; Muselli, M.; Heusinkveld, B.G.; Jacobs, A.F.G.

    2006-01-01

    Kogan and Trahtman [2003. The moisture from the air as water resource in arid region: hopes, doubts and facts. Journal of Arid Environments 53, 231¿240] analysed the functioning of a passive dew condenser built by F.I. Zibold in 1912 in Feodosia, and proposed a model to explain how thousands of

  15. Analysis and evaluation of tillage on an alfisol in a semi-arid tropical region of India

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Klaij, M.C.

    1983-01-01

    Tillage field experiments were conducted on Alfisols in a semi-arid tropical environment in India. The research was conducted within the framework of the Farming Systems Research Program of the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT).

    To put the

  16. Tropical Warm Semi-Arid Regions Expanding Over Temperate Latitudes In The Projected 21st Century

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rajaud, A.; de Noblet, N. I.

    2015-12-01

    Two billion people today live in drylands, where extreme climatic conditions prevail, and natural resources are limited. Drylands are expected to expand under several scenarios of climatic change. However, relevant adaptation strategies need to account for the aridity level: it conditions the equilibrium tree-cover density, ranging from deserts (hyper-arid) to dense savannas (sub-humid). Here we focus on the evolution of climatically defined warm semi-arid areas, where low-tree density covers can be maintained. We study the global repartition of these regions in the future and the bioclimatic shifts involved. We adopted a bioclimatological approach based on the Köppen climate classification. The warm semi-arid class is characterized by mean annual temperatures over 18°C and a rainfall-limitation criterion. A multi-model ensemble of CMIP5 projections for three representative concentration pathways was selected to analyze future conditions. The classification was first applied to the start, middle and end of the 20th and 21st centuries, in order to localize past and future warm semi-arid regions. Then, time-series for the classification were built to characterize trends and variability in the evolution of those regions. According to the CRU datasets, global expansion of the warm semi-arid area has already started (~+13%), following the global warming trend since the 1900s. This will continue according to all projections, most significantly so outside the tropical belt. Under the "business as usual" scenario, the global warm semi-arid area will increase by 30% and expand 12° poleward in the Northern Hemisphere, according to the multi-model mean. Drying drives the conversion from equatorial sub-humid conditions. Beyond 30° of latitude, cold semi-arid conditions become warm semi-arid through warming, and temperate conditions through combined warming and drying processes. Those various transitions may have drastic but also very distinct ecological and sociological

  17. Adaptation of metabolism and evaporative water loss along an aridity gradient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tieleman, B Irene; Williams, Joseph B; Bloomer, Paulette

    2003-01-22

    Broad-scale comparisons of birds indicate the possibility of adaptive modification of basal metabolic rate (BMR) and total evaporative water loss (TEWL) in species from desert environments, but these might be confounded by phylogeny or phenotypic plasticity. This study relates variation in avian BMR and TEWL to a continuously varying measure of environment, aridity. We test the hypotheses that BMR and TEWL are reduced along an aridity gradient within the lark family (Alaudidae), and investigate the role of phylogenetic inertia. For 12 species of lark, BMR and TEWL decreased along a gradient of increasing aridity, a finding consistent with our proposals. We constructed a phylogeny for 22 species of lark based on sequences of two mitochondrial genes, and investigated whether phylogenetic affinity played a part in the correlation of phenotype and environment. A test for serial independence of the data for mass-corrected TEWL and aridity showed no influence of phylogeny on our findings. However, we did discover a significant phylogenetic effect in mass-corrected data for BMR, a result attributable to common phylogenetic history or to common ecological factors. A test of the relationship between BMR and aridity using phylogenetic independent constrasts was consistent with our previous analysis: BMR decreased with increasing aridity.

  18. New developments in the techniques of uranium exploration in Egypt. Case histories for exploration under arid conditions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    El-Shazly, E.M.; Meshref, W.M.; Ammar, A.A.; El-Ghawaby, M.A.; El-Kassas, I.A.; El-Rakaiby, M.M.

    1977-01-01

    Exploration for radioactive mineralizations and mineral accumulations in Egypt during the last five years involved the application of new techniques and their adaptation to the prevailing semi-arid to arid environment. The mobilization of uranium and thorium, and their daughter products in the oxidation zone, is greatly influenced by this particular environment. Exploration techniques employed include the use of airborne, space-borne, ground and sub-surface methodologies. Case histories for uranium exploration have been formulated through practical experience, which can be applied in the arid regions in different parts of the world where conditions are comparable to those of Egypt. (author)

  19. Characteristics of the volatile organic compounds -- Arid Integrated Demonstration Site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Last, G.V.; Lenhard, R.J.; Bjornstad, B.N.; Evans, J.C.; Roberson, K.R.; Spane, F.A.; Amonette, J.E.; Rockhold, M.L.

    1991-10-01

    The Volatile Organic Compounds -- Arid Integrated Demonstration Program (VOC-Arid ID) is targeted at demonstration and testing of technologies for the evaluation and cleanup of volatile organic compounds and associated contaminants at arid DOE sites. The initial demonstration site is an area of carbon tetrachloride (CCl 4 ) contamination located near the center of the Hanford Site. The movement of CCl 4 and other volatile organic contaminants in the subsurface is very complex. The problem at the Hanford Site is further complicated by the concurrent discharge of other waste constituents including acids, lard oil, organic phosphates, and transuranic radionuclides. In addition, the subsurface environment is very complex, with large spatial variabilities in hydraulic properties. A thorough understanding of the problem is essential to the selection of appropriate containment, retrieval, and/or in situ remedial technologies. The effectiveness of remedial technologies depends on knowing where the contaminants are, how they are held up in a given physical and chemical subsurface environment; and knowing the physical, chemical, and microbiological changes that are induced by the various remedial technologies

  20. ELECTRON-CAPTURE AND β-DECAY RATES FOR sd-SHELL NUCLEI IN STELLAR ENVIRONMENTS RELEVANT TO HIGH-DENSITY O–NE–MG CORES

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Suzuki, Toshio [Department of Physics and Graduate School of Integrated Basic Sciences, College of Humanities and Sciences, Nihon University Sakurajosui 3-25-40, Setagaya-ku, Tokyo 156-8550 (Japan); Toki, Hiroshi [Research Center for Nuclear Physics (RCNP), Osaka University, Ibaraki, Osaka 567-0047 (Japan); Nomoto, Ken’ichi, E-mail: suzuki@phys.chs.nihon-u.ac.jp [Kavli Institute for the Physics and Mathematics of the Universe (WPI), The University of Tokyo, Kashiwa, Chiba 277-8583 (Japan)

    2016-02-01

    Electron-capture and β-decay rates for nuclear pairs in the sd-shell are evaluated at high densities and high temperatures relevant to the final evolution of electron-degenerate O–Ne–Mg cores of stars with initial masses of 8–10 M{sub ⊙}. Electron capture induces a rapid contraction of the electron-degenerate O–Ne–Mg core. The outcome of rapid contraction depends on the evolutionary changes in the central density and temperature, which are determined by the competing processes of contraction, cooling, and heating. The fate of the stars is determined by these competitions, whether they end up with electron-capture supernovae or Fe core-collapse supernovae. Since the competing processes are induced by electron capture and β-decay, the accurate weak rates are crucially important. The rates are obtained for pairs with A = 20, 23, 24, 25, and 27 by shell-model calculations in the sd-shell with the USDB Hamiltonian. Effects of Coulomb corrections on the rates are evaluated. The rates for pairs with A = 23 and 25 are important for nuclear Urca processes that determine the cooling rate of the O–Ne–Mg core, while those for pairs with A = 20 and 24 are important for the core contraction and heat generation rates in the core. We provide these nuclear rates at stellar environments in tables with fine enough meshes at various densities and temperatures for studies of astrophysical processes sensitive to the rates. In particular, the accurate rate tables are crucially important for the final fates of not only O–Ne–Mg cores but also a wider range of stars, such as C–O cores of lower-mass stars.

  1. ELECTRON-CAPTURE AND β-DECAY RATES FOR sd-SHELL NUCLEI IN STELLAR ENVIRONMENTS RELEVANT TO HIGH-DENSITY O–NE–MG CORES

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Suzuki, Toshio; Toki, Hiroshi; Nomoto, Ken’ichi

    2016-01-01

    Electron-capture and β-decay rates for nuclear pairs in the sd-shell are evaluated at high densities and high temperatures relevant to the final evolution of electron-degenerate O–Ne–Mg cores of stars with initial masses of 8–10 M ⊙ . Electron capture induces a rapid contraction of the electron-degenerate O–Ne–Mg core. The outcome of rapid contraction depends on the evolutionary changes in the central density and temperature, which are determined by the competing processes of contraction, cooling, and heating. The fate of the stars is determined by these competitions, whether they end up with electron-capture supernovae or Fe core-collapse supernovae. Since the competing processes are induced by electron capture and β-decay, the accurate weak rates are crucially important. The rates are obtained for pairs with A = 20, 23, 24, 25, and 27 by shell-model calculations in the sd-shell with the USDB Hamiltonian. Effects of Coulomb corrections on the rates are evaluated. The rates for pairs with A = 23 and 25 are important for nuclear Urca processes that determine the cooling rate of the O–Ne–Mg core, while those for pairs with A = 20 and 24 are important for the core contraction and heat generation rates in the core. We provide these nuclear rates at stellar environments in tables with fine enough meshes at various densities and temperatures for studies of astrophysical processes sensitive to the rates. In particular, the accurate rate tables are crucially important for the final fates of not only O–Ne–Mg cores but also a wider range of stars, such as C–O cores of lower-mass stars

  2. Modelling dynamic water redistribution patterns in arid catchments in the Negev Desert of Israel

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Buis, E.; Veldkamp, A.

    2008-01-01

    In arid climate regions, redistribution of runoff water is highly relevant for vegetation development. The process of water redistribution at catchment scale is studied with the landscape process model LAPSUS, mainly used for erosion and sedimentation modelling. LAPSUS, formerly applied in

  3. Hydrological Response of Semi-arid Degraded Catchments in Tigray, Northern Ethiopia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teka, Daniel; Van Wesemael, Bas; Vanacker, Veerle; Hallet, Vincent

    2013-04-01

    To address water scarcity in the arid and semi-arid part of developing countries, accurate estimation of surface runoff is an essential task. In semi-arid catchments runoff data are scarce and therefore runoff estimation using hydrological models becomes an alternative. This research was initiated in order to characterize runoff response of semi-arid catchments in Tigray, North Ethiopia to evaluate SCS-CN for various catchments. Ten sub-catchments were selected in different river basins and rainfall and runoff were measured with automatic hydro-monitoring equipments for 2-3 years. The Curve Number was estimated for each Hydrological Response Unit (HRU) in the sub-catchments and runoff was modeled using the SCS-CN method at λ = 0.05 and λ = 0.20. The result showed a significant difference between the two abstraction ratios (P =0.05, df = 1, n= 132) and reasonable good result was obtained for predicted runoff at λ = 0.05 (NSE = -0.69; PBIAS = 18.1%). When using the CN values from literature runoff was overestimated compared to the measured value (e= -11.53). This research showed the importance of using measured runoff data to characterize semi-arid catchments and accurately estimate the scarce water resource. Key words: Hydrological response, rainfall-runoff, degraded environments, semi-arid, Ethiopia, Tigray

  4. Elaboração de um sistema de classificação da capacidade de suporte em ambiente semi-árido Elaboration of a classification system of support capacity in the semi-arid environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Márcio R. Francelino

    2005-03-01

    Full Text Available Esta pesquisa foi realizada com o objetivo de identificar a relação de colonos assentados em projetos de reforma agrária no Rio Grande do Norte, com os recursos naturais das suas respectivas áreas e, posteriormente, elaborar um sistema de classificação de suporte do meio físico. Para isto, foram selecionados dez projetos de assentamento na região oeste do estado, caracterizada por regime de semi-aridez, abrangendo uma área de cerca de 30.000 ha, em que se buscou identificar parâmetros qualitativos e quantitativos dos recursos edáficos, florestais e hídricos de cada área, sempre os relacionando com o seu tipo de uso. Verificou-se que todos os assentamentos apresentaram número de colonos superior ao limite que o ambiente poderia suportar, demonstrando a necessidade de se reavaliar o tamanho do módulo agrícola adotado para essas áreas, como também a necessidade da oferta satisfatória de água, que propicia melhor exploração do potencial agrícola dos solos da região, diminuindo a pressão sobre os recursos florestais.This work aimed as general objective, to identify the farmers of the Settlement Projects of Agricultural Reform in the State of Rio Grande do Norte, with the natural resources of their respective areas and later to elaborate a system of classification of support capacity of the ambient. For the purpose, ten Settlement Projects were selected in the western part of the state, characterized by semi-arid regime in an area of 30.000 ha where qualitative and quantitative parameters of the soil where edalfo, forest and water resources were identified. It was verified that all Settlement Projects presented number of settlers more than the ambient could support, demonstrating the need to reevaluate the size of the agricultural module adopted in these areas, as well as the satisfactory offer of water which allows better exploration of the agricultural potential of the soils of the area, thereby decreasing the pressure on

  5. Deposition, accumulation, and alteration of Cl−, NO3−, ClO4− and ClO3− salts in a hyper-arid polar environment: Mass balance and isotopic constraints

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, Andrew; Davila, Alfonso F.; Böhlke, John Karl; Sturchio, Neil C.; Sevanthi, Ritesh; Estrada, Nubia; Brundrett, Maeghan; Lacelle, Denis; McKay, Christopher P.; Poghosyan, Armen; Pollard, Wayne; Zacny, Kris

    2016-01-01

    The salt fraction in permafrost soils/sediments of the McMurdo Dry Valleys (MDV) of Antarctica can be used as a proxy for cold desert geochemical processes and paleoclimate reconstruction. Previous analyses of the salt fraction in MDV permafrost soils have largely been conducted in coastal regions where permafrost soils are variably affected by aqueous processes and mixed inputs from marine and stratospheric sources. We expand upon this work by evaluating permafrost soil/sediments in University Valley, located in the ultraxerous zone where both liquid water transport and marine influences are minimal. We determined the abundances of Cl−, NO3−, ClO4− and ClO3− in dry and ice-cemented soil/sediments, snow and glacier ice, and also characterized Cl− and NO3−isotopically. The data are not consistent with salt deposition in a sublimation till, nor with nuclear weapon testing fall-out, and instead point to a dominantly stratospheric source and to varying degrees of post depositional transformation depending on the substrate, from minimal alteration in bare soils to significant alteration (photodegradation and/or volatilization) in snow and glacier ice. Ionic abundances in the dry permafrost layer indicate limited vertical transport under the current climate conditions, likely due to percolation of snowmelt. Subtle changes in ClO4−/NO3− ratios and NO3− isotopic composition with depth and location may reflect both transport related fractionation and depositional history. Low molar ratios of ClO3−/ClO4− in surface soils compared to deposition and other arid systems suggest significant post depositional loss of ClO3−, possibly due to reduction by iron minerals, which may have important implications for oxy-chlorine species on Mars. Salt accumulation varies with distance along the valley and apparent accumulation times based on multiple methods range from ∼10 to 30 kyr near the glacier to 70–200 kyr near the valley mouth. The relatively young age

  6. Deposition, Accumulation, and Alteration of Cl(-), NO3(-), ClO4(-) and ClO3(-) Salts in a Hyper-Arid Polar Environment: Mass Balance and Isotopic Constraints

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, Andrew; Davila, Alfonso F.; Boehlke, J. K.; Sturchio, Neil C.; Sevanthi, Ritesh; Estrada, Nubia; Brundrette, Megan; Lacell, Denis; McKay, Christopher P.; Poghosyan, Armen; hide

    2016-01-01

    The salt fraction in permafrost soils/sediments of the McMurdo Dry Valleys (MDV) of Antarctica can be used as a proxy for cold desert geochemical processes and paleoclimate reconstruction. Previous analyses of the salt fraction in MDV permafrost soils have largely been conducted in coastal regions where permafrost soils are variably affected by aqueous processes and mixed inputs from marine and stratospheric sources. We expand upon this work by evaluating permafrost soil/sediments in University Valley, located in the ultraxerous zone where both liquid water transport and marine influences are minimal. We determined the abundances of Cl(-), NO3(-, ClO4(-)and ClO3(-)in dry and ice-cemented soil/sediments, snow and glacier ice, and also characterized Cl(-) and NO3(-) isotopically. The data are not consistent with salt deposition in a sublimation till, nor with nuclear weapon testing fall-out, and instead point to a dominantly stratospheric source and to varying degrees of post depositional transformation depending on the substrate, from minimal alteration in bare soils to significant alteration (photodegradation and/or volatilization) in snow and glacier ice. Ionic abundances in the dry permafrost layer indicate limited vertical transport under the current climate conditions, likely due to percolation of snowmelt. Subtle changes in ClO4(-)/NO3(-) ratios and NO3(-) isotopic composition with depth and location may reflect both transport related fractionation and depositional history. Low molar ratios of ClO3(-)/ClO4(-) in surface soils compared to deposition and other arid systems suggest significant post depositional loss of ClO3(-), possibly due to reduction by iron minerals, which may have important implications for oxy-chlorine species on Mars. Salt accumulation varies with distance along the valley and apparent accumulation times based on multiple methods range from approximately 10 to 30 kyr near the glacier to 70-200 kyr near the valley mouth. The relatively

  7. Discussion groups with parents of children with cerebral palsy in Europe designed to assist development of a relevant measure of environment

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    McManus, V; Michelsen, S I; Parkinson, K

    2006-01-01

    BACKGROUND: An instrument to measure environmental factors relevant to physically impaired children is being developed in a European context. Preliminary work in England had identified some potentially important themes. Further inquiry was needed to identify issues important in other European...

  8. Apparent over-investment in leaf venation relaxes leaf morphological constraints on photosynthesis in arid habitats

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Boer, Hugo; Drake, Paul; Veneklaas, Erik

    2017-04-01

    The close relationship between leaf water status and stomatal conductance implies that the hydraulic architecture of leaves poses an important constraint on transpiration, specifically in arid environments with high evaporative demands. However, it remains uncertain how morphological, hydraulic and photosynthetic traits are coordinated to achieve optimal leaf functioning in arid environments. Critical is that leaf veins supply the mesophyll with water that evaporates when stomata are open to allow CO2 uptake for photosynthesis. Theoretical analyses suggest that water is optimally distributed in the mesophyll when the lateral distance between veins (dx) is equal to the distance from these veins to the epidermis (dy), expressed as dx:dy≈1. Although this theory is supported by observations on many derived angiosperms, we hypothesize that plants in arid environments may reduce dx:dy below unity owing to climate-specific functional adaptations of increased leaf thickness and increased vein density. To test our hypothesis we assembled leaf hydraulic, morphological and photosynthetic traits of 68 species from the Eucalyptus and Corymbia genera (termed eucalypts) along an aridity gradient in southwestern Australia. We inferred the potential gas exchange advantage of reducing dx beyond dy using a model that links leaf morphology and hydraulics to photosynthesis. Our observations reveal that eucalypts in arid environments have thick amphistomatous leaves with high vein densities, resulting in dx:dy ratios that range from 1.6 to 0.15 along the aridity gradient. Our model suggests that as leaves become thicker, the effect of reducing dx beyond dy is to offset the reduction in leaf gas exchange that would result from maintaining dx:dy at unity. This apparent over-investment in leaf venation may be explained from the selective pressure of aridity, under which traits associated with long leaf lifespan, high hydraulic and thermal capacitances, and high potential rates of leaf

  9. Water conservation for semi-arid rangelands

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Willis, W.O.

    1983-01-01

    Water deficiency is most often the cause for low forage production on rangelands in semi-arid and arid regions. Water conservation methods have been developed but additional research is needed to develop the best management practices for various climatic regions. Poor management is another major cause of low rangeland production. Better management, including the application of research findings, depends on attitudes, policies, adaptability of findings, resources for implementation and a good understanding of the governing biotic and abiotic factors. (author)

  10. Environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    McIntyre, A.D.; Turnbull, R.G.H.

    1992-01-01

    The development of the hydrocarbon resources of the North Sea has resulted in both offshore and onshore environmental repercussions, involving the existing physical attributes of the sea and seabed, the coastline and adjoining land. The social and economic repercussions of the industry were equally widespread. The dramatic and speedy impact of the exploration and exploitation of the northern North Sea resources in the early 1970s, on the physical resources of Scotland was quickly realised together with the concern that any environmental and social damage to the physical and social fabric should be kept to a minimum. To this end, a wide range of research and other activities by central and local government, and other interested agencies was undertaken to extend existing knowledge on the marine and terrestrial environments that might be affected by the oil and gas industry. The outcome of these activities is summarized in this paper. The topics covered include a survey of the marine ecosystems of the North Sea, the fishing industry, the impact of oil pollution on seabirds and fish stocks, the ecology of the Scottish coastline and the impact of the petroleum industry on a selection of particular sites. (author)

  11. Relevance of a Healthy Change Process and Psychosocial Work Environment Factors in Predicting Stress, Health Complaints, and Commitment Among Employees in a Ghanaian Bank

    OpenAIRE

    Quaye, Emmanuel

    2010-01-01

    This thesis was intended to examine the effect of the healthiness of change process and psychosocial work environment factors in predicting job stress, health complaints and commitment among employees in a Ghanaian bank (N=132), undergoing organizational change. The change process was measured in terms of dimensions from the Healthy Change Process Index (HCPI) and the psychosocial work environment was measured by the Demands-Control-Support (DCS) model. Hierarchical regression analyses reveal...

  12. Evaluating rainwater harvesting systems in arid and semi-arid regions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ammar, Adham Ali

    2017-01-01

    Rainwater harvesting (RWH) is an ancient traditional technology practised in many parts of the world, especially in arid and semi-arid regions (ASARs). ASARs represent 40% of the earth’s land surface and are characterised by low average annual rainfall and uneven temporal and spatial

  13. Development of hardy sorghum cultivars for the arid and semi arid ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Development of hardy sorghum cultivars for the arid and semi arid regions. MN Makobe, EM Kahangi, AK Misra, MO Imbuga. Abstract. No Abstract. Full Text: EMAIL FREE FULL TEXT EMAIL FREE FULL TEXT · DOWNLOAD FULL TEXT DOWNLOAD FULL TEXT · AJOL African Journals Online. HOW TO USE AJOL.

  14. Human response and adaptation to drought in the arid zone: lessons from southern Africa

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    O'Farrell, PJ

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available . Grassl. Soc. S. Afr. 8, 126–130. 7. Wilhite D.A. and Glantz M.H. (1985). Understanding the drought phenome- non: the role of definitions. Water Int. 10(3), 111–120. 8. Le Houerou H.N. (1996). Climate change, drought and desertification. J. Arid....E. and Tainton N.M. (1996). Range management: optimising forage production and quality. Bull. Grassl. Soc. S. Afr. 7 (1), 36–43. 13. Scoones I. (1992). Coping with drought – responses of herders and livestock in contrasting savanna environments in southern...

  15. Is annual recharge coefficient a valid concept in arid and semi-arid regions?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Y. Cheng

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Deep soil recharge (DSR (at depth greater than 200 cm is an important part of water circulation in arid and semi-arid regions. Quantitative monitoring of DSR is of great importance to assess water resources and to study water balance in arid and semi-arid regions. This study used a typical bare land on the eastern margin of Mu Us Sandy Land in the Ordos Basin of China as an example to illustrate a new lysimeter method of measuring DSR to examine if the annual recharge coefficient is valid or not in the study site, where the annual recharge efficient is the ratio of annual DSR over annual total precipitation. Positioning monitoring was done on precipitation and DSR measurements underneath mobile sand dunes from 2013 to 2015 in the study area. Results showed that use of an annual recharge coefficient for estimating DSR in bare sand land in arid and semi-arid regions is questionable and could lead to considerable errors. It appeared that DSR in those regions was influenced by precipitation pattern and was closely correlated with spontaneous strong precipitation events (with precipitation greater than 10 mm other than the total precipitation. This study showed that as much as 42 % of precipitation in a single strong precipitation event can be transformed into DSR. During the observation period, the maximum annual DSR could make up 24.33 % of the annual precipitation. This study provided a reliable method of estimating DSR in sandy areas of arid and semi-arid regions, which is valuable for managing groundwater resources and ecological restoration in those regions. It also provided strong evidence that the annual recharge coefficient was invalid for calculating DSR in arid and semi-arid regions. This study shows that DSR is closely related to the strong precipitation events, rather than to the average annual precipitation, as well as the precipitation patterns.

  16. Meaningful traits for grouping plant species across arid ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bär Lamas, Marlene Ivonne; Carrera, A L; Bertiller, M B

    2016-05-01

    Grouping species may provide some degree of simplification to understand the ecological function of plants on key ecosystem processes. We asked whether groups of plant species based on morpho-chemical traits associated with plant persistence and stress/disturbance resistance reflect dominant plant growth forms in arid ecosystems. We selected twelve sites across an aridity gradient in northern Patagonia. At each site, we identified modal size plants of each dominant species and assessed specific leaf area (SLA), plant height, seed mass, N and soluble phenol concentration in green and senesced leaves at each plant. Plant species were grouped according with plant growth forms (perennial grasses, evergreen shrubs and deciduous shrubs) and plant morphological and/or chemical traits using cluster analysis. We calculated mean values of each plant trait for each species group and plant growth form. Plant growth forms significantly differed among them in most of the morpho-chemical traits. Evergreen shrubs were tall plants with the highest seed mass and soluble phenols in leaves, deciduous shrubs were also tall plants with high SLA and the highest N in leaves, and perennial grasses were short plants with high SLA and low concentration of N and soluble phenols in leaves. Grouping species by the combination of morpho-chemical traits yielded 4 groups in which species from one growth form prevailed. These species groups differed in soluble phenol concentration in senesced leaves and plant height. These traits were highly correlated. We concluded that (1) plant height is a relevant synthetic variable, (2) growth forms adequately summarize ecological strategies of species in arid ecosystems, and (3) the inclusion of plant morphological and chemical traits related to defenses against environmental stresses and herbivory enhanced the potential of species grouping, particularly within shrubby growth forms.

  17. A review of research on ecosystem of arid area using RS-GIS in China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Hongling

    2007-06-01

    Arid area is classical mountain-oasis-desert ecosystem in North-west China. As the ecosystem has its nature geography character obviously, it has superior to research with remote-sensing and geography information system. The study on arid ecosystem in RS-GIS' way is focused on that the landscape spatial pattern of complex MODS ecosystem, the dynamic development of Land use/land cover, the security of ecological environment of eco-tone and so on. At the same time, the research on the single system is more and more, which has provided more ways and deeper fields of arid area using RS-GIS. Through the use of RS-GIS, desertification, oasis' development, urbanization etc. can be known, which would provide precaution for human-being and suitable ways to adjust the problems.

  18. Large-scale hydrological modelling in the semi-arid north-east of Brazil

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Guentner, A

    2002-09-01

    Semi-arid areas are characterized by small water resources. An increasing water demand due to population growth and economic development as well as a possible decreasing water availability in the course of climate change may aggravate water scarcity in future in these areas. The quantitative assessment of the water resources is a prerequisite for the development of sustainable measures of water management. For this task, hydrological models within a dynamic integrated framework are indispensable tools. The main objective of this study is to develop a hydrological model for the quantification of water availability over a large geographic domain of semi-arid environments. The study area is the Federal State of Ceara in the semi-arid north-east of Brazil. Surface water from reservoirs provides the largest part of water supply. The area has recurrently been affected by droughts which caused serious economic losses and social impacts like migration from the rural regions. (orig.)

  19. FY1995 high techniques of measuring for sensation, cognition arid behavior in the man-products-environment interface; 1995 nendo seihin kankyo interface ni okeru kankaku ninchi kodo keisoku kodoka ni kansuru kenkyu

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1997-03-01

    We measure the distribution of activation locus of brain cortex area and its time-sequence against various kinds of stimulus by using the fMRI that can visualize directly brain activities. Next, we try to make a simulation model of the information processing system of brain, and aim at establishment of new evaluation index for environment-human interface based objectively or quantitatively on brain activity data. we challenged to examining quantitatively brain activities by using functional MRI instrumentation technique. We made a effort to acquire functional MRI technique by repetition of pilot studies, and were successful in visualization of visual cortex (primary sensory area). In the latter period, sensory areas whose function had not been studied sufficiently and higher functional areas of brain which related to memory, attention and emotion were studied. The identification of action locus of gustatory area was tried using functional MRI studies. In studies about the ability of spatial attention, experiments elucidating locus participating in space perception and attention and its function were advanced. It was suggested that activation locus of brain was different between a color-form matched stimulus and a mismatched stimulus. The MRI measurement added the information of musculoskeletal system to the current analysis of human body configuration and gesture character, and a more detailed analysis of human body became possible. This is, an useful analysis was suggested by a plan of shoes pattern. (NEDO)

  20. MONITORING CANOPY AND AIR TEMPERATURE OF DOMINANT VEGETATION IN TROPICAL SEMI-ARID USING BIOCLIMATIC MODEL

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Josiclêda Domiciano Galvíncio

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available Typical vegetation of arid environments consist of few dominant species highly threatened by climate change. Jurema preta (Mimosa tenuiflora (Willd. Poiret is one of these successful species that now is dominant in extensive semiarid areas in the world. The development of a simple bioclimatic model using climate change scenarios based on optimistic and pessimistic predictions of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC shown as a simple tool to predict possible responses of dominant species under dry land conditions and low functional biodiversity. The simple bioclimatic model proved satisfactory in creating climate change scenarios and impacts on the canopy temperature of Jurema preta in semiarid Brazil. The bioclimatic model was efficient to obtain spatially relevant estimations of air temperature from determinations of the surface temperature using satellite images. The model determined that the average difference of 5oC between the air temperature and the leaf temperature for Jurema preta, and an increase of 3oC in air temperature, promote an increase of 2oC in leaf temperature. It lead to disturbances in vital physiological mechanisms in the leaf, mainly the photosynthesis and efficient use of water.

  1. Recommended Species for Vegetative Stabilization of Training Lands in Arid and Semi-Arid Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    1985-09-01

    bitterbrush Purshia glandulosa Apache plume Fallugia paradoxa Arizona fesce Festuca arizonica Ashe juniper Juniperus ashei Australian saltbush Atriplex...elm Ulmus crassifolia *Cheatgrass Bromus tectorum -Chinkapin oak Quercus muhlenbergii Cholla Opuntia, spp. * Cicer milkvetch Astragalus cicer Clovers...Linum lewisii Little bluestem Schizachyrium scoparium *Littleleaf palo verde Cercidium microphyllum *Live oak Quercus virginiana Lovegrasses Eragrostis

  2. Attribute Analysis of Aridity Variability in North Xinjiang, China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yanfeng Wu

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Identifying the dominant meteorological factors affecting aridity variability can improve our understanding of climate change and its future trend in arid and semiarid regions. This study investigated the spatiotemporal aridity variability in North Xinjiang, China, from 1961 to 2013, based on the UNESCO aridity index (precipitation/potential evapotranspiration, and analyzed its association with meteorological factors. The results suggest that North Xinjiang is becoming more humid with an increasing trend in aridity index. Precipitation, temperature, and relative humidity have positive correlation with aridity, and evapotranspiration, sunshine hours, and wind speed have negative correlation with aridity. Wind speed and sunshine hours have a higher sensitivity and more contribution to aridity. This study provides an understanding of the effect of recent climate change on drought in northwest China.

  3. Mitigating Climate Change in the Arid Lands of Namibia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schneider, Martin B.; Sorensen, Marten

    2014-05-01

    Mitigating Climate Change in the Arid Lands of Namibia Namibia is the most arid country south of the Sahara, with scarce rainfall and perennial rivers only at its borders, > 80% of the area relies solely on groundwater. This has had devastating economic effects limiting opportunities for sustainable rural livelihoods that keep the population majority living below the World Bank poverty line (IFAD, 2013). A primary example of climatic variability which affects agrarian productivity is increased bush encroachment of Namibia's arid grazing land. The result has been a severe biodiversity loss, increased desertification and diminished water-use efficiency and underground water tables. Given these factors, Namibia's arid lands provide a unique opportunity to assess and test innovative / appropriate adaptation and mitigation strategies. Working toward sustainable management, restoration, and maintenance of balanced, resilient arid ecosystems in Namibia will also be a means to support and expand economic sectors incl. opportunities for job creation and potentially provide a model for similar arid regions. Main vegetation zones are: desert (46%), savannah (37%), and dry woodlands and forests (17%), i.e. management strategies currently used by rural communities. 2. Capture and assess cultural and gender dimensions of management strategies within stakeholder groups using participatory approaches. 3. Determine science-based alternatives for adaptive land management strategies and test their acceptability to local communities and within the current policy framework. 4. Integrate identified indigenous knowledge with appropriate science and new emerging technologies to develop a training toolkit of effective strategies relevant to all stakeholders. 5. Utilize training sessions, education workshops, curriculum revisions, and appropriate information and communication technologies (ICTs) including social media outlets to disseminate the toolkit strategies. 6. Apply a modified logic

  4. Aspectos docentes sobre medio ambiente urbano y sustentabilidad: su importancia actual. /Educational aspects of the urban environment and sustainability: its relevance today.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fadda,Giulietta

    1999-12-01

    Full Text Available Se refiere por qué Chile no se puede incluir entre los países con mayor tradición ambientalista y cómo el modelo económico que le ha valido prestigiosas consideraciones internacionales ha representado un alto costo ambiental y ha provocado daños irreparables al medio ambiente./ It argues the need for a training course at university level in the field of environment and sustainability, and attempts a definition of the components of the course.

  5. Concentrations of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in central air-conditioner filter dust and relevance of non-dietary exposure in occupational indoor environments in Greece.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Besis, Athanasios; Katsoyiannis, Athanasios; Botsaropoulou, Elisavet; Samara, Constantini

    2014-05-01

    Polybrominated Diphenyl Ethers (PBDEs) are ubiquitous in the indoor environment owing to their use in consumer products and various studies around the world have found higher concentrations indoors than outdoors. Central air conditioner (A/C) systems have been widely used in many workplaces, therefore, studying of PBDEs in central A/C filter dust is useful to better understand the occurrences and health implications of PBDEs in indoor environments. The present study examined the occurrence of PBDEs in central A/C filter dust collected from various workplaces (n = 20) in Thessaloniki, Greece. The sum concentrations of 21 target congeners (∑21PBDE) in A/C dust ranged between 84 and 4062 ng g(-1) with a median value of 1092 ng g(-1), while BDE-209 was found to be the most abundant BDE congener. The daily intake via dust ingestion of PBDEs estimated for the employees of the occupational settings ranged from 3 to 45 ng day(-1) (median 12 ng day(-1)). Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Molecular environment of stable iodine and radioiodine (129I) in natural organic matter: Evidence inferred from NMR and binding experiments at environmentally relevant concentrations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Chen; Zhong, Junyan; Hatcher, Patrick G.; Zhang, Saijin; Li, Hsiu-Ping; Ho, Yi-Fang; Schwehr, Kathleen A.; Kaplan, Daniel I.; Roberts, Kimberly A.; Brinkmeyer, Robin; Yeager, Chris M.; Santschi, Peter H.

    2012-11-01

    129I is a major by-product of nuclear fission and had become one of the major radiation risk drivers at Department of Energy (DOE) sites. 129I is present at elevated levels in the surface soils of the Savannah River Site (SRS) F-Area and was found to be bound predominantly to soil organic matter (SOM). Naturally bound 127I and 129I to sequentially extracted humic acids (HAs), fulvic acids (FAs) and a water extractable colloid (WEC) were measured in a 129I-contaminated wetland surface soil located on the SRS. WEC is a predominantly colloidal organic fraction obtained from soil re-suspension experiments to mimic the fraction that may be released during groundwater exfiltration, storm water or surface runoff events. For the first time, NMR techniques were applied to infer the molecular environment of naturally occurring stable iodine and radioiodine binding to SOM. Iodine uptake partitioning coefficients (Kd) by these SOM samples at ambient iodine concentrations were also measured and related to quantitative structural analyses by 13C DPMAS NMR and solution state 1H NMR on the eight humic acid fractions. By assessing the molecular environment of iodine, it was found that it was closely associated with the aromatic regions containing esterified products of phenolic and formic acids or other aliphatic carboxylic acids, amide functionalities, quinone-like structures activated by electron-donating groups (e.g., NH2), or a hemicellulose-lignin-like complex with phenyl-glycosidic linkages. However, FAs and WEC contained much greater concentrations of 127I or 129I than HAs. The contrasting radioiodine contents among the three different types of SOM (HAs, FAs and WEC) suggest that the iodine binding environment cannot be explained solely by the difference in the amount of their reactive binding sites. Instead, indirect evidence indicates that the macro-molecular conformation, such as the hydrophobic aliphatic periphery hindering the active aromatic cores and the hydrophilic

  7. Concentrations of polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in central air-conditioner filter dust and relevance of non-dietary exposure in occupational indoor environments in Greece

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Besis, Athanasios; Katsoyiannis, Athanasios; Botsaropoulou, Elisavet; Samara, Constantini

    2014-01-01

    Polybrominated Diphenyl Ethers (PBDEs) are ubiquitous in the indoor environment owing to their use in consumer products and various studies around the world have found higher concentrations indoors than outdoors. Central air conditioner (A/C) systems have been widely used in many workplaces, therefore, studying of PBDEs in central A/C filter dust is useful to better understand the occurrences and health implications of PBDEs in indoor environments. The present study examined the occurrence of PBDEs in central A/C filter dust collected from various workplaces (n = 20) in Thessaloniki, Greece. The sum concentrations of 21 target congeners (∑ 21 PBDE) in A/C dust ranged between 84 and 4062 ng g −1 with a median value of 1092 ng g −1 , while BDE-209 was found to be the most abundant BDE congener. The daily intake via dust ingestion of PBDEs estimated for the employees of the occupational settings ranged from 3 to 45 ng day −1 (median 12 ng day −1 ). - Highlights: • PBDEs were investigated in dust of A/C filters in occupational settings in Thessaloniki, Greece. • BDE-209 was found to be the most abundant BDE congener. • High levels of PBDEs were found in a newspaper building, internet cafes and electronic shops. • PBDEs were attributable to the extensive presence and/or usage of electronic devices. • Exposure of employees to PBDEs via indoor dust ingestion was estimated at 12 ng day −1 . - PBDEs were for the first time measured in dust from central A/C filters in workplaces of Greece and their concentrations were used to estimate the non-dietary human exposure

  8. Isotope techniques in water resource investigations in arid and semi-arid regions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2001-03-01

    The Co-ordinated Research Project (CRP) on the Use of Isotope Techniques in Water Resources Investigations in Arid and Semi-arid Regions was initiated with the aim od contributing to the assessment of groundwater resources in arid areas through the use of environmental isotope techniques, and thereby to help in better management of these valuable fresh groundwater resources. The main emphases identified were in three key areas: (i) the evaluation of water balance components such as recharge rate estimation and recharge and discharge cycles at different spatial scales, (ii) paleohydrology and hydroclimatic change and, (iii) anthropogenic impacts and the assessment of the vulnerability of arid zone ground waters to salinisation and pollution impacts. This publication presents individual projects carried out within the frameworks of the CRP. Each paper has been indexed separately

  9. Temporal variations of isotopes in arid rain storms

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Adar, E.M.; Dodi, A.; Geyh, M.A.; Yair, A.

    1999-01-01

    The distribution of isotopes in rainfall has long been used to elaborate on hydrological systems. Both isotopic composition of stable isotopes (oxygen-18 and deuterium) and tritium content are used to illuminate on sources of groundwater recharge and as tracers upon which groundwater fluxes are assessed. As runoff is concerned, stable isotopes have been used to identify flow paths and the precise location of the rain storm which produced the floods. Analyses of stable isotopes in arid storms in the Negev desert revealed clear discrepancy between the spatial isotopic composition in floods versus the spatial and temporal isotopic composition in rainfall. In addition, simple water balance revealed that the entire flood volume is equivalent to a very small portion of the rain storm, suggesting that a specific flood is produced by a very short and intensive portion of the rainfall. Therefore, knowledge of the weighted isotopic average of a rainfall can not serve as an adequate input function for modeling of desert floods. Since in arid environment, floods are considered as major source of groundwater recharge it also can not be used as input function for modeling of groundwater systems. This paper summarizes detailed isotopic study of short segments (∼2 mm each) of desert rainstorms as sampled in the Negev desert, Israel

  10. Aridity and decomposition processes in complex landscapes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ossola, Alessandro; Nyman, Petter

    2015-04-01

    Decomposition of organic matter is a key biogeochemical process contributing to nutrient cycles, carbon fluxes and soil development. The activity of decomposers depends on microclimate, with temperature and rainfall being major drivers. In complex terrain the fine-scale variation in microclimate (and hence water availability) as a result of slope orientation is caused by differences in incoming radiation and surface temperature. Aridity, measured as the long-term balance between net radiation and rainfall, is a metric that can be used to represent variations in water availability within the landscape. Since aridity metrics can be obtained at fine spatial scales, they could theoretically be used to investigate how decomposition processes vary across complex landscapes. In this study, four research sites were selected in tall open sclerophyll forest along a aridity gradient (Budyko dryness index ranging from 1.56 -2.22) where microclimate, litter moisture and soil moisture were monitored continuously for one year. Litter bags were packed to estimate decomposition rates (k) using leaves of a tree species not present in the study area (Eucalyptus globulus) in order to avoid home-field advantage effects. Litter mass loss was measured to assess the activity of macro-decomposers (6mm litter bag mesh size), meso-decomposers (1 mm mesh), microbes above-ground (0.2 mm mesh) and microbes below-ground (2 cm depth, 0.2 mm mesh). Four replicates for each set of bags were installed at each site and bags were collected at 1, 2, 4, 7 and 12 months since installation. We first tested whether differences in microclimate due to slope orientation have significant effects on decomposition processes. Then the dryness index was related to decomposition rates to evaluate if small-scale variation in decomposition can be predicted using readily available information on rainfall and radiation. Decomposition rates (k), calculated fitting single pool negative exponential models, generally

  11. Arid and semiarid land stewardship: A 10-year review of accomplishments and contributions of the lnternational Arid Lands Consortium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peter F. Ffolliott; Jeffrey O. Dawson; James T. Fisher; Itshack Moshe; Darrell W. DeBoers; Timothy. E. Fulbright; John Tracy; Abdullah Al Musa; Carter Johnson; Jim P. M. Chamie

    2001-01-01

    The International Arid Lands Consortium (IALC) was established in 1990 to promote research, education, and training activities related to the development, management, and restoration or reclamation of arid and semiarid lands worldwide. The IALC, a leading international organization, supports ecological sustainability and development of arid and semiarid lands. Building...

  12. CHARACTERISTICS OF ARIDITY CONDITIONS IN SOUTH DOBRUDJA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. TISCOVSCHI

    2013-04-01

    Full Text Available Characteristics of Aridity Conditions in South Dobrudja. For most people, the arid and semi-arid lands are those where precipitation is low (less than 200 mm per year, and yet enough for supplying streams capable of temporarily carrying the debris resulted from weathering, but insufficient for encouraging the development of a vegetal cover meant to protect the soil blanket against eroding agents. The drought is a major and permanent climatic risk for the Dobrudja territory as a whole and for South Dobrudja in particular, a territory where hydrographic network is underdeveloped, streams are ephemeral, and semi-endorheic areas are well developed. When the period of moisture deficiency lasts longer, it can bring about a significant water imbalance, which results in crop losses or restrictions in water consumption, thus leading to a number of economic problems. Under the circumstances, the risk of aridity expansion is significant, this being the reason why a better water management system in Romania is urgently needed. In the last decades, the numerous specialty studies undertaken in the area have emphasized an intensification of the process of dryness, because atmospheric and pedological droughts have become more and more serious. Romania is a member of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO. It actively participates within the drought management network and the Drought Management Center for Southeastern Europe, which comprises 11 countries. The scope is to work together and exchange experience with the neighboring countries that have recorded positive results and acquired a rich experience in terms of drought management. The employment of appropriate pluvial indices in identifying the areas prone to aridity may prove to be convenient tool for finding practical solutions meant to mitigate the impact of this phenomenon on the local communities living in South Dobrudja.

  13. Aridity under conditions of increased CO2

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greve, Peter; Roderick, Micheal L.; Seneviratne, Sonia I.

    2016-04-01

    A string of recent of studies led to the wide-held assumption that aridity will increase under conditions of increasing atmospheric CO2 concentrations and associated global warming. Such results generally build upon analyses of changes in the 'aridity index' (the ratio of potential evaporation to precipitation) and can be described as a direct thermodynamic effect on atmospheric water demand due to increasing temperatures. However, there is widespread evidence that contradicts the 'warmer is more arid' interpretation, leading to the 'global aridity paradox' (Roderick et al. 2015, WRR). Here we provide a comprehensive assessment of modeled changes in a broad set of dryness metrics (primarily based on a range of measures of water availability) over a large range of realistic atmospheric CO2 concentrations. We use an ensemble of simulations from of state-of-the-art climate models to analyse both equilibrium climate experiments and transient historical simulations and future projections. Our results show that dryness is, under conditions of increasing atmospheric CO2 concentrations and related global warming, generally decreasing at global scales. At regional scales we do, however, identify areas that undergo changes towards drier conditions, located primarily in subtropical climate regions and the Amazon Basin. Nonetheless, the majority of regions, especially in tropical and mid- to northern high latitudes areas, display wetting conditions in a warming world. Our results contradict previous findings and highlight the need to comprehensively assess all aspects of changes in hydroclimatological conditions at the land surface. Roderick, M. L., P. Greve, and G. D. Farquhar (2015), On the assessment of aridity with changes in atmospheric CO2, Water Resour. Res., 51, 5450-5463

  14. Li depletion effects on Li2TiO3 reaction with H2 in thermo-chemical environment relevant to breeding blanket for fusion power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Alvani, Carlo; Casadio, Sergio; Contini, Vittoria; Giorgi, Rossella; Mancini, Maria Rita; Tsuchiya, Kunihiko; Kawamura, Hiroshi

    2005-07-01

    This is a report of the Working Group in the Subtask on Solid Breeder Blankets under the Implementing Agreement on a Co-operative Programme on Nuclear Technology of Fusion Reactors (International Energy Agency (IEA)). This Working Group (Task F and WG-F) was performed from 2000 to 2004 by a collaboration of European Union (EU) and Japan (JA). In this report, lithium depletion effects on the reaction of lithium titanate (Li 2 TiO 3 ) with hydrogen (H 2 ) in thermo-chemical environment were discussed. The reaction of Li 2 TiO 3 ceramics with H 2 was studied in a thermo-chemical environment simulating (excepting irradiation) that of the hottest pebble-bed zone of breeding-blanket actually designed for fusion power plants. This 'reduction' as performed at 900degC in Ar+0.1%H, purge gas (He+0.1%H 2 being the designed reference') was found to be enhanced by TiO 2 doping of the specimens of simulate 6 Li-burn-up expected to reach 20% at their end-of-life. The reaction rates, however, were so slow to be not significantly extrapolated to the breeder material service time (years). In Ar+3%H 2 , faster reaction rates allowed a better identification of the process evolution (kinetics) by Temperature-Programmed Reduction' (TPR) and 'Oxidation' (TPO), and combined TG-DTA thermal analysis. The reduction of pure Li 4/5 TiO 12/5 spinel phase to Li 4/5 TiO 12/5-y was found to reach in one day the steady state at the O-vacancy concentration y=0.2. Complimentary microscopy (SEM) and spectroscopy (XRD, XPS) techniques were used to characterize the reaction products among which the presence of the orthorhombic Li v TiO 2 (0 ≤ v ≤ 1/2) and Li 2 TiO 3 could be diagnosed. So that the complete spinel reduction to Li 1/2 TiO 2 was obtained according to a scheme involving the Li 1/2 TiO 2 -Li 4/5 TiO 12/5 spinel phase solid solution for which y=3v/(10-5v). The reduction rate of pure meta-titanate to Li 2 TiO 3-x was found much lower (x approx. = 0.01) and even possibly due to the presence

  15. Qualitative soil moisture assessment in semi-arid Africa - the role of experience and training on inter-rater reliability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rinderer, M.; Komakech, H. C.; Müller, D.; Wiesenberg, G. L. B.; Seibert, J.

    2015-08-01

    Soil and water management is particularly relevant in semi-arid regions to enhance agricultural productivity. During periods of water scarcity, soil moisture differences are important indicators of the soil water deficit and are traditionally used for allocating water resources among farmers of a village community. Here we present a simple, inexpensive soil wetness classification scheme based on qualitative indicators which one can see or touch on the soil surface. It incorporates the local farmers' knowledge on the best soil moisture conditions for seeding and brick making in the semi-arid environment of the study site near Arusha, Tanzania. The scheme was tested twice in 2014 with farmers, students and experts (April: 40 persons, June: 25 persons) for inter-rater reliability, bias of individuals and functional relation between qualitative and quantitative soil moisture values. During the test in April farmers assigned the same wetness class in 46 % of all cases, while students and experts agreed on about 60 % of all cases. Students who had been trained in how to apply the method gained higher inter-rater reliability than their colleagues with only a basic introduction. When repeating the test in June, participants were given improved instructions, organized in small subgroups, which resulted in a higher inter-rater reliability among farmers. In 66 % of all classifications, farmers assigned the same wetness class and the spread of class assignments was smaller. This study demonstrates that a wetness classification scheme based on qualitative indicators is a robust tool and can be applied successfully regardless of experience in crop growing and education level when an in-depth introduction and training is provided. The use of a simple and clear layout of the assessment form is important for reliable wetness class assignments.

  16. Qualitative soil moisture assessment in semi-arid Africa: the role of experience and training on inter-rater reliability

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rinderer, M.; Komakech, H.; Müller, D.; Seibert, J.

    2015-03-01

    Soil and water management is particularly relevant in semi-arid regions to enhance agricultural productivity. During periods of water scarcity soil moisture differences are important indicators of the soil water deficit and are traditionally used for allocating water resources among farmers of a village community. Here we present a simple, inexpensive soil wetness classification scheme based on qualitative indicators which one can see or touch on the soil surface. It incorporates the local farmers' knowledge on the best soil moisture conditions for seeding and brick making in the semi-arid environment of the study site near Arusha, Tanzania. The scheme was tested twice in 2014 with farmers, students and experts (April: 40 persons, June: 25 persons) for inter-rater reliability, bias of individuals and functional relation between qualitative and quantitative soil moisture values. During the test in April farmers assigned the same wetness class in 46% of all cases while students and experts agreed in about 60% of all cases. Students who had been trained in how to apply the method gained higher inter-rater reliability than their colleagues with only a basic introduction. When repeating the test in June, participants were given improved instructions, organized in small sub-groups, which resulted in a higher inter-rater reliability among farmers. In 66% of all classifications farmers assigned the same wetness class and the spread of class assignments was smaller. This study demonstrates that a wetness classification scheme based on qualitative indicators is a robust tool and can be applied successfully regardless of experience in crop growing and education level when an in-depth introduction and training is provided. The use of a simple and clear layout of the assessment form is important for reliable wetness class assignments.

  17. Isolation of microalgae species from arid environments and ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    sunny t

    2015-05-06

    May 6, 2015 ... biomass) and could be purified on agar plates were selected for further studies. ... open access under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0 ... cellulosic materials are also being explored in search of.

  18. Soil and water science in an arid environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hillel, D.

    1974-01-01

    Nuclear technology plays an important part in the study and development of the soil/water interaction. Tracing and measuring techniques using radioisotopes are vital tools in the elucidation of flows and processes, in order to produce the required knowledge. On the other end of the scale, it will be desalination plants tied to nuclear reactors which will become important in producing sweet water in volume, and at an acceptable cost. Valuable work in both these directions is being furthered by the IAEA, and by governmental and academic research centres in Israel. (author)

  19. Physiological adjustments to arid and mesic environments in larks (Alaudidae)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tieleman, BI; Williams, JB; Buschur, ME

    2002-01-01

    Because deserts are characterized by low food availability, high ambient temperature extremes, and absence of drinking water, one might expect that birds that live in these conditions exhibit a lower basal metabolic rate ( BMR), reduced total evaporative water loss (TEWL), and greater ability to

  20. Do Red Edge and Texture Attributes from High-Resolution Satellite Data Improve Wood Volume Estimation in a Semi-Arid Mountainous Region?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Schumacher, Paul; Mislimshoeva, Bunafsha; Brenning, Alexander

    2016-01-01

    to overcome this issue. However, clear recommendations on the suitability of specific proxies to provide accurate biomass information in semi-arid to arid environments are still lacking. This study contributes to the understanding of using multispectral high-resolution satellite data (RapidEye), specifically...... red edge and texture attributes, to estimate wood volume in semi-arid ecosystems characterized by scarce vegetation. LASSO (Least Absolute Shrinkage and Selection Operator) and random forest were used as predictive models relating in situ-measured aboveground standing wood volume to satellite data...

  1. Apparent Overinvestment in Leaf Venation Relaxes Leaf Morphological Constraints on Photosynthesis in Arid Habitats1[OPEN

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Boer, Hugo J.; Drake, Paul L.; Wendt, Erin; Price, Charles A.; Schulze, Ernst-Detlef; Turner, Neil C.; Nicolle, Dean

    2016-01-01

    Leaf veins supply the mesophyll with water that evaporates when stomata are open to allow CO2 uptake for photosynthesis. Theoretical analyses suggest that water is optimally distributed in the mesophyll when the lateral distance between veins (dx) is equal to the distance from these veins to the epidermis (dy), expressed as dx:dy ≈ 1. Although this theory is supported by observations of many derived angiosperms, we hypothesize that plants in arid environments may reduce dx:dy below unity owing to climate-specific functional adaptations of increased leaf thickness and increased vein density. To test our hypothesis, we assembled leaf hydraulic, morphological, and photosynthetic traits of 68 species from the Eucalyptus and Corymbia genera (termed eucalypts) along an aridity gradient in southwestern Australia. We inferred the potential gas-exchange advantage of reducing dx beyond dy using a model that links leaf morphology and hydraulics to photosynthesis. Our observations reveal that eucalypts in arid environments have thick amphistomatous leaves with high vein densities, resulting in dx:dy ratios that range from 1.6 to 0.15 along the aridity gradient. Our model suggests that, as leaves become thicker, the effect of reducing dx beyond dy is to offset the reduction in leaf gas exchange that would result from maintaining dx:dy at unity. This apparent overinvestment in leaf venation may be explained from the selective pressure of aridity, under which traits associated with long leaf life span, high hydraulic and thermal capacitances, and high potential rates of leaf water transport confer a competitive advantage. PMID:27784769

  2. The Impact of Urban Development in the Arid Zone and its Management.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gat, J. R.

    2002-05-01

    From the experience in humid and semi-arid settings, the immediate impact of urbanization on the hydrological system is the interference with the natural direct infiltration pathways, resulting in a decrease of groundwater recharge as well as the possibility of surface flooding. In contrast, in the arid environment the limited rain amounts and number of rain events makes the contribution of rain of marginal importance in the city's water balance. The major impact of urbanization in the arid zone is the continuous excess of discharge of treated or untreated sewage or water spills, originating from the import of water to the city's water supply. Their effect can be advantageous if properly channeled. On the other hand, the polluting potential of these water excesses as well as the possibility of mobilizing stored salinity in the downstream locations is of concern, if the natural drainage network and its remediation capacity becomes overloaded. Further, since the arid zone hydrological cycle depends naturally on a discontinuous and episodal groundwater recharge pattern, the new situation requires the re-assessment of the eco-hydrological patterns in the downstream location.

  3. VOCs in Arid soils: Technology summary

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1994-02-01

    The Volatile Organic Compounds In Arid Soils Integrated Demonstration (VOC-Arid ID) focuses on technologies to clean up volatile organic compounds and associated contaminants in soil and groundwater at arid sites. The initial host site is the 200 West Area at DOE's Hanford site in southeastern Washington state. The primary VOC contaminant is carbon tetrachloride, in association with heavy metals and radionuclides. An estimated 580--920 metric tons of carbon tetrachloride were disposed of between 1955 and 1973, resulting in extensive soil and groundwater contamination. The VOC-Arid ID schedule has been divided into three phases of implementation. The phased approach provides for: rapid transfer of technologies to the Environmental Restoration (EM-40) programs once demonstrated; logical progression in the complexity of demonstrations based on improved understanding of the VOC problem; and leveraging of the host site EM-40 activities to reduce the overall cost of the demonstrations. During FY92 and FY93, the primary technology demonstrations within the ID were leveraged with an ongoing expedited response action at the Hanford 200 West Area, which is directed at vapor extraction of VOCs from the vadose (unsaturated) zone. Demonstration efforts are underway in the areas of subsurface characterization including: drilling and access improvements, off-gas and borehole monitoring of vadose zone VOC concentrations to aid in soil vapor extraction performance evaluation, and treatment of VOC-contaminated off-gas. These current demonstration efforts constitute Phase 1 of the ID and, because of the ongoing vadose zone ERA, can result in immediate transfer of successful technologies to EM-40

  4. Cereals for the semi-arid tropics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    De Wet, J.M.J.

    1989-01-01

    The region of semi-arid tropics is the most famine prone area of the world. This region with nearly one billion people extends across some 20 million square kilometres. Major domesticated cereals adapted to semi-arid regions are sorghum (Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench), foxtail millet (Setaria italica (L.) P. Beauv.) and pearl millet (Pennisetum glaucum (L.) R. Br.). Several minor cereals are grown as speciality crops, or harvested in the wild in times of severe drought and scarcity. Important in the African Sahel are the fonios Digitaria iburua Stapf, D. exilis (Kapist) Stapf and Brachiaria deflexa (Schumach). C.E. Hubbard. These species are aggressive colonizers and are commonly encouraged as weeds in cultivated fields. Sown genotypes differ from their close wild relatives primarily in the lack of efficient natural seed dispersal. The fonios lend themselves to rapid domestication. Several wild cereals extend well beyond the limits of agriculture into the Sahara. Commonly harvested are the perennial Stipagrostis pungens and Panicum turgidum, and the annual Cenchrus biflorus (kram-kram). Kram-kram yields well under extreme heat and drought stress, and holds promise as a domesticated cereal. Sauwi millet (Panicum sonorum) is promising cereal in arid northwestern Mexico. (author). 31 refs

  5. In vitro antagonistic activity, plant growth promoting traits and phylogenetic affiliation of rhizobacteria associated with wild plants grown in arid soil

    OpenAIRE

    El-Sayed, Wael S.; Akhkha, Abdellah; El-Naggar, Moustafa Y.; Elbadry, Medhat

    2014-01-01

    The role of plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) in adaptation of plants in extreme environments is not yet completely understood. For this study native bacteria were isolated from rhizospeheric arid soils and evaluated for both growth-promoting abilities and antagonistic potential against phytopathogenic fungi and nematodes. The phylogentic affiliation of these representative isolates was also characterized. Rhizobacteria associated with 11 wild plant species from the arid soil of Alm...

  6. La réhabilitation des terres arides de Baringo au Kenya | CRDI ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    9 févr. 2011 ... Lorsque le personnel de la fiducie de bienfaisance Rehabilitation of Arid Environments (RAE) a entendu parler d'un taureau qui mangeait des cactus, il l'a acheté pour l'amener dans le district afin qu'il montre aux bovins affamés comment eux aussi pouvaient se nourrir de ces plantes grasses, une fois que ...

  7. Mineralogical controls on the weathering characteristics of arid continental deposits of the Colorado Plateau

    OpenAIRE

    Tunheim, Ragnhild Johanne

    2015-01-01

    The Permian to Jurassic stratigraphy of the Colorado Plateau includes a number of units that were deposited under arid depositional conditions. These units each show distinctive weathering characteristics which cannot solely be attributed to variation in depositional environment or burial history. The stratigraphic units are the Permian Cutler Formation, the Triassic Chinle Formation, the Jurassic Wingate Sandstone, the Kayenta Formation, the Navajo Sandstone, the Slickrock Member and the Moa...

  8. Arid-site remedial action technology development at the Los Alamos National Laboratory

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    DePoorter, G.L.

    1981-01-01

    The program goal is to design and field test methods that could be used to correct actual or anticipated problems with a closed SLB site in an arid environment. These problems might include, but are not restricted to, contaminant uptake by plants and animals, surface water infiltration, surface erosion by wind or water, subsidence, and the upward migration of radionuclides due to moisture cycling. This paper describes the moisture cycling experiment and the work planned for FY 1982

  9. Comparison and suitability of genotype by environment analysis ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Pearl millet (Pennisetum glaucum (L.) R. Br.) is an important food security and income crop for households living in semi-arid zones in Uganda. However, the genotype by environment interaction, in addition to the several methods used for its assessment, complicates selection of varieties adapted to such semi-arid areas.

  10. Analysis list: ARID3A [Chip-atlas[Archive

    Lifescience Database Archive (English)

    Full Text Available ARID3A Blood,Liver + hg19 http://dbarchive.biosciencedbc.jp/kyushu-u/hg19/target/ARID3A.1.tsv http:...//dbarchive.biosciencedbc.jp/kyushu-u/hg19/target/ARID3A.5.tsv http://dbarchive.biosciencedb...c.jp/kyushu-u/hg19/target/ARID3A.10.tsv http://dbarchive.biosciencedbc.jp/kyushu-u/hg19/colo/ARID3A.Blood.tsv,http:...//dbarchive.biosciencedbc.jp/kyushu-u/hg19/colo/ARID3A.Liver.tsv http://db...archive.biosciencedbc.jp/kyushu-u/hg19/colo/Blood.gml,http://dbarchive.biosciencedbc.jp/kyushu-u/hg19/colo/Liver.gml ...

  11. Modeling water scarcity and droughts for policy adaptation to climate change in arid and semiarid regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kahil, Mohamed Taher; Dinar, Ariel; Albiac, Jose

    2015-03-01

    Growing water extractions combined with emerging demands for environment protection increase competition for scarce water resources worldwide, especially in arid and semiarid regions. In those regions, climate change is projected to exacerbate water scarcity and increase the recurrence and intensity of droughts. These circumstances call for methodologies that can support the design of sustainable water management. This paper presents a hydro-economic model that links a reduced form hydrological component, with economic and environmental components. The model is applied to an arid and semiarid basin in Southeastern Spain to analyze the effects of droughts and to assess alternative adaptation policies. Results indicate that drought events have large impacts on social welfare, with the main adjustments sustained by irrigation and the environment. The water market policy seems to be a suitable option to overcome the negative economic effects of droughts, although the environmental effects may weaken its advantages for society. The environmental water market policy, where water is acquired for the environment, is an appealing policy to reap the private benefits of markets while protecting ecosystems. The current water management approach in Spain, based on stakeholders' cooperation, achieves almost the same economic outcomes and better environmental outcomes compared to a pure water market. These findings call for a reconsideration of the current management in arid and semiarid basins around the world. The paper illustrates the potential of hydro-economic modeling for integrating the multiple dimensions of water resources, becoming a valuable tool in the advancement of sustainable water management policies.

  12. Effects of fishing technique on assessing species composition in aquatic systems in semi-arid Brazil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ESF Medeiros

    Full Text Available In most ecological field research, appropriate sampling is critical for the understanding of processes underlying fish populations and communities, and is even more important in heterogeneous environments such as the aquatic systems of the semi-arid region of Brazil. This study intends to make a contribution to the development of sampling programs and gear selection in aquatic systems of semi-arid Brazil by evaluating the effects of different fishing techniques on the assessment of richness and composition of the fish fauna in selected aquatic environments. Six sites were selected to represent typical artificial (reservoirs and natural (intermittent streams environments and four different types of sampling gear were applied to each site during four occasions. The present study shows that when selecting sampling techniques to be used in aquatic systems in semi-arid Brazil, one must consider the objectives of the study, e.g. ecological or taxonomic, in order to decide on inclusion of rare species in the sampling population. Also, the effect of the sampling gear on natural abundances of fish must be considered given that some sampling techniques are highly detrimental to fish population numbers.

  13. Process-based modelling of a headwater catchment in semi-arid conditions: the influence of macropore flow

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schaik, N.L.M.B.; Bronstert, A.; Jong, S.M.; Jetten, V.G.; Dam, van J.C.; Ritsema, C.J.; Schnabel, S.

    2014-01-01

    Subsurface stormflow is thought to occur mainly in humid environments with steep terrains. However, in semi-arid areas, preferential flow through macropores can also result in a significant contribution of subsurface stormflow to catchment runoff for varying catchment conditions. Most hydrological

  14. Quantitative assessments of water-use efficiency in Temperate Eurasian Steppe along an aridity gradient.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yizhao Chen

    Full Text Available Water-use efficiency (WUE, defined as the ratio of net primary productivity (NPP to evapotranspiration (ET, is an important indicator to represent the trade-off pattern between vegetation productivity and water consumption. Its dynamics under climate change are important to ecohydrology and ecosystem management, especially in the drylands. In this study, we modified and used a late version of Boreal Ecosystem Productivity Simulator (BEPS, to quantify the WUE in the typical dryland ecosystems, Temperate Eurasian Steppe (TES. The Aridity Index (AI was used to specify the terrestrial water availability condition. The regional results showed that during the period of 1999-2008, the WUE has a clear decreasing trend in the spatial distribution from arid to humid areas. The highest annual average WUE was in dry and semi-humid sub-region (DSH with 0.88 gC mm-1 and the lowest was in arid sub-region (AR with 0.22 gC mm-1. A two-stage pattern of WUE was found in TES. That is, WUE would enhance with lower aridity stress, but decline under the humid environment. Over 65% of the region exhibited increasing WUE. This enhancement, however, could not indicate that the grasslands were getting better because the NPP even slightly decreased. It was mainly attributed to the reduction of ET over 70% of the region, which is closely related to the rainfall decrease. The results also suggested a similar negative spatial correlation between the WUE and the mean annual precipitation (MAP at the driest and the most humid ends. This regional pattern reflected the different roles of water in regulating the terrestrial ecosystems under different aridity levels. This study could facilitate the understanding of the interactions between terrestrial carbon and water cycles, and thus contribute to a sustainable management of nature resources in the dryland ecosystems.

  15. Quantitative assessments of water-use efficiency in Temperate Eurasian Steppe along an aridity gradient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yizhao; Li, Jianlong; Ju, Weimin; Ruan, Honghua; Qin, Zhihao; Huang, Yiye; Jeelani, Nasreen; Padarian, José; Propastin, Pavel

    2017-01-01

    Water-use efficiency (WUE), defined as the ratio of net primary productivity (NPP) to evapotranspiration (ET), is an important indicator to represent the trade-off pattern between vegetation productivity and water consumption. Its dynamics under climate change are important to ecohydrology and ecosystem management, especially in the drylands. In this study, we modified and used a late version of Boreal Ecosystem Productivity Simulator (BEPS), to quantify the WUE in the typical dryland ecosystems, Temperate Eurasian Steppe (TES). The Aridity Index (AI) was used to specify the terrestrial water availability condition. The regional results showed that during the period of 1999-2008, the WUE has a clear decreasing trend in the spatial distribution from arid to humid areas. The highest annual average WUE was in dry and semi-humid sub-region (DSH) with 0.88 gC mm-1 and the lowest was in arid sub-region (AR) with 0.22 gC mm-1. A two-stage pattern of WUE was found in TES. That is, WUE would enhance with lower aridity stress, but decline under the humid environment. Over 65% of the region exhibited increasing WUE. This enhancement, however, could not indicate that the grasslands were getting better because the NPP even slightly decreased. It was mainly attributed to the reduction of ET over 70% of the region, which is closely related to the rainfall decrease. The results also suggested a similar negative spatial correlation between the WUE and the mean annual precipitation (MAP) at the driest and the most humid ends. This regional pattern reflected the different roles of water in regulating the terrestrial ecosystems under different aridity levels. This study could facilitate the understanding of the interactions between terrestrial carbon and water cycles, and thus contribute to a sustainable management of nature resources in the dryland ecosystems.

  16. Use of environmental isotopes in arid zone hydrology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dincer, T.

    1980-01-01

    After aridity is defined some physical and hydrologic features common in arid lands are described. An attempt has been made to identify various groundwater recharge mechanisms in arid countries and to assess their relative importance. The influence of the arid climates on the isotopic composition of the precipitation is discussed. The use of environmental isotopes in run-off and precipitation infiltration and recharge is evaluated, and the importance of isotopic studies in investigating interrelations between aquifers is stressed. Finally, some examples of isotope applications in surface water and its relation to groundwater are given. (author)

  17. Intermediate depth burial of classified transuranic wastes in arid alluvium

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cochran, J.R.; Crowe, B.M.; Di Sanza, F.

    1999-01-01

    Intermediate depth disposal operations were conducted by the US Department of Energy (DOE) at the DOE's Nevada Test Site (NTS) from 1984 through 1989. These operations emplaced high-specific activity low-level wastes (LLW) and limited quantities of classified transuranic (TRU) wastes in 37 m (120-ft) deep, Greater Confinement Disposal (GCD) boreholes. The GCD boreholes are 3 m (10 ft) in diameter and founded in a thick sequence of arid alluvium. The bottom 15 m (50 ft) of each borehole was used for waste emplacement and the upper 21 m (70 ft) was backfilled with native alluvium. The bottom of each GCD borehole is almost 200 m (650 ft) above the water table. The GCD boreholes are located in one of the most arid portions of the US, with an average precipitation of 13 cm (5 inches) per year. The limited precipitation, coupled with generally warm temperatures and low humidities results in a hydrologic system dominated by evapotranspiration. The US Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) 40 CFR 191 defines the requirements for protection of human health from disposed TRU wastes. This EPA standard sets a number of requirements, including probabilistic limits on the cumulative releases of radionuclides to the accessible environment for 10,000 years. The DOE Nevada Operations Office (DOE/NV) has contracted with Sandia National Laboratories (Sandia) to conduct a performance assessment (PA) to determine if the TRU wastes emplaced in the GCD boreholes complies with the EPA's 40 CFR 191 requirements. This paper describes DOE's actions undertaken to evaluate whether the TRU wastes in the GCD boreholes will, or will not, endanger human health. Based on preliminary modeling, the TRU wastes in the GCD boreholes meet the EPA's requirements, and are, therefore, protective of human health

  18. Socio-economic effect on socially-deprived communities of developing drinking water quality problems in arid and semi-arid area of central Rajasthan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    I. Husain

    2014-09-01

    Full Text Available Rajasthan is well known for its Great Thar desert. Central Rajasthan has an arid to semi-arid environment. The area faces either scarcity of water or poor quality of drinking water. In some areas water is transported 2 km or more, which uses time, energy and money. Rich people have their own sources, which is restricted for use by others. Such conditions are affecting socially-deprived communities, both socially and economically. Groundwater is a major source of drinking water due to the unavailability of surface water. There is a lack of groundwater quality knowledge in the community and the data available is hard to understand by consumers. The CCME Water Quality Index is a tool to simplify the water quality report by rating the water on quality standards. It provides meaningful summaries of overall water quality and trends, which is accessible to non-technical lay people. In the present study the objective is to examine the groundwater quality of six districts (Ajmer, Bhilwara, Pali, Rajasamand, Nagaur and Jodhpur, centrally located in Rajasthan, with arid and semi-arid conditions. CCME WQI is also evaluated to produce quality data in a form to be understood by the community. A total of 4369 groundwater sources in 1680 villages from six districts (76 546 km2 were collected and examined. Results are outlined in the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS: 10500, 2012 and 2952 sources are unsafe for drinking. According to CCME WQI groundwater of 93 villages is poor, 343 villages are marginal, and 369 villages are fair in quality. Toxicological studies of unsafe drinking water and their remedial measures are also discussed. A tentative correlation between prevailing water-borne diseases and quality parameter has also been shown

  19. Diversification and persistence at the arid-monsoonal interface: australia-wide biogeography of the Bynoe's gecko (Heteronotia binoei; Gekkonidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fujita, Matthew K; McGuire, Jimmy A; Donnellan, Stephen C; Moritz, Craig

    2010-08-01

    Late Neogene aridification in the Southern Hemisphere caused contractions of mesic biota to refugia, similar to the patterns established by glaciation in the Northern Hemisphere, but these episodes also opened up new adaptive zones that spurred range expansion and diversification in arid-adapted lineages. To understand these dynamics, we present a multilocus (nine nuclear introns, one mitochondrial gene) phylogeographic analysis of the Bynoe's gecko (Heteronotia binoei), a widely distributed complex spanning the tropical monsoon, coastal woodland, and arid zone biomes in Australia. Bayesian phylogenetic analyses, estimates of divergence times, and demographic inferences revealed episodes of diversification in the Pliocene, especially in the tropical monsoon biome, and range expansions in the Pleistocene. Ancestral habitat reconstructions strongly support recent and independent invasions into the arid zone. Our study demonstrates the varied responses to aridification in Australia, including localized persistence of lineages in the tropical monsoonal biome, and repeated invasion of and expansion through newly available arid-zone habitats. These patterns are consistent with those found in other arid environments in the Southern Hemisphere, including the South African succulent karoo and the Chilean lowlands, and highlight the diverse modes of diversification and persistence of Earth's biota during the glacial cycles of the Pliocene and Pleistocene.

  20. Relationship Between Job Burnout and Neuroendocrine Indicators in Soldiers in the Xinjiang Arid Desert: A Cross-Sectional Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ning Tao

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of this study was to explore the relationship between job burnout and neuroendocrine indicators in soldiers living in a harsh environment. Three hundred soldiers stationed in the arid desert and 600 in an urban area were recruited. They filled in the Chinese Maslach Burnout Inventory questionnaire. One hundred soldiers were randomly selected from each group to measure their levels of noradrenaline, serotonin, heat shock protein (HSP-70, adrenocorticotropic hormone, and serum cortisol. Job burnout was more common in soldiers from urban areas than those from rural areas. Job burnout was significantly higher among soldiers stationed in the arid desert than those in urban areas. For soldiers in the arid desert, the levels of HSP-70, serum cortisol, and adrenocorticotropic hormone were significantly higher than in soldiers in urban areas. Correlation analyses showed that the degree of job burnout was weakly negatively correlated with the level of HSP-70. Being an only child, HSP-70 levels, cortisol levels, and ACTH levels were independently associated with job burnout in soldiers stationed in the arid desert. A higher level of job burnout in soldiers stationed in arid desert and a corresponding change in neuroendocrine indicators indicated a correlation between occupational stress and neurotransmitters.

  1. Problems and Prospects of SWAT Model Application on an Arid/Semi-arid Watershed in Arizona

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hydrological characteristics in the semi-arid southwest create unique challenges to watershed modelers. Streamflow in these regions is largely dependent on seasonal, short term, and high intensity rainfall events. The objectives of this study are: 1) to analyze the unique hydrolo...

  2. Hydropedological interpretation of arid soilscapes, South Africa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tinnefeld, Martin; Van Tol, Jacobus; Le Roux, Pieter

    2017-04-01

    Hydropedological investigations in arid regions are scarce due to the low the low contribution of these areas to water resources. Infrequent rainfall and few flow events also complicates measurements hydrological studies. Hydropedological studies, relating soil morphological properties and their spatial distribution to hydrological response, have been studied in detail in semi-arid, temperate, and sub-humid regions. In this paper, we investigated the relation between soil morphological properties and selected hydrological properties of soils in an arid landscape. We also studied the spatial distribution of the morphological properties to conceptualise the hydrological behaviour of different soilscapes in the area. A total of 806 soil profiles, covering an area of 4836 ha in the Northern Cape Province of South Africa were described and classified. The geology is dominated by Dwyka tillite overlain by aeolian sands with scattered Dolerite buttes. Thirteen modal profiles, representing the dominant soils types were selected, sampled at horizon level, and analysed for pH, CEC, iron, manganese, carbonate content. In situ measurements of saturated and near saturated (tension) hydraulic conductivity (Ks) were conducted to determine the water conducting macroporosity (WCM). Undisturbed cores were collected on which water retention characteristics were determined under laboratory conditions. Results indicate that dry soil colour, degree of structure development and the presence, absence, and abundance of carbonates as well as the degree of precipitation, are important indicators of hydrological response. For example; grey soils typically have lower Ks with higher storage capacity than soils dominated by red colours, whereas abundant carbonate precipitations in the soil matrix have lower WCM due to clogging of macropores. The dominant soil distribution pattern indicates that rapid vertical flow, through and out of the pedon, might contribute to recharge of an accumulative

  3. Aridity of Central Asia through the Holocene

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aizen, E. M.; Aizen, V. B.; Mayewski, P. A.; Zhou, H.; Rodda, C.; Joswiak, D.; Takeuchi, N.; Fujita, K.; Kurbatov, A.; Grigholm, B. O.

    2017-12-01

    The dynamics of aridity in Central Asia for over the past 12,000 years has been analyzed using deep ice core records recovered from the Siberian Altai, Tien Shan and Pamir glaciers. An analysis of aridity in the 20-21 centuries based on the long-term meteorological observations complements the paleo- climate reconstruction. The goal of our research is to examine an aridity (at low and high temperatures) in Central Asia as a complex of characteristics including air temperature-precipitation relationship (Koppen, 1918, Geiger, 1961, Mezencev, 1973), intensity of dust loading and biomass burning. The stable isotope ratio, soluble ionic and insoluble particulate geochemical components and oxalate preserved in ice were considered in relation to climatic and environmental changes; and to determine the main aerosol sources using ground- and upper-level meteorological data. Multivariate statistical methods were employed for examination of the main geo-chemical components responsible for the preserved aridity variability. Insoluble particle concentrations preserved in the ice core were affected mainly by precipitation regimes and wind speed. Concentration of all size particles was found to be negatively correlated with monthly temperatures indicating low temperatures during the dry particle deposition. Two abrupt depletions in stable isotope records, i.e., Younger Dryas and Centurial Sever Drought (CSD), occurred during cold, dry, windy periods of intensified dust storms in large desert areas. When climate became colder and drier, the Central Asian deserts extended, wind speeds increased loading mineral dust to atmosphere, which formed inversion while the convection processes and precipitation occurrence were limited. Warmer and wetter conditions are associated with less dust loading that occurred during the Holocene climate optimum, medieval warm and modern warm periods. The sudden climate transitions are accompanied by the most intensifying mineral dust loading. From the

  4. Why relevance theory is relevant for lexicography

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bothma, Theo; Tarp, Sven

    2014-01-01

    This article starts by providing a brief summary of relevance theory in information science in relation to the function theory of lexicography, explaining the different types of relevance, viz. objective system relevance and the subjective types of relevance, i.e. topical, cognitive, situational...... that is very important for lexicography as well as for information science, viz. functional relevance. Since all lexicographic work is ultimately aimed at satisfying users’ information needs, the article then discusses why the lexicographer should take note of all these types of relevance when planning a new...... dictionary project, identifying new tasks and responsibilities of the modern lexicographer. The article furthermore discusses how relevance theory impacts on teaching dictionary culture and reference skills. By integrating insights from lexicography and information science, the article contributes to new...

  5. Future aridity under conditions of global climate change

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asadi Zarch, Mohammad Amin; Sivakumar, Bellie; Malekinezhad, Hossein; Sharma, Ashish

    2017-11-01

    Global climate change is anticipated to cause some major changes in hydroclimatic conditions around the world. As aridity is a reliable indicator of potential available water, assessment of its changes under future climatic conditions is important for proper management of water. This study employs the UNESCO aridity/humidity index, which is a derivative of precipitation (P) and potential evapotranspiration (PET), for assessment of aridity. Historical (1901-2005) simulations and future (2006-2100) projections of 22 global climate models (GCMs) from the fifth phase of the Coupled Model Intercomparison Project (CMIP5) are studied. The Nested Bias Correction (NBC) approach is used to correct possible biases of precipitation (simulated directly by the GCMs) and PET (estimated by applying FAO56-Penman-Monteith model on simulated parameters of the GCMs). To detect future aridity changes, the areal extents of the aridity zones in the past and future periods as well as through four sub-periods (2006-2025, 2026-2050, 2051-2075, and 2076-2100) of the future are compared. The results indicate that changes in climate will alter the areal extents of aridity zones in the future. In general, from the first sub-period towards the last one, the area covered by hyper-arid, arid, semi-arid, and sub-humid zones will increase (by 7.46%, 7.01%, 5.80%, and 2.78%, respectively), while the area of the humid regions will decrease (by 4.76%), suggesting that there will be less water over the global land area in the future. To understand the cause of these changes, precipitation and PET are also separately assumed to be stationary throughout the four future sub-periods and the resulting aridity changes are then analyzed. The results reveal that the aridity changes are mostly caused by the positive PET trends, even though the slight precipitation increase lessens the magnitude of the changes.

  6. Aridity promotes bet hedging via delayed hatching: a case study with two temporary pond crustaceans along a latitudinal gradient.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pinceel, Tom; Vanschoenwinkel, Bram; Hawinkel, Wouter; Tuytens, Karen; Brendonck, Luc

    2017-05-01

    Climate change does affect not only average rainfall and temperature but also their variation, which can reduce the predictability of suitable conditions for growth and reproduction. This situation is problematic for inhabitants of temporary waters whose reproductive success depends on rainfall and evaporation that determine the length of the aquatic phase. For organisms with long-lived dormant life stages, bet hedging models suggest that a fraction of these should stay dormant during each growing season to buffer against the probability of total reproductive failure in variable environments. Thus far, however, little empirical evidence supports this prediction in aquatic organisms. We study geographic variation in delayed hatching of dormant eggs in natural populations of two crustaceans, Branchinella longirostris and Paralimnadia badia, that occur in temporary rock pools along a 725 km latitudinal aridity gradient in Western Australia. Consistent with bet hedging theory, populations of both species were characterised by delayed hatching under common garden conditions and hatching fractions decreased towards the drier end of the gradient where the probability of reproductive success was shown to be lower. This decrease was most pronounced in the species with the longer maturation time, presumably because it is more sensitive to the higher prevalence of short inundations. Overall, these findings illustrate that regional variation in climate can be reflected in differential investment in bet hedging and hints at a higher importance of delayed hatching to persist when the climate becomes harsher. Such strategies could become exceedingly relevant as determinants of vulnerability under climate change.

  7. Realization of daily evapotranspiration in arid ecosystems based on remote sensing techniques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elhag, Mohamed; Bahrawi, Jarbou A.

    2017-03-01

    Daily evapotranspiration is a major component of water resources management plans. In arid ecosystems, the quest for an efficient water budget is always hard to achieve due to insufficient irrigational water and high evapotranspiration rates. Therefore, monitoring of daily evapotranspiration is a key practice for sustainable water resources management, especially in arid environments. Remote sensing techniques offered a great help to estimate the daily evapotranspiration on a regional scale. Existing open-source algorithms proved to estimate daily evapotranspiration comprehensively in arid environments. The only deficiency of these algorithms is the course scale of the used remote sensing data. Consequently, the adequate downscaling algorithm is a compulsory step to rationalize an effective water resources management plan. Daily evapotranspiration was estimated fairly well using an Advance Along-Track Scanner Radiometer (AATSR) in conjunction with (MEdium Resolution Imaging Spectrometer) MERIS data acquired in July 2013 with 1 km spatial resolution and 3 days of temporal resolution under a surface energy balance system (SEBS) model. Results were validated against reference evapotranspiration ground truth values using standardized Penman-Monteith method with R2 of 0.879. The findings of the current research successfully monitor turbulent heat fluxes values estimated from AATSR and MERIS data with a temporal resolution of 3 days only in conjunction with reliable meteorological data. Research verdicts are necessary inputs for a well-informed decision-making processes regarding sustainable water resource management.

  8. The Environmental Fluctuations of some Bioactive Nutraceutical Compounds in Zilla spinosa Inhabiting Arid Habitats

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hemmat Ibrahim KHATTAB

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Zilla spinosa is one of the dominated woody perennial shrubs widespread in the Egyptian Red sea coastal desert, belonging to family Brassicacea. Z. spinosa is used as a folk medicine and for heating by local people. Z. spinosa inhabits arid habitats exposed to adverse climatic changes which influence the production of the bioactive natural products. The natural secondary products have significant importance for plant acclimatization to the arid habitats beside their significant practical application in medicinal, nutritive and industrial purposes. The accumulation levels of some natural products including phenols, tannins, glucosinolates, flavonoids, saponins, proanthocyanidins and cardiac glycosides were measured in Z. spinosa inhabiting different locations of Wadi Hagul during spring and summer seasons. The results of the current study showed that Z. spinosa grown in the adverse environment has adapted to cope with extreme temperature, water deficit and geoclimate changes especially in summer, by enhancing the accumulation of some antioxidant compounds including phenols, tannins, glucosinolates, flavonoids, saponins, cardiac glycosides, concomitant with increments in the total antioxidant capacity and PAL activity. Consequently, Z. spinosa shrubs inhabiting the arid environment is a promising new source of saponins, glucosinolates, cardiac glycosides, phenols and flavonoids which could participate in drug development and exploration of alternative strategies to increase productivity of wild plants.

  9. Herbivore-plant interactions and desertification in arid lands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arid lands around the world have experienced or are currently experiencing degradation that is known as desertification. Animal-plant interactions that have an effect on desertification are among the most important function of animals in arid ecosystems. Desertification has been defined as land de...

  10. Arid Green Infrastructure for Water Control and Conservation ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    Green infrastructure is an approach to managing wet weather flows using systems and practices that mimic natural processes. It is designed to manage stormwater as close to its source as possible and protect the quality of receiving waters. Although most green infrastructure practices were first developed in temperate climates, green infrastructure also can be a cost-effective approach to stormwater management and water conservation in arid and semi-arid regions, such as those found in the western and southwestern United States. Green infrastructure practices can be applied at the site, neighborhood and watershed scales. In addition to water management and conservation, implementing green infrastructure confers many social and economic benefits and can address issues of environmental justice. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) commissioned a literature review to identify the state-of-the science practices dealing with water control and conservation in arid and semi-arid regions, with emphasis on these regions in the United States. The search focused on stormwater control measures or practices that slow, capture, treat, infiltrate and/or store runoff at its source (i.e., green infrastructure). The material in Chapters 1 through 3 provides background to EPA’s current activities related to the application of green infrastructure practices in arid and semi-arid regions. An introduction to the topic of green infrastructure in arid and semi-arid regions i

  11. Emerging crops in the USDA arid lands germplasm collection

    Science.gov (United States)

    The USDA National Plant Germplasm System maintains collections of several emerging crops for arid lands at the National Arid Land Plant Genetic Resources Unit in Parlier, CA (NALPGRU). The guayule, jojoba, and prickly pear collections are most active in terms of current research and crop development...

  12. Watershed Management in Arid Zones: A Prototype Short Course.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thames, John L., Ed.; Fischer, John N., Ed.

    Presented is information recommended for inclusion in a short course to help extend knowledge of water resource development and research techniques in arid and semi-arid regions. Information is particularly intended for applicability in developing nations. Included are considerations of livestock grazing, use of hydrologic data, vegetation…

  13. Pathways to Resilience in Semi-Arid Economies (PRISE)

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    rlarbey

    PRISE Goal. This research will support the emergence of equitable, climate resilient economic development in semi-arid lands through research excellence and ... change in semi-arid areas, and how is the private sector adapting? 4. How do ... Role. Individual. Contact email. Lead Principal Investigator. Dr Tom Mitchell.

  14. Uses of tree legumes in semi-arid regions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Felker, P.

    1980-01-01

    Uses of tree legumes in semi-arid and arid regions are reviewed. This review is divided into sections according to the following general use categories: fuels; human food; livestock food; to increase yields of crops grown beneath their canopies;and control of desertification. (MHR)

  15. Optimizing cooling systems in Egyptian arid urbans

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Medhat, Ahmed A.; Khalil, Essam E.

    2006-01-01

    Present study is devoted to climatic and site oriented investigations that were carried out in a new rural development in the Upper-Egypt. Bioclimatic classifications considered Upper Egypt region, near Sudan border, as a Hot and Dry climatic region. [1]. that is affected by solar heat intensities that can reach 900 W/m2 for a period ranged from 5-to-7 hours per day with the presence of study storms. Cooling season extends up to eight months per year having Upper-day-bulb temperature ranged from 400 degree centigrade - to - 470 degree centigrade while Lower-dry-bulb-temperature ranged from 280 degree centigrade - to - 320 degree centigrade with the relative humidity ranged from 10%-to-37% RH. [2]. Site surveys and field experimental and analyses of the commonly used cooling systems were investigated, evaluated and optimized for optimum indoor comfort conditions at efficient energy efficiency. [3]. Extensive analyses were performed based on Psychrometric formulae to evaluate the impact of energy consumptions related to different cooling systems such as direct expansion, chilled water, and evaporative systems. the present study enables the critical investigations of the influence of arid outdoor conditions and the required indoor thermal parameters on the energy efficiencies of HVAC-system. This work; focuses on the suggestion of suitable system that should be implemented by local energy codes in these arid urban.(Author)

  16. Spatial patterns and natural recruitment of native shrubs in a semi-arid sandy land.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Bo; Yang, Hongxiao

    2013-01-01

    Passive restoration depending on native shrubs is an attractive approach for restoring desertified landscapes in semi-arid sandy regions. We sought to understand the relationships between spatial patterns of native shrubs and their survival ability in sandy environments. Furthermore, we applied our results to better understand whether passive restoration is feasible for desertified landscapes in semi-arid sandy regions. The study was conducted in the semi-arid Mu Us sandy land of northern China with the native shrub Artemisia ordosica. We analyzed population structures and patterns of A. ordosica at the edges and centers of land patches where sand was stabilized by A. ordosica-dominated vegetation. Saplings were more aggregated than adults, and both were more aggregated at the patch edges than at the patch centers. At the patch edges, spatial association of the saplings with the adults was mostly positive at distances 0.3-6.6 m, and turned from positive to neutral, and even negative, at other distances. At the patch centers, the saplings were spaced almost randomly around the adults, and their distances from the adults did not seem to affect their locations. A greater number of A. ordosica individuals emerged at the patch edges than at the patch centers. Such patterns may have resulted from their integrative adjustment to specific conditions of soil water supply and sand drift intensity. These findings suggest that in semi-arid sandy regions, native shrubs that are well-adapted to local environments may serve as low-cost and competent ecological engineers that can promote the passive restoration of surrounding patches of mobile sandy land.

  17. Assessment of the performance of water harvesting systems in semi-arid regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lasage, Ralph

    2016-04-01

    Water harvesting is widely practiced and has the potential to improve water availability for domestic and agricultural use in semi-arid regions. New funds are becoming available to stimulate the implementation of water harvesting projects, for meeting the Sustainable Development Goals and to help communities to adapt to climate change. For this, it is important to understand which factors determine the success of water harvesting techniques under different conditions. For this, we review the literature, including information on the crop yield impacts of water harvesting projects in semi-arid Africa and Asia. Results show that large water harvesting structures (> 500 m3) are less expensive than small structures, when taking into account investment costs, storage capacity and lifetimes. We also find that water harvesting improves crop yields significantly, and that the relative impact of water harvesting on crop yields is largest in low rainfall years. We also see that the governance, technical knowledge and initial investment are more demanding for the larger structures than for smaller structures, which may affect their spontaneous adoption and long term sustainability when managed by local communities. To support the selection of appropriate techniques, we present a decision framework based on case specific characteristics. This framework can also be used when reporting and evaluating the performance of water harvesting techniques, which is up to now quite limited in peer reviewed literature. Based on Bouma, J., Hegde, S.E., Lasage, R., (2016). Assessing the returns to water harvesting: A meta-analysis. Agricultural Water Management 163, 100-109. Lasage, R., Verburg P.H., (2015). Evaluation of small scale water harvesting techniques for semi-arid environments. Journal of Arid Environments 118, 48-57.

  18. Deep learning relevance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lioma, Christina; Larsen, Birger; Petersen, Casper

    2016-01-01

    train a Recurrent Neural Network (RNN) on existing relevant information to that query. We then use the RNN to "deep learn" a single, synthetic, and we assume, relevant document for that query. We design a crowdsourcing experiment to assess how relevant the "deep learned" document is, compared...... to existing relevant documents. Users are shown a query and four wordclouds (of three existing relevant documents and our deep learned synthetic document). The synthetic document is ranked on average most relevant of all....

  19. The current bioenergy production potential of semi-arid and arid regions in sub-Saharan Africa

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wicke, B.; Smeets, E.M.W.; Watson, H.; Faaij, A.P.C.

    2011-01-01

    This article assesses the current technical and economic potential of three bioenergy production systems (cassava ethanol, jatropha oil and fuelwood) in semi-arid and arid regions of eight sub-Saharan African countries. The results indicate that the availability of land for energy production ranges

  20. Contribution to the study of the zonal variation of the climate aridity in central northern Sahara (Algeria)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benseghier-Hadjaidji, Fatiha; Talbi, Nadjib; Derridj, Arezki

    2018-05-01

    The environment degradation at the level of all its compartments which we notice at present, calls us to the risks that it would underestimate the climatic and consequently bioclimatic crisis there, in the North as in the South of the Mediterranean region. To protect the environment is not a luxury. In this respect, we wondered about the zonal variation of the climate aridity at the level of three bordering climatic stations: El-Oued, Touggourt and Ouargla. These are distant from 160 km on average some of the others. For that purpose, we based ourselves on the statistical tool the software "instat +" for the estimation of the ETP (PM) and afterward the determination of the pluvio-evapotranspiration "quotient P/ETP". For this analysis, the climatic data spread out over a period of 20 years. The results allowed to specify the aridity degree of the studied zone. So, they reveal a mitigation of the aridity of the climate in Touggourt and El-Oued while the hyper-aridity distinguishes well the Ouargla region. This approach contributes to a better knowledge of the dry ecosystems. This is important to indicate it to turn better in the eremologic search later.

  1. Determine the optimum spectral reflectance of juniper and pistachio in arid and semi-arid region

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fadaei, Hadi; Suzuki, Rikie

    2012-11-01

    Arid and semi-arid areas of northeast Iran cover about 3.4 million ha are populated by two main tree species, the broadleaf Pistacia vera. L (pistachio) and the conifer Juniperus excelsa ssp. polycarpos (Persian juniper). Natural stands of pistachio in Iran are not only environmentally important but genetically essential as seed sources for pistachio production in orchards. In this study, we estimated the optimum spectral reflectance of juniper forests and natural pistachio stands using remote sensing to help in the sustainable management and production of pistachio in Iran. In this research spectral reflectance are able to specify of multispectral from Advanced Land Observing Satellite (ALOS) that provided by JAXA. These data included PRISM is a panchromatic radiometer with a 2.5 m spatial resolution at nadir, has one band with a wavelength of 0.52-0.77 μm and AVNIR-2 is a visible and near infrared radiometer for observing land and coastal zones with a 10 m spatial resolution at nadir, has four multispectral bands: blue (0.42-0.50 μm), green (0.52-0.60 μm), red (0.61-0.69 μm), and near infrared (0.76-0.89 μm). Total ratio vegetation index (TRVI) of optimum spectral reflectance of juniper and pistachio have been evaluated. The result of TRVI for Pistachio and juniper were (R2= 0.71 and 0.55). I hope this research can provide decision of managers to helping sustainable management for arid and semi-arid regions in Iran.

  2. Analysis of Water Use and Water Scarcity in Arid and Semi-arid Regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Samayoa, S. D.

    2017-12-01

    Analysis of Water Use and Water Scarcity in Arid and Semi-arid Regions Susana Samayoa , Muhammed A. G. Chowdhury, Tushar Sinha Department of Environmental Engineering, Texas A & M University - Kingsville Freshwater sustainability in arid and semi-arid regions is highly uncertain under increasing demands due to population growth and urban development as well as limited water supply. In particular, six largest cities by population among the top twenty U.S. cities are located in Texas (TX), which also experience high variability in water availability due to frequent droughts and floods. Similarly, several regions in Arizona (AZ) are rapidly growing (e.g. Phoenix and Tucson) despite receiving scanty rainfall. Thus, the goal of this study is to analyze water use and water scarcity in watersheds within TX and AZ between 1985 and 2010. The water use data from U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) is analyzed by Hydrological Unit Code (HUC) - 8 within TX and AZ. Total freshwater use by county during 1985 and 2010 were converted into water use by HUC-8 using geospatial analysis. Water availability will be estimated by using a large scale Variable Infiltration Capacity (VIC) hydrologic model. The VIC model will be calibrated and validated for multiple basins located in Texas and Arizona. The VIC model simulated total streamflow will be aggregated across the 1/8 degree grids that are within each HUC-8 to estimate water supply. The excess water for upstream HUC-8s (= local supply minus demands) will be routed, in addition to locally generated streamflow, to estimate water availability in downstream HUC-8s. Water Scarcity Index, defined as the ratio of total freshwater demand to supply, will be estimated during 1985 and 2010 to evaluate the effects of water availability and demands on scarcity. Finally, water scarcity and use will be analyzed by HUC-8s within TX and AZ. Such information could be useful in water resources management and planning. Keywords: Water scarcity, water use

  3. Development of an arid site closure plan

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nyhan, J.W.; Barnes, F.J.

    1987-01-01

    This document describes the development of a prototype plan for the effective closure and stabilization of an arid low-level waste disposal site. This plan will provide demonstrated closure techniques for a trench in a disposal site at Los Alamos. The accuracy of modeling soil water storage by two hydrologic models, CREAMS and HELP, was tested by comparing simulation results with field measurements of soil moisture in eight experimental landfill cover systems having a range of well-defined soil profiles and vegetative covers. Regression analysis showed that CREAMS generally represented soil moisture more accurately than HELP simulations. Precautions for determining parameter values for model input and for interpreting simulation results are discussed. A specific example is presented showing how the field-validated hydrologic models can be used to develop a final prototype closure plan. 15 refs., 13 figs., 3 tabs

  4. Use of composts in revegetating arid lands

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brandt, C.A.; Hendrickson, P.L.

    1991-09-01

    Compost has been suggested as a soil amendment for arid lands at the US Department of Energy's Hanford Site in southeastern Washington State. The operating contractor of the site, Westinghouse Hanford Company, requested that the Pacific Northwest Laboratory conduct a literature review to compile additional information on the use of compost amendments and their benefits. This report provides background information on the factors needed for plant growth and the consequences of severe soil disturbance. This report also discussed the characteristics of composts relative to other amendments and how they each affect plant growth. Finally,regulatory requirements that could affect land application of sludge-based compost on the Hanford Site are reviewed.

  5. Research summary: characterization of radionuclide and moisture movement through arid region sediments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gee, G.W.; Jones, T.L.; Rai, D.

    1981-09-01

    This project has the task of understanding the movement of moisture and radionuclides under arid region conditions. This understanding will be used to maximize the isolation of low level waste from the environment. Specific objectives include: field monitoring of moisture and radionuclide transport at an arid region site; assessment of the interaction of radionuclides with unsaturated soils in arid regions; evaluation of radionuclide transport in unsaturated soils by appropriate mathematical models; and assessment of the importance of upward migration of radionuclides by evaporation and diffusion processes. The Burial Waste Test Facility (BWTF) located near Richland, Washington, on the Department of Energy (DOE) Hanford Site has been monitored for water content and radionuclide transport for the past two years. Tritium movement has been observed to depths of 7.6 m in both irrigated and nonirrigated lysimeters. Laboratory tests were conducted to determine how leachate from uranium tailings interacts with geologic materials. Acid leach tailings and tailings solution and geologic materials typical of mill site tailing pits were physically and chemically characterized. Investigation was made of the sorption characteristics of heavy metals and radionuclides on the geologic materials under low and neutral pH conditions. From solubility tests conducted at Pacific Northwest Laboratory, thermodynamic considerations predicted that for the Eh-pH range of natural aqueous environment, the dominant species of Pu is likely to be Pu(V) in relatively oxidizing environments and Pu(III) in reducing environments. Radionuclide transport through unsaturated media was investigated by using two solute transport models to describe the transport of tritium and strontium-85 in laboratory columns. A new approach was used to analyze radon emissions from uranium mill tailings

  6. Estimation of groundwater recharge via deuterium labelling in the semi-arid Cuvelai-Etosha Basin, Namibia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beyer, Matthias; Gaj, Marcel; Hamutoko, Josefina Tulimeveva; Koeniger, Paul; Wanke, Heike; Himmelsbach, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    deuterium labelling technique for the estimation of groundwater recharge in semi-arid regions. Deuterium proved to be a suitable tracer for studies within the soil-vegetation-atmosphere interface. The results of this study are relevant for the design of labelling experiments in the unsaturated zone of dry areas using (2)H2O as a tracer and obtaining estimations of groundwater recharge on a local scale. The presented methodology is particularly beneficial in data-scarce environments, where recharge pathways and mechanisms are poorly understood.

  7. Geochemical Weathering Increases Lead Bioaccessibility in Semi-Arid Mine Tailings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayes, Sarah M.; Webb, Sam M.; Bargar, John R.; O'Day, Peggy A.; Maier, Raina M.; Chorover, Jon

    2012-01-01

    Mine tailings can host elevated concentrations of toxic metal(loid)s that represent a significant hazard to surrounding communities and ecosystems. Eolian transport, capable of translocating small (micrometer-sized) particles, can be the dominant mechanism of toxic metal dispersion in arid or semi-arid landscapes. Human exposure to metals can then occur via direct inhalation or ingestion of particulates. The fact that measured doses of total lead (Pb) in geomedia correlate poorly with blood Pb levels highlights a need to better resolve the precise distribution of molecularly-speciated metal-bearing phases in the complex particle mixtures. Species distribution controls bioaccessibility, thereby directly impacting health risk. This study seeks to correlate Pb-containing particle size and mineral composition with lability and bioaccessibility in mine tailings subjected to weathering in a semi-arid environment. We employed X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS) and X-ray fluorescence (XRF), coupled with sequential chemical extractions, to study Pb speciation in tailings from the semi-arid Arizona Klondyke State Superfund Site. Representative samples ranging in pH from 2.6 to 5.4 were selected for in-depth study of Pb solid-phase speciation. The principle lead-bearing phase was plumbojarosite (PbFe6(SO4)4(OH)12), but anglesite (PbSO4) and iron oxide-sorbed Pb were also observed. Anglesite, the most bioavailable mineral species of lead identified in this study, was enriched in surficial tailings samples, where Pb concentrations in the clay size fraction were 2–3 times higher by mass relative to bulk. A mobile and bioaccessible Pb phase accumulates in surficial tailings, with a corresponding increase in risk of human exposure to atmospheric particles. PMID:22553941

  8. Native-plant amendments and topsoil addition enhance soil function in post-mining arid grasslands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kneller, Tayla; Harris, Richard J; Bateman, Amber; Muñoz-Rojas, Miriam

    2018-04-15

    One of the most critical challenges faced in restoration of disturbed arid lands is the limited availability of topsoil. In post-mining restoration, alternative soil substrates such as mine waste could be an adequate growth media to alleviate the topsoil deficit, but these materials often lack appropriate soil characteristics to support the development and survival of seedlings. Thus, addition of exogenous organic matter may be essential to enhance plant survival and soil function. Here, we present a case study in the arid Pilbara region (north-west Western Australia), a resource-rich area subject to intensive mining activities. The main objective of our study was to assess the effects of different restoration techniques such as soil reconstruction by blending available soil materials, sowing different compositions of plant species, and addition of a locally abundant native soil organic amendment (Triodia pungens biomass) on: (i) seedling recruitment and growth of Triodia wiseana, a dominant grass in Australian arid ecosystems, and (ii) soil chemical, physical, and biological characteristics of reconstructed soils, including microbial activity, total organic C, total N, and C and N mineralisation. The study was conducted in a 12-month multifactorial microcosms setting in a controlled environment. Our results showed that the amendment increased C and N contents of re-made soils, but these values were still lower than those obtained in the topsoil. High microbial activity and C mineralisation rates were found in the amended waste that contrasted the low N mineralisation but this did not translate into improved emergence or survival of T. wiseana. These results suggest a short- or medium-term soil N immobilisation caused by negative priming effect of fresh un-composted amendment on microbial communities. We found similar growth and survival rates of T. wiseana in topsoil and a blend of topsoil and waste (50:50) which highlights the importance of topsoil, even in a

  9. Spatial variation in the flux of atmospheric deposition and its ecological effects in arid Asia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jiao, Linlin; Wang, Xunming; Li, Danfeng

    2018-06-01

    Atmospheric deposition is one of the key land surface processes, and plays important roles in regional ecosystems and global climate change. Previous studies have focused on the magnitude of and the temporal and spatial variations in the flux of atmospheric deposition, and the composition of atmospheric deposition on a local scale. However, there have been no comprehensive studies of atmospheric deposition on a regional scale and its ecological effects in arid Asia. The temporal and spatial patterns, composition of atmospheric deposition, and its potential effects on regional ecosystems in arid Asia are investigated in this study. The results show that the annual deposition flux is high on the Turan Plain, Aral Sea Desert, and Tarim Basin. The seasonal deposition flux also varies remarkably among different regions. The Tarim Basin shows higher deposition flux in both spring and summer, southern Mongolian Plateau has a higher deposition flux in spring, and the deposition flux of Iran Plateau is higher in summer. Multiple sources of elements in deposited particles are identified. Calcium, iron, aluminum, and magnesium are mainly derived from remote regions, while zinc, copper and lead have predominantly anthropogenic sources. Atmospheric deposition can provide abundant nutrients to vegetation and consequently play a role in the succession of regional ecosystems by affecting the structure, function, diversity, and primary production of the vegetation, especially the exotic or short-lived opportunistic species in arid Asia. Nevertheless, there is not much evidence of the ecological effects of atmospheric deposition on the regional and local scale. The present results may help in further understanding the mechanism of atmospheric deposition as well as providing a motivation for the protection of the ecological environment in arid Asia.

  10. Evolutionary speed limited by water in arid Australia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldie, Xavier; Gillman, Len; Crisp, Mike; Wright, Shane

    2010-09-07

    The covariation of biodiversity with climate is a fundamental pattern in nature. However, despite the ubiquity of this relationship, a consensus on the ultimate cause remains elusive. The evolutionary speed hypothesis posits direct mechanistic links between ambient temperature, the tempo of micro-evolution and, ultimately, species richness. Previous research has demonstrated faster rates of molecular evolution in warmer climates for a broad range of poikilothermic and homeothermic organisms, in both terrestrial and aquatic environments. In terrestrial systems, species richness increases with both temperature and water availability and the interaction of those terms: productivity. However, the influence of water availability as an independent variable on micro-evolutionary processes has not been examined previously. Here, using methodology that limits the potentially confounding role of cladogenetic and demographic processes, we report, to our knowledge, the first evidence that woody plants living in the arid Australian Outback are evolving more slowly than related species growing at similar latitudes in moist habitats on the mesic continental margins. These results support a modified evolutionary speed explanation for the relationship between the water-energy balance and plant diversity patterns.

  11. Large-scale hydrological modelling in the semi-arid north-east of Brazil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Güntner, Andreas

    2002-07-01

    for the generating rainfall time series of higher temporal resolution. All model parameters of Wasa can be derived from physiographic information of the study area. Thus, model calibration is primarily not required. Model applications of Wasa for historical time series generally results in a good model performance when comparing the simulation results of river discharge and reservoir storage volumes with observed data for river basins of various sizes. The mean water balance as well as the high interannual and intra-annual variability is reasonably represented by the model. Limitations of the modelling concept are most markedly seen for sub-basins with a runoff component from deep groundwater bodies of which the dynamics cannot be satisfactorily represented without calibration. Further results of model applications are: (1) Lateral processes of redistribution of runoff and soil moisture at the hillslope scale, in particular reinfiltration of surface runoff, lead to markedly smaller discharge volumes at the basin scale than the simple sum of runoff of the individual sub-areas. Thus, these processes are to be captured also in large-scale models. The different relevance of these processes for different conditions is demonstrated by a larger percentage decrease of discharge volumes in dry as compared to wet years. (2) Precipitation characteristics have a major impact on the hydrological response of semi-arid environments. In particular, underestimated rainfall intensities in the rainfall input due to the rough temporal resolution of the model and due to interpolation effects and, consequently, underestimated runoff volumes have to be compensated in the model. A scaling factor in the infiltration module or the use of disaggregated hourly rainfall data show good results in this respect. The simulation results of Wasa are characterized by large uncertainties. These are, on the one hand, due to uncertainties of the model structure to adequately represent the relevant

  12. Refining surface net radiation estimates in arid and semi-arid climates of Iran

    Science.gov (United States)

    Golkar, Foroogh; Rossow, William B.; Sabziparvar, Ali Akbar

    2018-06-01

    Although the downwelling fluxes exhibit space-time scales of dependency on characteristic of atmospheric variations, especially clouds, the upward fluxes and, hence the net radiation, depends on the variation of surface properties, particularly surface skin temperature and albedo. Evapotranspiration at the land surface depends on the properties of that surface and is determined primarily by the net surface radiation, mostly absorbed solar radiation. Thus, relatively high spatial resolution net radiation data are needed for evapotranspiration studies. Moreover, in more arid environments, the diurnal variations of surface (air and skin) temperature can be large so relatively high (sub-daily) time resolution net radiation is also needed. There are a variety of radiation and surface property products available but they differ in accuracy, space-time resolution and information content. This situation motivated the current study to evaluate multiple sources of information to obtain the best net radiation estimate with the highest space-time resolution from ISCCP FD dataset. This study investigates the accuracy of the ISCCP FD and AIRS surface air and skin temperatures, as well as the ISCCP FD and MODIS surface albedos and aerosol optical depths as the leading source of uncertainty in ISCCP FD dataset. The surface air temperatures, 10-cm soil temperatures and surface solar insolation from a number of surface sites are used to judge the best combinations of data products, especially on clear days. The corresponding surface skin temperatures in ISCCP FD, although they are known to be biased somewhat high, disagreed more with AIRS measurements because of the mismatch of spatial resolutions. The effect of spatial resolution on the comparisons was confirmed using the even higher resolution MODIS surface skin temperature values. The agreement of ISCCP FD surface solar insolation with surface measurements is good (within 2.4-9.1%), but the use of MODIS aerosol optical depths as

  13. Evaporation as the transport mechanism of metals in arid regions

    KAUST Repository

    Lima, Ana T.; Safar, Zeinab; Loch, J.P. Gustav

    2014-01-01

    in soils. Due to the low rainfall and high evaporation rates in arid regions, groundwater quality is not threatened and all soil contamination issues tend to be overlooked. But if soil contamination happens, where do contaminants go? This study tests

  14. Introducing Pathways to Resilience in Semi-Arid Economies (PRISE ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    rlarbey

    Equitable, climate resilient economic development in semi-arid .... manufacturing or services (apart from health, insurance and tourism). Further research ... evaluated, particularly economic impact assessments of adaptation both on existing.

  15. Patchiness in semi-arid dwarf shrublands: evidence from satellite ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ... Plants; Remote sensing; Rhigozum obovatum Burch; Satellite-derived vegetation indices; Woody species; patchiness; semi-arid; dwarf shrubland; shrublands; co2; assimilation; karoo; south africa; ndvi; satellite imagery; geochemical mound; rhigozum obovatum; eriocephalus ericoides; pentzia incana; vegetation; botany

  16. Predicting genotypes environmental range from genome-environment associations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Manel, Stéphanie; Andrello, Marco; Henry, Karine; Verdelet, Daphné; Darracq, Aude; Guerin, Pierre-Edouard; Desprez, Bruno; Devaux, Pierre

    2018-05-17

    Genome-environment association methods aim to detect genetic markers associated with environmental variables. The detected associations are usually analysed separately to identify the genomic regions involved in local adaptation. However, a recent study suggests that single-locus associations can be combined and used in a predictive way to estimate environmental variables for new individuals on the basis of their genotypes. Here, we introduce an original approach to predict the environmental range (values and upper and lower limits) of species genotypes from the genetic markers significantly associated with those environmental variables in an independent set of individuals. We illustrate this approach to predict aridity in a database constituted of 950 individuals of wild beets and 299 individuals of cultivated beets genotyped at 14,409 random Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms (SNPs). We detected 66 alleles associated with aridity and used them to calculate the fraction (I) of aridity-associated alleles in each individual. The fraction I correctly predicted the values of aridity in an independent validation set of wild individuals and was then used to predict aridity in the 299 cultivated individuals. Wild individuals had higher median values and a wider range of values of aridity than the cultivated individuals, suggesting that wild individuals have higher ability to resist to stress-aridity conditions and could be used to improve the resistance of cultivated varieties to aridity. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

  17. Towards Building Reliable, High-Accuracy Solar Irradiance Database For Arid Climates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Munawwar, S.; Ghedira, H.

    2012-12-01

    Middle East's growing interest in renewable energy has led to increased activity in solar technology development with the recent commissioning of several utility-scale solar power projects and many other commercial installations across the Arabian Peninsula. The region, lying in a virtually rainless sunny belt with a typical daily average solar radiation exceeding 6 kWh/m2, is also one of the most promising candidates for solar energy deployment. However, it is not the availability of resource, but its characterization and reasonably accurate assessment that determines the application potential. Solar irradiance, magnitude and variability inclusive, is the key input in assessing the economic feasibility of a solar system. The accuracy of such data is of critical importance for realistic on-site performance estimates. This contribution aims to identify the key stages in developing a robust solar database for desert climate by focusing on the challenges that an arid environment presents to parameterization of solar irradiance attenuating factors. Adjustments are proposed based on the currently available resource assessment tools to produce high quality data for assessing bankability. Establishing and maintaining ground solar irradiance measurements is an expensive affair and fairly limited in time (recently operational) and space (fewer sites) in the Gulf region. Developers within solar technology industry, therefore, rely on solar radiation models and satellite-derived data for prompt resource assessment needs. It is imperative that such estimation tools are as accurate as possible. While purely empirical models have been widely researched and validated in the Arabian Peninsula's solar modeling history, they are known to be intrinsically site-specific. A primal step to modeling is an in-depth understanding of the region's climate, identifying the key players attenuating radiation and their appropriate characterization to determine solar irradiance. Physical approach

  18. Aridity changes in the Tibetan Plateau in a warming climate

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gao, Yanhong; Li, Xia; Xu, Jianwei; Ruby Leung, L.; Chen, Deliang

    2015-01-01

    Desertification in the Tibetan Plateau (TP) has drawn increasing attention in the recent decades. It has been postulated as a consequence of increasing climate aridity due to the observed warming. This study quantifies the aridity changes in the TP and attributes the changes to different climatic factors. Using the ratio of precipitation to potential evapotranspiration (P/PET) as an aridity index, we used observed meteorological records at 83 stations in the TP to calculate PET using the Penman–Monteith algorithm and the ratio. Spatial and temporal changes of P/PET in 1979–2011 were analyzed. Results show that stations located in the arid and semi-arid northwestern TP are becoming significantly wetter, and half of the stations in the semi-humid eastern TP are becoming drier, though not significantly, in the recent three decades. The aridity change patterns are significantly correlated with the change patterns of precipitation, sunshine duration and diurnal temperature range. Temporal correlations between the annual P/PET ratio and other meteorological variables confirm the significant correlation between aridity and the three variables, with precipitation being the dominant driver of P/PET changes at the interannual time scale. Annual PET are insignificantly but negatively correlated with P/PET in the cold season. In the warm season, however, the correlation between PET and P/PET is significant at the confidence level of 99.9% when the cryosphere near the surface melts. Significant correlation between annual wind speed and aridity occurs in limited locations and months. Consistency in the climatology pattern and linear trends in surface air temperature and precipitation calculated using station data, gridded data, and nearest grid-to-stations for the TP average and across sub-basins indicate the robustness of the trends despite the large spatial heterogeneity in the TP that challenge climate monitoring. (letter)

  19. Rainfall simulations as a tool for quantification of soil erosion processes caused by the trampling of sheep and goats in semi-arid and arid landscapes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruthenberg, Jonas; Tumbrink, Jonas; Wilms, Tobias; Peter, Klaus Daniel; Wirtz, Stefan; Ries, Johannes B.

    2015-04-01

    As there is a massive increase of livestock husbandry in semi-arid and arid landscapes, the investigation of trampling-induced soil erosion has become indispensable for a better understanding of erosive processes such as loosening and translocation of sediment, as well as the genesis of rill erosion and gully systems. Our work will support other studies focusing on desertification and land-use changes in the investigated landscapes. Up to this date, research on livestock-induced soil erosion, even in relation to other erosion processes such as aeolian and fluvial/pluvial sediment translocation, is very scarcely found in literature. The presented study on trampling-induced soil erosion by sheep and goats in arid and semi-arid landscapes aims to create a general understanding, an estimation and quantification of the influencing factors of these erosive processes. Within this study, we present the first results of several field rainfall experiments on rock fragment translocation as well as loosening and transportation of coarse and fine sediment depending on the motion sequence and the individual weight, size, and hoof beat of the animals. Furthermore, we conducted additional experiments to investigate the trampling-induced erosion processes for various other sediments, especially those in the range of clay, silt, and sand. To do so, we used a specially designed test plot, equipped with sediment traps on each side. For a clear and reliable analysis of the measured parameters, univariate as well as multivariate statistical methods have been used. For all field methods, we developed relevant statements concerning flock size. The rock fragment translocation experiments done so fare have shown that a flock of 45 sheep or goats moved 87 % of 320 spread out rock fragments with a mean translocation distance of 0.123 m when trampling across a test plot of 3.2 m^2. Besides that we found out that the soil surface was worked up in a way that the loosened fine sediment proved to

  20. Biomimicry as an approach for sustainable architecture case of arid regions with hot and dry climate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bouabdallah, Nabila; M'sellem, Houda; Alkama, Djamel

    2016-07-01

    This paper aims to study the problem of thermal comfort inside buildings located in hot and arid climates. The principal idea behind this research is using concepts based on the potential of nature as an instrument that helps creating appropriate facades with the environment "building skin". The biomimetic architecture imitates nature through the study of form, function, behaviour and ecosystems of biological organisms. This research aims to clarify the possibilities that can be offered by biomimicry architecture to develop architectural bio-inspired building's design that can help to enhance indoor thermal ambiance in buildings located in hot and dry climate which helps to achieve thermal comfort for users.

  1. ARID1B alterations identify aggressive tumors in neuroblastoma.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Soo Hyun; Kim, Jung-Sun; Zheng, Siyuan; Huse, Jason T; Bae, Joon Seol; Lee, Ji Won; Yoo, Keon Hee; Koo, Hong Hoe; Kyung, Sungkyu; Park, Woong-Yang; Sung, Ki W

    2017-07-11

    Targeted panel sequencing was performed to determine molecular targets and biomarkers in 72 children with neuroblastoma. Frequent genetic alterations were detected in ALK (16.7%), BRCA1 (13.9%), ATM (12.5%), and PTCH1 (11.1%) in an 83-gene panel. Molecular targets for targeted therapy were identified in 16 of 72 patients (22.2%). Two-thirds of ALK mutations were known to increase sensitivity to ALK inhibitors. Sequence alterations in ARID1B were identified in 5 of 72 patients (6.9%). Four of five ARID1B alterations were detected in tumors of high-risk patients. Two of five patients with ARID1B alterations died of disease progression. Relapse-free survival was lower in patients with ARID1B alterations than in those without (p = 0.01). In analysis confined to high-risk patients, 3-year overall survival was lower in patients with an ARID1B alteration (33.3 ± 27.2%) or MYCN amplification (30.0 ± 23.9%) than in those with neither ARID1B alteration nor MYCN amplification (90.5 ± 6.4%, p = 0.05). These results provide possibilities for targeted therapy and a new biomarker identifying a subgroup of neuroblastoma patients with poor prognosis.

  2. Spatiotemporal trends in mean temperatures and aridity index over Rwanda

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muhire, I.; Ahmed, F.

    2016-01-01

    This study aims at quantifying the trends in mean temperatures and aridity index over Rwanda for the period of 1961-1992, based on analysis of climatic data (temperatures, precipitations, and potential evapotranspiration). The analysis of magnitude and significance of trends in temperatures and aridity index show the degree of climate change and mark the level of vulnerability to extreme events (e.g., droughts) in different areas of the country. The study reveals that mean temperatures increased in most parts of the country, with a significant increase observed in the eastern lowlands and in the southwestern parts. The highlands located in the northwest and the Congo-Nile crest showed a nonsignificant increase in mean temperatures. Aridity index increased only in March, April, October, and November, corresponding with the rainy seasons. The remaining months of the year showed a decreasing trend. At an annual resolution, the highlands and the western region showed a rise in aridity index with a decreasing pattern over the eastern lowlands and the central plateau. Generally, the highlands presented a nonsignificant increase in mean temperatures and aridity index especially during the rainy seasons. The eastern lowlands showed a significant increase in mean temperatures and decreasing trends in aridity index. Therefore, these areas are bound to experience more droughts, leading to reduced water and consequent decline in agricultural production. On the other hand, the north highlands and southwest region will continue to be more productive.

  3. Hierarchy of responses to resource pulses in arid and semi-arid ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schwinning, Susanne; Sala, Osvaldo E

    2004-10-01

    In arid/semi-arid ecosystems, biological resources, such as water, soil nutrients, and plant biomass, typically go through periods of high and low abundance. Short periods of high resource abundance are usually triggered by rainfall events, which, despite of the overall scarcity of rain, can saturate the resource demand of some biological processes for a time. This review develops the idea that there exists a hierarchy of soil moisture pulse events with a corresponding hierarchy of ecological responses, such that small pulses only trigger a small number of relatively minor ecological events, and larger pulses trigger a more inclusive set and some larger ecological events. This framework hinges on the observation that many biological state changes, where organisms transition from a state of lower to higher physiological activity, require a minimal triggering event size. Response thresholds are often determined by the ability of organisms to utilize soil moisture pulses of different infiltration depth or duration. For example, brief, shallow pulses can only affect surface dwelling organisms with fast response times and high tolerance for low resource levels, such as some species of the soil micro-fauna and -flora, while it takes more water and deeper infiltration to affect the physiology, growth or reproduction of higher plants. This review first discusses how precipitation, climate and site factors translate into soil moisture pulses of varying magnitude and duration. Next, the idea of the response hierarchy for ecosystem processes is developed, followed by an exploration of the possible evolutionary background for the existence of response thresholds to resource pulses. The review concludes with an outlook on global change: does the hierarchical view of precipitation effects in ecosystems provide new perspectives on the future of arid/semiarid lands?

  4. Nuclear-waste isolation in the unsaturated zone of arid regions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wollenberg, H.A.; Wang, J.S.Y.; Korbin, G.

    1982-05-01

    The vadose zone in arid regions is considered as a possible environment for geologic isolation of nuclear waste. There are several topographic and lithologic combinations in the vadose zone of arid regions that may lend themselves to waste isolation considerations. In some cases, topographic highs such as mesas and interbasin ranges - comprised of several rock types, may contain essentially dry or partially saturated conditions favorable for isolation. The adjacent basins, especially in the far western and southwestern US, may have no surface or subsurface hydrologic connections with systems ultimately leading to the ocean. Some rock types may have the favorable characteristics of very low permeability and contain appropriate minerals for the strong chemical retardation of radionuclides. Environments exhibiting these hydrologic and geochemical attributes are the areas underlain by tuffaceous rocks, relatively common in the Basin and Range geomorphic province. Adjacent valley areas, where tuffaceous debris makes up a significant component of valley fill alluvium, may also contain thick zones of unsaturated material, and as such also lend themselves to strong consideration as respository environments. This paper summarizes the aspects of nuclear waste isolation in unsaturated regimes in alluvial-filled valleys and tuffaceous rocks of the Basin and Range province

  5. Summary: special waste form lysimeters - arid program

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Skaggs, R.L.; Walter, M.B.

    1987-01-01

    The purpose of the Special Waste Form Lysimeters - Arid Program is to determine the performance of solidified commercial low-level waste forms using a field-scale lysimeter facility constructed for measuring the release and migration of radionuclides from the waste forms. The performance of these waste forms, as measured by radionuclide concentrations in lysimeter effluent, will be compared to that predicted by laboratory characterization of the waste forms. Waste forms being tested include nuclear power reactor waste streams that have been solidified in cement, Dow polymer, and bitumen. To conduct the field leaching experiments a lysimeter facility was built to measure leachate under actual environmental conditions. Field-scale samples of waste were buried in lysimeters equipped to measure water balance components, effluent radionuclide concentrations, and to a limited extent, radionuclide concentrations in lysimeter soil samples. The waste forms are being characterized by standard laboratory leach tests to obtain estimates of radionuclide release. These estimates will be compared to leach rates observed in the field. Adsorption studies are being conducted to determine the amount of contaminant available for transport after the release. Theoretical solubility calculations will also be performed to investigate whether common solid phases could be controlling radionuclide release. 4 references, 8 figures, 1 table

  6. Salinization mechanisms in semi-arid regions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Santiago, M.M.F.

    1984-01-01

    During a period of three years the basins of the Pereira de Miranda and Caxitore dams, located in the crystalline rock area of Ceara, Brazil, were studied in order to determine the mechanisms of salinization of their waters. Isotope methods ( 18 O/ 16 O) and hidrochemistry (determination of the of the maior ions) were applied to surface, underground and rain water in this study. An isotope model was designed and applied to the determination of evaporation and percolation of dams in semi-arid zones during the dry season. The results are compared to those from a conventional chemical model. As causes of salinization of the water in the dams, the contributions of the rain itself and the lixiviation of the soil are quantified. An interaction between the dams and the underground water is imperceptible. The salinization of the underground water is attributed to recharge of the aquifer with rain water from the surface runoff followed by evaporation of the water rising, due to capilarity, in a one-directional flow to the surface. (Author) [pt

  7. Natural genetic variation in stomatal response can help to increase acclimation of plants to dried environments

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aliniaeifard, S.; Meeteren, Van U.

    2018-01-01

    In the current century, global warming is becoming an alarming issue causing an increase in the area of barren lands. Arid and semi-arid regions are characterised with shortage of water in both under- and above-ground environments. Plants with high water use efficiency should be considered for

  8. Growth and Nutrient Status of Introduced Black Locust (Robinia pseudoacacia L.) Afforestation in Arid and Semi Arid Areas of Iran

    OpenAIRE

    Moshki, A.; Lamersdorf, N. P.

    2011-01-01

    Under global climate change it is expected that many arid regions in the world will experience enhanced desertification in the next decades. Black locust (Robinia pseudoacacia L.) is a one commonly used species for afforestation projects in arid regions of Iran due to its soil rehabilitation capabilities. This study aims to characterize how Robinia growth parameters and nutrient status interacted and were influenced soil properties. The experiment was conducted at three Robinia plantations in...

  9. Non-parametric trend analysis of the aridity index for three large arid and semi-arid basins in Iran

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahani, Hossien; Kherad, Mehrzad; Kousari, Mohammad Reza; van Roosmalen, Lieke; Aryanfar, Ramin; Hosseini, Seyyed Mashaallah

    2013-05-01

    Currently, an important scientific challenge that researchers are facing is to gain a better understanding of climate change at the regional scale, which can be especially challenging in an area with low and highly variable precipitation amounts such as Iran. Trend analysis of the medium-term change using ground station observations of meteorological variables can enhance our knowledge of the dominant processes in an area and contribute to the analysis of future climate projections. Generally, studies focus on the long-term variability of temperature and precipitation and to a lesser extent on other important parameters such as moisture indices. In this study the recent 50-year trends (1955-2005) of precipitation (P), potential evapotranspiration (PET), and aridity index (AI) in monthly time scale were studied over 14 synoptic stations in three large Iran basins using the Mann-Kendall non-parametric test. Additionally, an analysis of the monthly, seasonal and annual trend of each parameter was performed. Results showed no significant trends in the monthly time series. However, PET showed significant, mostly decreasing trends, for the seasonal values, which resulted in a significant negative trend in annual PET at five stations. Significant negative trends in seasonal P values were only found at a number of stations in spring and summer and no station showed significant negative trends in annual P. Due to the varied positive and negative trends in annual P and to a lesser extent PET, almost as many stations with negative as positive trends in annual AI were found, indicating that both drying and wetting trends occurred in Iran. Overall, the northern part of the study area showed an increasing trend in annual AI which meant that the region became wetter, while the south showed decreasing trends in AI.

  10. Development and implementation of a monitoring and information system to increase water use efficiency in arid and semi-arid areas in Limarí, Central Chile (WEIN

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. Berger

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available The project WEIN was funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF | Berlin, Germany in the framework of the high-tech strategy of Germany's program "KMU-Innovativ". The project started in 2012 and was completed in 2014. In the scope of the project, an integrated system for analysis, monitoring and information at river basin level was developed, which provides relevant information for all stakeholders that are concerned with water resource issues. The main objective of the project was to improve water use efficiency and hence ensure the agricultural production in the region. The pilot region, in which this system was implemented, is the semi-arid Limarí basin in Northern Central Chile. One of the main parts of the project was the development and implementation of a web- and app-based irrigation water ordering and accounting system for local farmers.

  11. Excessive reliance on afforestation in China's arid and semi-arid regions: Lessons in ecological restoration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cao, Shixiong; Chen, Li; Shankman, David; Wang, Chunmei; Wang, Xiongbin; Zhang, Hong

    2011-02-01

    Afforestation is a primary tool for controlling desertification and soil erosion in China. Large-scale afforestation, however, has complex and poorly understood consequences for the structure and composition of future ecosystems. Here, we discuss the potential links between China's historical large-scale afforestation practices and the program's effects on environmental restoration in arid and semi-arid regions in northern China based on a review of data from published papers, and offer recommendations to overcome the shortcomings of current environmental policy. Although afforestation is potentially an important approach for environmental restoration, current Chinese policy has not been tailored to local environmental conditions, leading to the use of inappropriate species and an overemphasis on tree and shrub planting, thereby compromising the ability to achieve environmental policy goals. China's huge investment to increase forest cover seems likely to exacerbate environmental degradation in environmentally fragile areas because it has ignored climate, pedological, hydrological, and landscape factors that would make a site unsuitable for afforestation. This has, in many cases, led to the deterioration of soil ecosystems and decreased vegetation cover, and has exacerbated water shortages. Large-scale and long-term research is urgently needed to provide information that supports a more effective and flexible environmental restoration policy.

  12. Identification and functional characterization of a novel bipartite nuclear localization sequence in ARID1A

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bateman, Nicholas W. [Women' s Health Integrated Research Center at Inova Health System, Gynecologic Cancer Center of Excellence, Annandale 22003, VA (United States); The John P. Murtha Cancer Center, Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, 8901 Wisconsin Avenue, Bethesda 20889, MD (United States); Shoji, Yutaka [Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Biology, Michigan State University, Grand Rapids 49503, MI (United States); Conrads, Kelly A.; Stroop, Kevin D. [Women' s Health Integrated Research Center at Inova Health System, Gynecologic Cancer Center of Excellence, Annandale 22003, VA (United States); Hamilton, Chad A. [Women' s Health Integrated Research Center at Inova Health System, Gynecologic Cancer Center of Excellence, Annandale 22003, VA (United States); The John P. Murtha Cancer Center, Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, 8901 Wisconsin Avenue, Bethesda 20889, MD (United States); Gynecologic Oncology Service, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, 8901 Wisconsin Ave, MD, Bethesda, 20889 (United States); Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda 20814, MD (United States); Darcy, Kathleen M. [Women' s Health Integrated Research Center at Inova Health System, Gynecologic Cancer Center of Excellence, Annandale 22003, VA (United States); The John P. Murtha Cancer Center, Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, 8901 Wisconsin Avenue, Bethesda 20889, MD (United States); Maxwell, George L. [Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Inova Fairfax Hospital, Falls Church, VA 22042 (United States); Risinger, John I. [Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Biology, Michigan State University, Grand Rapids 49503, MI (United States); and others

    2016-01-01

    AT-rich interactive domain-containing protein 1A (ARID1A) is a recently identified nuclear tumor suppressor frequently altered in solid tumor malignancies. We have identified a bipartite-like nuclear localization sequence (NLS) that contributes to nuclear import of ARID1A not previously described. We functionally confirm activity using GFP constructs fused with wild-type or mutant NLS sequences. We further show that cyto-nuclear localized, bipartite NLS mutant ARID1A exhibits greater stability than nuclear-localized, wild-type ARID1A. Identification of this undescribed functional NLS within ARID1A contributes vital insights to rationalize the impact of ARID1A missense mutations observed in patient tumors. - Highlights: • We have identified a bipartite nuclear localization sequence (NLS) in ARID1A. • Confirmation of the NLS was performed using GFP constructs. • NLS mutant ARID1A exhibits greater stability than wild-type ARID1A.

  13. Carbon storage capacity of semi-arid grassland soils and sequestration potentials in northern China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiesmeier, Martin; Munro, Sam; Barthold, Frauke; Steffens, Markus; Schad, Peter; Kögel-Knabner, Ingrid

    2015-10-01

    Organic carbon (OC) sequestration in degraded semi-arid environments by improved soil management is assumed to contribute substantially to climate change mitigation. However, information about the soil organic carbon (SOC) sequestration potential in steppe soils and their current saturation status remains unknown. In this study, we estimated the OC storage capacity of semi-arid grassland soils on the basis of remote, natural steppe fragments in northern China. Based on the maximum OC saturation of silt and clay particles soils (grazing land, arable land, eroded areas) were estimated. The analysis of natural grassland soils revealed a strong linear regression between the proportion of the fine fraction and its OC content, confirming the importance of silt and clay particles for OC stabilization in steppe soils. This relationship was similar to derived regressions in temperate and tropical soils but on a lower level, probably due to a lower C input and different clay mineralogy. In relation to the estimated OC storage capacity, degraded steppe soils showed a high OC saturation of 78-85% despite massive SOC losses due to unsustainable land use. As a result, the potential of degraded grassland soils to sequester additional OC was generally low. This can be related to a relatively high contribution of labile SOC, which is preferentially lost in the course of soil degradation. Moreover, wind erosion leads to substantial loss of silt and clay particles and consequently results in a direct loss of the ability to stabilize additional OC. Our findings indicate that the SOC loss in semi-arid environments induced by intensive land use is largely irreversible. Observed SOC increases after improved land management mainly result in an accumulation of labile SOC prone to land use/climate changes and therefore cannot be regarded as contribution to long-term OC sequestration. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  14. Developing User-Driven Climate Information Services to Build Resilience Amongst Groups at Risk of Drought and Flood in Arid and Semi-Arid Land Counties in Kenya

    Science.gov (United States)

    Githungo, W. N.; Shaka, A.; Kniveton, D.; Muithya, L.; Powell, R.; Visman, E. L.

    2014-12-01

    The Arid and Semi-Arid Land (ASAL) counties of Kitui and Makueni in Kenya are experiencing increasing climate variability in seasonal rainfall, including changes in the onset, cessation and distribution of the two principal rains upon which the majority of the population's small-holder farmers and livestock keepers depend. Food insecurity is prevalent with significant numbers also affected by flooding during periods of intense rainfall. As part of a multi-partner Adaptation Consortium, Kenya Meteorological Services (KMS) are developing Climate Information Services (CIS) which can better support decision making amongst the counties' principal livelihoods groups and across County Government ministries. Building on earlier pilots and stakeholder discussion, the system combines the production of climate information tailored for transmission via regional and local radio stations with the establishment of a new SMS service. SMS are provided through a network of CIS intermediaries drawn from across key government ministries, religious networks, non-governmental and community groups, aiming to achieve one SMS recipient per 3-500 people. It also introduces a demand-led, premium-rate SMS weather information service which is designed to be self-financing in the long term. Supporting the ongoing process of devolution, KMS is downscaling national forecasts for each county, and providing seasonal, monthly, weekly and daily forecasts, as well as warnings of weather-related hazards. Through collaboration with relevant ministries, government bodies and research institutions, including livestock, agriculture, drought management and health, technical advisories are developed to provide guidance on application of the climate information. The system seeks to provide timely, relevant information which can enable people to use weather and climate information to support decisions which protect life and property and build resilience to ongoing climate variability and future change.

  15. Endemic shrubs in temperate arid and semiarid regions of northern China and their potentials for rangeland restoration.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chu, Jianmin; Yang, Hongxiao; Lu, Qi; Zhang, Xiaoyan

    2015-06-03

    Some endemic shrubs in arid and semiarid ecosystems are in danger of extinction, and yet they can play useful roles in maintaining or restoring these ecosystems, thus practical efforts are needed to conserve them. The shrubs Amygdalus pedunculata Pall., Amygdalus mongolica (Maxim.) Ricker and Ammopiptanthus mongolicus (Maxim. ex Kom.) Cheng f. are endemic species in arid and semiarid regions of northern China, where rangeland desertification is pronounced due to chronic overgrazing. In this study, we tested the hypothesis that these endemic shrubs have developed adaptations to arid and semiarid environments and could play critical roles as nurse species to initiate the process of rangeland recovery. Based on careful vegetation surveys, we analysed the niches of these species in relation to precipitation, temperature and habitats. All sampling plots were categorized by these endemics and sorted by the non-metric multidimensional scaling method. Species ratios of each life form and species co-occurrence rates with the endemics were also evaluated. Annual average temperature and annual precipitation were found to be the key factors determining vegetation diversity and distributions. Amygdalus pedunculata prefers low hills and sandy land in temperate semiarid regions. Amygdalus mongolica prefers gravel deserts of temperate semiarid regions. Ammopiptanthus mongolicus prefers sandy land of temperate arid regions. Communities of A. pedunculata have the highest diversity and the largest ratios of long-lived grass species, whereas those of A. mongolicus have the lowest diversity but the largest ratios of shrub species. Communities of A. mongolica are a transition between the first two community types. These findings demonstrate that our focal endemic shrubs have evolved adaptations to arid and semiarid conditions, thus they can be nurse plants to stabilize sand ground for vegetation restoration. We suggest that land managers begin using these shrub species to restore

  16. Sediment properties and water movement through shallow unsaturated alluvium at an arid site for disposal of low-level radioactive waste near Beatty, Nye County, Nevada

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fischer, Jeffrey M.

    1992-01-01

    A commercial disposal facility for low-level radioactive waste has been in operation near Beatty, Nevada, since 1962. The facility is in the arid Amargosa Desert where wastes are buried in trenches excavated into unsaturated alluvial sediments. Thick unsaturated zones in arid environments offer many potential advantages for disposal of radioactive wastes, but little is known about the natural movement of water near such facilities. Thus, a study was begun in 1982 to better define the direction and rates of water movement through the unsaturated zone in undisturbed sediments near the disposal facility. This report discusses the analyses of data collected between 1983 and 1988.

  17. New Technologies to Reclaim Arid Lands User's Manual

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    W. K. Ostler

    2002-10-01

    Approximately 70 percent of all U.S. military training lands are located in arid and semi-arid areas. Training activities in such areas frequently adversely affect vegetation, damaging plants and reducing the resilience of vegetation to recover once disturbed. Fugitive dust resulting from a loss of vegetation creates additional problems for human health, increasing accidents due to decreased visibility, and increasing maintenance costs for roads, vehicles, and equipment. Under conventional technologies to mitigate these impacts, it is estimated that up to 35 percent of revegetation projects in arid areas will fail due to unpredictable natural environmental conditions, such as drought, and reclamation techniques that were inadequate to restore vegetative cover in a timely and cost-effective manner. New reclamation and restoration techniques are needed in desert ranges to help mitigate the adverse effects of military training and other activities to arid-land environments. In 1999, a cooperative effort between the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), the US. Department of Defense (DoD), and selected university scientists was undertaken to focus on mitigating military impacts in arid lands. As arid lands are impacted due to DoD and DOE activities, biological and soil resources are gradually lost and the habitat is altered. A conceptual model of that change in habitat quality is described for varying levels of disturbance in the Mojave Desert. As the habitat quality degrades and more biological and physical resources are lost from training areas, greater costs are required to return the land to sustainable levels. The purpose of this manual is to assist land managers in recognizing thresholds associated with habitat degradation and provide reclamation planning and techniques that can reduce the costs of mitigation for these impacted lands to ensure sustainable use of these lands. The importance of reclamation planning is described in this manual with suggestions about

  18. An Overview of Potential Methods for Maintaining Training Area Environments in Arid and Semi-Arid Climates

    Science.gov (United States)

    1983-04-01

    w 0- 4( - *0 0 0, u 44, a, 0 .vi -0 V~ 0. OH4 0 4.3- *- u.* 0.4 a 4, 4-0. a4 - 0 4.4 A o 04 enC 000 .O >" V’. 0 to 0. S 4O,, , U4 IVI I 0 4,0 ’D 0...729-4011 (ask for (817) 658-3922) South Texas PMC Doug Ledbetter South Texas Plant Materials Center Caesar Kleberg Wildlife Research Institute Texas A...Fort Leavenorth 66027 US Army Engineer Districts Computer Science Fort Lee 23801 ATTN: Library ATT: OSCPER/Ml(N-A Fort McClellan 36205 Alaska 99501

  19. Sedimentology and paleoecology of an Eocene Oligocene alluvial lacustrine arid system, Southern Mexico

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beraldi-Campesi, Hugo; Cevallos-Ferriz, Sergio R. S.; Centeno-García, Elena; Arenas-Abad, Concepción; Fernández, Luis Pedro

    2006-10-01

    A depositional model of the Eocene-Oligocene Coatzingo Formation in Tepexi de Rodríguez (Puebla, Mexico) is proposed, based on facies analysis of one of the best-preserved sections, the Axamilpa Section. The sedimentary evolution is interpreted as the retrogradation of an alluvial system, followed by the progressive expansion of an alkaline lake system, with deltaic, palustrine, and evaporitic environments. The analysis suggests a change towards more arid conditions with time. Fossils from this region, such as fossil tracks of artiodactyls, aquatic birds and cat-like mammals, suggest that these animals traversed the area, ostracods populated the lake waters, and plants grew on incipient soils and riparian environments many times throughout the history of the basin. The inferred habitat for some fossil plants coincides with the sedimentological interpretation of an arid to semiarid climate for that epoch. This combined sedimentological-paleontological study of the Axamilpa Section provides an environmental context in which fossils can be placed and brings into attention important biotic episodes, like bird and camelid migrations or the origin of endemic but extinct plants in this area.

  20. Making Deferred Taxes Relevant

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Brouwer, Arjan; Naarding, Ewout

    2018-01-01

    We analyse the conceptual problems in current accounting for deferred taxes and provide solutions derived from the literature in order to make International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) deferred tax numbers value-relevant. In our view, the empirical results concerning the value relevance of

  1. Parsimonious relevance models

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Meij, E.; Weerkamp, W.; Balog, K.; de Rijke, M.; Myang, S.-H.; Oard, D.W.; Sebastiani, F.; Chua, T.-S.; Leong, M.-K.

    2008-01-01

    We describe a method for applying parsimonious language models to re-estimate the term probabilities assigned by relevance models. We apply our method to six topic sets from test collections in five different genres. Our parsimonious relevance models (i) improve retrieval effectiveness in terms of

  2. Sorghum grain as human food in Africa: relevance of content of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Sorghum is a staple food grain in many semi-arid and tropic areas of the world, notably in Sub-Saharan Africa because of its good adaptation to hard environments and its good yield of production. Among important biochemical components for sorghum processing are levels of starch (amylose and amylopectin) and starch ...

  3. Sorghum grain as human food in Africa: relevance of content of starch and amylase activities

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dicko, M.H.; Gruppen, H.; Traore, A.S.; Voragen, A.G.J.; Berkel, van W.J.H.

    2006-01-01

    Sorghum is a staple food grain in many semi-arid and tropic areas of the world, notably in Sub-Saharan Africa because of its good adaptation to hard environments and its good yield of production. Among important biochemical components for sorghum processing are levels of starch (amylose and

  4. The fate of seeds in the soil: a review of the influence of overland flow on seed removal and its consequences for the vegetation of arid and semiarid patchy ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bochet, E.

    2015-01-01

    Since seeds are the principle means by which plants move across the landscape, the final fate of seeds plays a fundamental role in the assemblage, functioning and dynamics of plant communities. Once seeds land on the soil surface after being dispersed from the parent plant, they can be moved horizontally by surface runoff. In arid and semiarid patchy ecosystems, where seeds are scattered into a very heterogeneous environment and intense rainfalls occur, the transport of seeds by runoff to new sites may be an opportunity for seeds to reach more favourable sites for seed germination and seedling survival. Although seed transport by runoff may be of vital importance for the recruitment of plants in these ecosystems, it has received little attention in the scientific literature, especially among soil scientists. The main goals of this review paper are (1) to offer an updated conceptual model of seed fate with a focus on seed destiny in and on the soil; (2) to review studies on seed fate in overland flow and the ecological implications seed transport by runoff has for the origin, spatial patterning and maintenance of patches in arid and semiarid patchy ecosystems; and finally (3) to point out directions for future research. This review shows that seed fate in overland flow may result either in the export of seeds from the system (seed loss) or in the spatial redistribution of seeds within the system through short-distance seed movements (seed displacement). Seed transport by runoff depends on rainfall, slope and soil characteristics. Susceptibility of seed removal varies highly between species and is mainly related to seed traits, including seed size, seed shape, presence of appendages, and ability of a seed to secrete mucilage. Although initially considered as a risk of seed loss, seed removal by runoff has recently been described as an ecological driver that shapes plant composition from the first phases of the plant life by favouring species with seeds able to resist

  5. The use of soil quality indicators to assess soil functionality in restored semi-arid ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muñoz-Rojas, Miriam; Erickson, Todd E.; Dixon, Kingsley W.; Merritt, David J.

    2016-04-01

    Keywords: Pilbara, 1-day CO2 test, microbial activity, mine restoration, soil health, ecosystem services. Introduction Semi-arid and arid environments are highly vulnerable to land degradation and their restoration has commonly showed low rates of success (James et al., 2013). A systematic knowledge of soil functionality is critical to successful restoration of degraded ecosystems since approximately 80% of ecosystem services can be connected to soil functions. The assessment of soil functionality generally involves the evaluation of soil properties and processes as they relate to the ability of soil to function effectively as a component of a healthy ecosystem (Costantini et al., 2015) Using soil quality indicators may be a valuable approach to assess functionality of topsoil and novel substrates used in restoration (Muñoz-Rojas et al., 2014; 2015). A key soil chemical indicator is soil organic C, that has been widely used as an attribute of soil quality because of the many functions that it provides and supports (Willaarts et al., 2015). However, microbial indicators can be more sensitive to disturbances and could be a valuable addition in soil assessment studies in restoration programs. Here, we propose a set of soil quality indicators to assess the soil status in restored soils (topsoil and waste material) of semi-arid environments. The study was conducted during March 2015 in the Pilbara biogeographical region (northwestern Australia) at an iron ore mine site rehabilitated in 2011. Methods Soil samples were collected from two sub-areas with different soil materials used as growth media: topsoil retrieved from nearby stockpiles and a lateritic waste material utilised for its erosive stability and physical competence. An undisturbed natural shrub-grassland ecosystem dominated by Triodia spp. and Acacia spp. representative of the restored area was selected as the analogue reference site. Soil physicochemical analysis were undertaken according to standard methods

  6. Interpretation of environmental isotopic groundwater data. Arid and semi-arid zones

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Geyh, M.A.

    1980-01-01

    Various hydrodynamic aspects are discussed in order to show their implication for the hydrogeological interpretation of environmental isotope and hydrochemical groundwater data. Special attention is drawn to radiocarbon and tritium studies carried out in arid and semi-arid zones. An exponential model has been utilized to determine the mean residence time of the long-term water from springs in karst and crystalline regions. Hydrogeological parameters such as the porosity can be checked by this result. In addition, the exponential model offers the possibility of determining the initial 14 C content of spring water, which is sensitively dependent on the soil of the recharge area. A base-flow model has been introduced to interpret the 14 C and 3 H data of groundwater samples from older karst regions. Differences between pumped and drawn samples exist with respect to the groundwater budget. Owing to pumping, the old base flow is accelerated and becomes enriched in pumped groundwater in comparison to the short-term water. Radiocarbon ages of groundwater in alluvium may be dubious because of isotope exchange with the CO 2 in the root zone along the river bank. Under confined conditions 14 C groundwater ages are diminished if the hydraulic head of the confined aquifer is lower than that of the shallow one. This is due to the radiocarbon downwards transport by convection of shallow groundwater. The same effect occurs, though much faster, if the groundwater table is depleted by groundwater withdrawal. The decrease of the radiocarbon groundwater ages in time can be used to determine the hydraulic transmissibility coefficient of the aquitarde. According to the practical and theoretic results obtained the hydrodynamic aspects require at least the same attention for the interpretation of environmental isotope and hydrochemical data of groundwater as do hydrochemical and isotope fractionation processes. (author)

  7. Future Freshwater Stress on Small Islands: Population, Aridity and Global Warming Targets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karnauskas, K. B.; Schleussner, C. F.; Donnelly, J. P.; Anchukaitis, K. J.

    2017-12-01

    Small island developing states (SIDS) face multiple threats from anthropogenic climate change, including potential changes in freshwater resource availability. Future freshwater stress, including geographic and seasonal variability, has important implications for climate change adaptation scenarios for vulnerable human populations living on islands across the world ocean. Due to a mismatch in spatial scale between SIDS landforms and the horizontal resolution of global climate models (GCMs), SIDS are mostly unaccounted for in GCMs that are used to make future projections of global climate change and its regional impacts. Specific approaches are required to address this gap between broad-scale model projections and regional, policy-relevant outcomes. Here we apply a recently developed methodology to project future changes in aridity in combination with population projections associated with different shared socioeconomic pathways (SSPs) to evaluate overall changes in freshwater stress in SIDS at warming levels of 1.5°C and 2°C above pre-industrial levels. By accounting for evaporative demand a posteriori, we reveal a robust yet spatially variable tendency towards increasing aridity for 16 million people living on islands by mid-century. Although about half of the islands are projected to experience increased rainfall—predominantly in the deep tropics—projected changes in evaporation are more uniform, shifting the global distribution of changes in island freshwater balance towards greater aridity. In many cases, the magnitude of projected drying is comparable to the amplitude of the estimated observed interannual variability, with important consequences for extreme events. While we find that future population growth will dominate changes in projected freshwater stress especially towards the end of the century, projected changes in aridity are found to compound freshwater stress for the vast majority of SIDS. Particularly across the Caribbean region, a

  8. Actinobacteria from arid and desert habitats: diversity and biological activity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joachim eWink

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract The lack of new antibiotics in the pharmaceutical pipeline guides more and more researchers to leave the classical isolation procedures and to look in special niches and ecosystems. Bioprospecting of extremophilic Actinobacteria through mining untapped strains and avoiding resiolation of known biomolecules is among the most promising strategies for this purpose. With this approach, members of acidtolerant, alkalitolerant, psychrotolerant, thermotolerant, halotolerant and xerotolerant Actinobacteria have been obtained from respective habitats. Among these, little survey exists on the diversity of Actinobacteria in arid areas, which are often adapted to relatively high temperatures, salt concentrations, and radiation. Therefore, arid and desert habitats are special ecosystems which can be recruited for the isolation of uncommon Actinobacteria with new metabolic capability.At the time of this writing, members of Streptomyces, Micromonospora, Saccharothrix, Streptosporangium, Cellulomonas, Amycolatopsis, Geodermatophilus, Lechevalieria, Nocardia and Actinomadura are reported from arid habitats. However, metagenomic data present dominant members of the communities in desiccating condition of areas with limited water availability that are not yet isolated. Furthermore, significant diverse types of polyketide synthase (PKS and nonribosomal peptide synthetase (NRPS genes are detected in xerophilic and xerotolerant Actinobacteria and some bioactive compounds are reported from them. Rather than pharmaceutically active metabolites, molecules with protection activity against drying such as Ectoin and Hydroxyectoin with potential application in industry and agriculture have also been identified from xerophilic Actinobacteria. In addition, numerous biologically active small molecules are expected to be discovered from arid adapted Actinobacteria in the future. In the current survey, the diversity and biotechnological potential of Actinobacteria

  9. Actinobacteria from Arid and Desert Habitats: Diversity and Biological Activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohammadipanah, Fatemeh; Wink, Joachim

    2015-01-01

    The lack of new antibiotics in the pharmaceutical pipeline guides more and more researchers to leave the classical isolation procedures and to look in special niches and ecosystems. Bioprospecting of extremophilic Actinobacteria through mining untapped strains and avoiding resiolation of known biomolecules is among the most promising strategies for this purpose. With this approach, members of acidtolerant, alkalitolerant, psychrotolerant, thermotolerant, halotolerant and xerotolerant Actinobacteria have been obtained from respective habitats. Among these, little survey exists on the diversity of Actinobacteria in arid areas, which are often adapted to relatively high temperatures, salt concentrations, and radiation. Therefore, arid and desert habitats are special ecosystems which can be recruited for the isolation of uncommon Actinobacteria with new metabolic capability. At the time of this writing, members of Streptomyces, Micromonospora, Saccharothrix, Streptosporangium, Cellulomonas, Amycolatopsis, Geodermatophilus, Lechevalieria, Nocardia, and Actinomadura are reported from arid habitats. However, metagenomic data present dominant members of the communities in desiccating condition of areas with limited water availability that are not yet isolated. Furthermore, significant diverse types of polyketide synthase (PKS) and non-ribosomal peptide synthetase (NRPS) genes are detected in xerophilic and xerotolerant Actinobacteria and some bioactive compounds are reported from them. Rather than pharmaceutically active metabolites, molecules with protection activity against drying such as Ectoin and Hydroxyectoin with potential application in industry and agriculture have also been identified from xerophilic Actinobacteria. In addition, numerous biologically active small molecules are expected to be discovered from arid adapted Actinobacteria in the future. In the current survey, the diversity and biotechnological potential of Actinobacteria obtained from arid ecosystems

  10. Actinobacteria from Arid and Desert Habitats: Diversity and Biological Activity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohammadipanah, Fatemeh; Wink, Joachim

    2016-01-01

    The lack of new antibiotics in the pharmaceutical pipeline guides more and more researchers to leave the classical isolation procedures and to look in special niches and ecosystems. Bioprospecting of extremophilic Actinobacteria through mining untapped strains and avoiding resiolation of known biomolecules is among the most promising strategies for this purpose. With this approach, members of acidtolerant, alkalitolerant, psychrotolerant, thermotolerant, halotolerant and xerotolerant Actinobacteria have been obtained from respective habitats. Among these, little survey exists on the diversity of Actinobacteria in arid areas, which are often adapted to relatively high temperatures, salt concentrations, and radiation. Therefore, arid and desert habitats are special ecosystems which can be recruited for the isolation of uncommon Actinobacteria with new metabolic capability. At the time of this writing, members of Streptomyces, Micromonospora, Saccharothrix, Streptosporangium, Cellulomonas, Amycolatopsis, Geodermatophilus, Lechevalieria, Nocardia, and Actinomadura are reported from arid habitats. However, metagenomic data present dominant members of the communities in desiccating condition of areas with limited water availability that are not yet isolated. Furthermore, significant diverse types of polyketide synthase (PKS) and non-ribosomal peptide synthetase (NRPS) genes are detected in xerophilic and xerotolerant Actinobacteria and some bioactive compounds are reported from them. Rather than pharmaceutically active metabolites, molecules with protection activity against drying such as Ectoin and Hydroxyectoin with potential application in industry and agriculture have also been identified from xerophilic Actinobacteria. In addition, numerous biologically active small molecules are expected to be discovered from arid adapted Actinobacteria in the future. In the current survey, the diversity and biotechnological potential of Actinobacteria obtained from arid ecosystems

  11. Potential of arid zone vegetation as a source of substrates

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bassham, J.A.

    1977-11-01

    Three aspects of the potential of vegetation in arid zones as a source of substrates are discussed. The first includes the limitations on efficiency of conversion of solar energy to the stored chemical energy of biomass in green plants, and the subsequent biochemical pathways of carbon dioxide fixation and biosynthesis. Second is the potential of plants endogenous to arid zones. Finally, the use of covered agriculture or controlled environmental agriculture (CEA) is considered both in its present form and in terms of possible extenion to the large scale production of stable crops. (JGB)

  12. Culturally Relevant Cyberbullying Prevention

    OpenAIRE

    Phillips, Gregory John

    2017-01-01

    In this action research study, I, along with a student intervention committee of 14 members, developed a cyberbullying intervention for a large urban high school on the west coast. This high school contained a predominantly African American student population. I aimed to discover culturally relevant cyberbullying prevention strategies for African American students. The intervention committee selected video safety messages featuring African American actors as the most culturally relevant cyber...

  13. Impact and consequences of evapotranspiration changes on water resources availability in the arid Zhangye Basin, China

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jin, X.; Schaepman, M.E.; Clevers, J.G.P.W.; Su, Z.

    2009-01-01

    Evapotranspiration (ET) plays an important role in the hydrological cycle and it is essential to estimate ET accurately for the evaluation of available water resources. This is most important in arid and semi-arid regions. In this paper, the long-term changes in daily ET in the semi-arid Zhangye

  14. Effects of environmental conditions on soil salinity and arid region in Tunisia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ben Ahmed, C.; Ben Rouina, B.; Boukhris, M.

    2009-01-01

    The shortage of water resources of good water quality is becoming an issue in the arid and semi arid regions. for this reason, the use of water resources of marginal quality such as treated wastewater and saline groundwater has become and important consideration, particularly in arid region in Tunisia, where large quantities of saline water are used for irrigation. (Author)

  15. International Arid Lands Consortium: Better land stewardship in water and watershed management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peter F. Ffolliott; James T. Fisher; Menachem Sachs; Darrell W. DeBoer; Jeffrey O. Dawson; Timothy E. Fulbright; John Tracy

    2000-01-01

    The International Arid Lands Consortium (IALC) was established in 1990 to promote research, education, and training for the development, management, and restoration of arid and semi-arid lands throughout the world. One activity of IALC members and cooperators is to support research and development and demonstration projects that enhance management of these fragile...

  16. Temporal and Spatial Distribution of Ecological Security in Arid Region Based on GIS: A Case Study in Xinjiang

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Q.; Song, W.; Yang, J.

    2017-12-01

    Ecological security is close related to the people's survival and development. In the context of the global warming, with the increasingly frequent human activities, ecological and environmental problems have become increasingly prominent. Ecological security has aroused widespread concern, especially in the arid region. It has an important role in national security as well as political security, military security, economic security, social security. Taken Xinjiang as the research area, which is a typical arid region in China, this study establishes an ecological safety assessment indicator system from perspective of the generic process and the formation mechanism of the ecosystem. The framework is based on natural resources dimensions, natural environment dimensions and human disturbance dimensions. Water is the restrictive factor for the development of arid region, so the water resources carrying capacity is the main natural resource of the study area. The natural environment includes SPI(standardized precipitation index), dryness index, landscape vulnerability, NDVI. Human disturbance includes urbanization rate, population density, afforestation area, per capita GDP, water-saving irrigation area, fertilizer and pesticide application, agriculture Mechanical power, energy consumption. The expert scoring method and the coefficient of variation method are used to determine the weight of each indicator, and finally a comprehensive index is constructed to evaluate the ecological security of Xinjiang, that is, the ecological security index. The results indicate that the ecological security of Xinjiang is 0.43, which is in the critical area. The ecological security of Hami, Turpan and Karamay is the lowest, and the ecological security of the Arabian and Yili is the highest. The ecological security of the south in the Xinjiang is higher than that in the north. In short, ecological environment of Xinjiang is in a sensitive period. Effective ecological protection policy

  17. Distinctive channel geometry and riparian vegetation: A geomorphic classification for arid ephemeral streams

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sutfin, N.; Shaw, J. R.; Wohl, E. E.; Cooper, D.

    2012-12-01

    Interactions between hydrology, channel form, and riparian vegetation along arid ephemeral streams are not thoroughly understood and current stream classifications do not adequately represent variability in channel geometry and associated riparian communities. Relatively infrequent hydrologic disturbances in dryland environments are responsible for creation and maintenance of channel form that supports riparian communities. To investigate the influence of channel characteristics on riparian vegetation in the arid southwestern United States, we develop a geomorphic classification for arid ephemeral streams based on the degree of confinement and the composition of confining material that provide constraints on available moisture. Our conceptual model includes five stream types: 1) bedrock channels entirely confined by exposed bedrock and devoid of persistent alluvium; 2) bedrock with alluvium channels at least partially confined by bedrock but containing enough alluvium to create bedforms that persist through time; 3) incised alluvium channels bound only by unconsolidated alluvial material into which they are incised; 4) braided washes that exhibit multi-thread, braided characteristics regardless of the composition of confining material; and 5) piedmont headwater 0-2nd order streams (Strahler) confined only by unconsolidated alluvium and which initiate as secondary channels on piedmont surfaces. Eighty-six study reaches representing the five stream types were surveyed on the U.S. Army Yuma Proving Ground in the Sonoran Desert of southwestern Arizona. Non-parametric multivariate analysis of variance (PERMANOVA) indicates significant differences between the five stream types with regards to channel geometry (i.e., stream gradient, width-to-depth ratio, the ratio between valley width and channel width (Wv/Wc), shear stress, and unit stream power) and riparian vegetation (i.e., presence and canopy coverage by species, canopy stratum, and life form). Discriminant analysis

  18. Modelling annual evapotranspiration in a semi-arid, African savanna ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Accurately measuring evapotranspiration (ET) is essential if we are to derive reasonable estimates of production and water use for semi-arid savannas. Estimates of ET are also important in defining the health of an ecosystem and the quantity of water used by the vegetation when preparing a catchment-scale water balance.

  19. On dew and micrometeorology in an arid coastal ecosystem

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heusinkveld, B.G.

    2008-01-01

    This study investigated intriguing aspects of dew within a sandy arid ecosystem situated in the NW Negev desert, Israel. The goal was to quantify dew formation and evaporation processes through sensor design, field measurements and modelling. To do this, two new sensors were developed. The first

  20. Hypogeous fungi from Southern Spanish semi-arid lands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Honrubia, M.; Cano, A.; Molina-Niñirola, C.

    1992-01-01

    Six hypogeous fungi of Ascomycotina and Basidiomycotina have been studied from semiarid zones in Southern Spain. Melanogaster variegatus (Vitt.) Tul. is recorded for the first time from Spain. Picoa juniperi Vitt. and Terfezia claveryi Chat. are revealed as the most frequent species in semi-arid

  1. Determining Dry Matter Degradability of Some Semi-Arid Browse ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    acer

    ABSTRACT: The in vitro gas production of some semi-arid browse species were evaluated. The relationship between in ... between in vitro gas measured on incubation of browse leaves and that calculated from SCFA allows the prediction of SCFA from ... with concentrate feed (40% corn, 10% wheat offal, 10% palm kernel ...

  2. Evaporation as the transport mechanism of metals in arid regions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lima, A.T.; Safar, Z.; Loch, J.P.G.

    Soils of arid regions are exposed to drought and drastic temperature oscillations throughout the year. Transport mechanisms in these soils are therefore very different from the ones in temperate regions, where rain dictates the fate of most elements in soils. Due to the low rainfall and high

  3. Determining termite diversity in arid Namibian rangelands – a ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Three methods of sampling termite diversity in arid rangelands were tested in Namibia during the wet (March) and dry (October) seasons of 1998. Six sites were chosen: one pair on each of three farms representing a gradient of land use intensity. At each site, two adjacent plots of 1 ha each were sampled: one plot by a ...

  4. Adaptation at Scale in Semi-Arid Regions | IDRC - International ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    People living in Africa and South Asia's semi-arid regions face challenges that hinder their economic growth and development. This project seeks to find proactive, longer-term approaches to climate change adaptation in these vulnerable regions, while helping locals manage existing risks. Short-term focus must shift. So far ...

  5. THE SURFACE WATER STORAGE PROBLEM IN ARID REGIONS:

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    H. Benfetta

    2017-09-01

    Sep 1, 2017 ... This dam is located in an arid zone where water resources are becoming increasingly scarce. It is situated 5 km ... Leakage leads to considerable losses of valuable, scarce water. ...... Detection of water leaks in the restraints ...

  6. Evaporation as the transport mechanism of metals in arid regions

    KAUST Repository

    Lima, Ana T.

    2014-09-01

    Soils of arid regions are exposed to drought and drastic temperature oscillations throughout the year. Transport mechanisms in these soils are therefore very different from the ones in temperate regions, where rain dictates the fate of most elements in soils. Due to the low rainfall and high evaporation rates in arid regions, groundwater quality is not threatened and all soil contamination issues tend to be overlooked. But if soil contamination happens, where do contaminants go? This study tests the hypothesis of upward metal movement in soils when evaporation is the main transport mechanism. Laboratory evaporation tests were carried out with heavy metal spiked Saudi soil, using circulation of air as the driving force (Fig. 1). Main results show that loamy soil retains heavy metals quite well while evaporation drives heavy metals to the surface of a sandy soil. Evaporation transports heavy metals upward in sandy soils of arid regions, making them accumulate at the soil surface. Sand being the dominating type of soil in arid regions, soils can then be a potential source of contaminated aerosols and atmospheric pollution - a transboundary problem. Some other repercussions for this problem are foreseen, such as the public ingestion or inhalation of dust. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd.

  7. Characterization of lactic acid bacteria isolated from Algerian arid ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Diversity and density of lactic acid bacteria isolated from Algerian raw goats\\' milk in arid zones were studied by determination of morphological, cultural, physiological and biochemical characteristics. 206 lactic acid bacterial strains were isolated, with 115 of them belonging to lactic acid cocci and others to the genus, ...

  8. Simulation of water use and herbage growth in arid regions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Keulen, van H.

    1975-01-01

    The and and semi-arid regions of the world, totalling about 30% of the land surface of the earth, are predominantly used for extensive grazing, as low and erratic rainfall presents too high a risk for arable farming. The population that can be sustained by the animal products -meat, milk or

  9. Paclobutrazol biodegradation in unsaturated soil in the Semi-Arid ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Paclobutrazol (PBZ) is a plant growth regulator, increasing flowe ring and yield that is widely used in mango cultivation in the semi-arid northeastern Brazil. PBZ remains active in the soil for several years. However, it can severely affect the growth and development of subsequent crops, mainly by reducing vegetative vigor.

  10. Rates of wood and dung disintegration in arid South African ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Dead shrubs lying on the soil surface in an arid shrubland in the southern Karoo have half-lives of 9 to 18 years depending on wood density which varies among species. Dung pellets of sheep and springbok can remain intact on the soil surface in Karoo shrubland and desert grassland for five years or more. Highlights the ...

  11. Humid to arid to subhumid vegetation shift on Pilliga Sandstone, Ulungra Springs, New South Wales

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dodson, J. R.; Wright, R. V. S.

    1989-09-01

    The Pilliga Sandstone region of the northwest slope of New South Wales has a natural vegetation cover of sclerophyllous relatively closed to open forests with a largely heathy understorey, and a warm, subhumid and continental climate. Pollen analysis of spring-fed deposits gives a vegetation history extending from at least 30,000 yr B.P. to the late Holocene. Tree pollen became scarce after about 25,000 yr B.P. and an assemblage dominated by Chenopodiaceae, Liguliflorae, Tubuliflorae, and probably Poaceae developed. No similar assemblage is known from present pollen rain studies carried out in Australia. However, it clearly represents a treeless open shrub-steppe formation and therefore an arid or semiarid environment. The site thus provides evidence of an eastward late Pleistocene extension of the arid zone in Australia, and is the first full-glacial vegetation record between 20° and 35° latitude in Australia. The present vegetation cover did not become reestablished until the beginning of the Holocene, which raises questions about the form in which Pilliga Sandstone vegetation survived full-glacial conditions.

  12. Fluvial system response to Late Devensian (Weichselian) aridity, Baston, Lincolnshire, England

    Science.gov (United States)

    Briant, Rebecca M.; Coope, G. Russell; Preece, Richard C.; Keen, David H.; Boreham, Steve; Griffiths, Huw I.; Seddon, Mary B.; Gibbard, Philip L.

    2004-07-01

    Little is known about the impact of Late Devensian (Weichselian) aridity on lowland British landscapes, largely because they lack the widespread coversand deposits of the adjacent continent. The concentration of large interformational ice-wedge casts in the upper part of many Devensian fluvial sequences suggests that fluvial activity may have decreased considerably during this time. The development of optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) dating enables this period of ice-wedge cast formation to be constrained for the first time in eastern England, where a marked horizon of ice-wedge casts is found between two distinctive dateable facies associations. Contrasts between this horizon and adjacent sediments show clear changes in environment and fluvial system behaviour in response to changing water supply, in line with palaeontological evidence. In addition to providing chronological control on the period of ice-wedge formation, the study shows good agreement of the radiocarbon and OSL dating techniques during the Middle and Late Devensian, with direct comparison of these techniques beyond 15 000 yr for the first time in Britain. It is suggested that aridity during the Late Devensian forced a significant decrease in fluvial activity compared with preceding and following periods, initiating a system with low peak flows and widespread permafrost development. Copyright

  13. The Limits to Relevance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Averill, M.; Briggle, A.

    2006-12-01

    Science policy and knowledge production lately have taken a pragmatic turn. Funding agencies increasingly are requiring scientists to explain the relevance of their work to society. This stems in part from mounting critiques of the "linear model" of knowledge production in which scientists operating according to their own interests or disciplinary standards are presumed to automatically produce knowledge that is of relevance outside of their narrow communities. Many contend that funded scientific research should be linked more directly to societal goals, which implies a shift in the kind of research that will be funded. While both authors support the concept of useful science, we question the exact meaning of "relevance" and the wisdom of allowing it to control research agendas. We hope to contribute to the conversation by thinking more critically about the meaning and limits of the term "relevance" and the trade-offs implicit in a narrow utilitarian approach. The paper will consider which interests tend to be privileged by an emphasis on relevance and address issues such as whose goals ought to be pursued and why, and who gets to decide. We will consider how relevance, narrowly construed, may actually limit the ultimate utility of scientific research. The paper also will reflect on the worthiness of research goals themselves and their relationship to a broader view of what it means to be human and to live in society. Just as there is more to being human than the pragmatic demands of daily life, there is more at issue with knowledge production than finding the most efficient ways to satisfy consumer preferences or fix near-term policy problems. We will conclude by calling for a balanced approach to funding research that addresses society's most pressing needs but also supports innovative research with less immediately apparent application.

  14. Relevant Subspace Clustering

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Müller, Emmanuel; Assent, Ira; Günnemann, Stephan

    2009-01-01

    Subspace clustering aims at detecting clusters in any subspace projection of a high dimensional space. As the number of possible subspace projections is exponential in the number of dimensions, the result is often tremendously large. Recent approaches fail to reduce results to relevant subspace...... clusters. Their results are typically highly redundant, i.e. many clusters are detected multiple times in several projections. In this work, we propose a novel model for relevant subspace clustering (RESCU). We present a global optimization which detects the most interesting non-redundant subspace clusters...... achieves top clustering quality while competing approaches show greatly varying performance....

  15. Causes of early Holocene desertification in arid central Asia

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jin, Liya [Lanzhou University, Key Laboratory of Western China' s Environmental System, Lanzhou, Gansu (China); University of Kiel, Institute of Geosciences, Kiel (Germany); Chen, Fahu [Lanzhou University, Key Laboratory of Western China' s Environmental System, Lanzhou, Gansu (China); Morrill, Carrie [University of Colorado, Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences, Boulder, CO (United States); NOAA' s National Climatic Data Center, Paleoclimatology Branch, Boulder, CO (United States); Otto-Bliesner, Bette L.; Rosenbloom, Nan [National Center for Atmospheric Research, Climate and Global Dynamics Division, Boulder, CO (United States)

    2012-04-15

    Paleoclimate records of effective moisture (precipitation minus evaporation, or P-E) show a dry (low effective moisture) period in mid-latitude arid/semi-arid central Asia during the early Holocene (11,000-8,000 years ago) relative to the middle and late Holocene, in contrast to evidence for greater-than-present precipitation at the same time in the south and east Asian monsoonal areas. To investigate the spatial differences in climate response over mid-latitude central Asia and monsoonal Asia we conducted a series of simulations with the Community Climate System Model version 3 coupled climate model for the early, middle and late Holocene. The simulations test the climatic impact of all important forcings for the early Holocene, including changes in orbital parameters, the presence of the remnant Laurentide ice sheet and deglacial freshening of the North Atlantic. Model results clearly show the early Holocene patterns indicated by proxy records, including both the decreased effective moisture in arid central Asia, which occurs in the model primarily during the winter months, and the increase in summer monsoon precipitation in south and east Asia. The model results suggest that dry conditions in the early Holocene in central Asia are closely related to decreased water vapor advection due to reduced westerly wind speed and less evaporation upstream from the Mediterranean, Black, and Caspian Seas in boreal winter. As an extra forcing to the early Holocene climate system, the Laurentide ice sheet and meltwater fluxes have a substantial cooling effect over high latitudes, especially just over and downstream of the ice sheets, but contribute only to a small degree to the early Holocene aridity in central Asia. Instead, most of the effective moisture signal can be explained by orbital forcing decreasing the early Holocene latitudinal temperature gradient and wintertime surface temperature. We find little evidence for regional subsidence related to a stronger summer Asian

  16. Plant Communities Suitable for Green Roofs in Arid Regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rachel Gioannini

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available In extensive green roof settings, plant communities can be more robust than monocultures. In addition, native plants might be hardier and more ecologically sound choices than non-native plants in green roof systems. The objectives of this research were to (1 compare the performance of plant communities with that of monocultures and (2 compare the growth of natives to non-natives in a simulated green roof setting. We conducted a two-year experiment at an outdoor site in a desert environment using four plant morphological types (groundcover, forb, succulent and grass. Native plants selected were Chrysactinia mexicana, Melampodium leucanthum, Euphorbia antisyphilitica, and Nassella tenuissima, and non-natives were Delosperma nubigenum, Stachys byzantina, Sedum kamtschiaticum and Festuca glauca. Plants were assigned randomly to either monoculture or community and grown in 1 m × 1 m custom-built trays filled with 15 cm of a proprietary blend of 50/20/30 lightweight aggregate/sand/compost (by volume. Native forb, Melampodium, in community had greater coverage for four of the five measurements in the first year over native forb in monoculture and non-native forb regardless of setting. Native forb coverage was also greater than non-native forb for three of the four measurements in year 2, regardless of setting. Coverage of native grass was significantly greater than non-native grasses throughout the experiment. Coverage was also greater for eight of nine measurements for native succulent over non-natives succulent. However, non-native groundcover coverage was significantly greater than native groundcover for seven of nine measurements. On 1 November 2016, relative water content (RWC for succulents (p = 0.0424 was greatest for native Euphorbia in monoculture at 88%. Native Euphorbia also had greater RWC than non-native Sedum on 4 April 2017 (78% and 4 July 2017 (80%. However, non-native Sedum had greater root length (6548 cm, root dry weight (12.1 g

  17. Spatial and temporal variability of Aridity Index in Greece

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nastos, Panagiotis; Politi, Nadia; Douvis, Kostas

    2010-05-01

    Drought events have deteriorated in most European regions during the last decades in frequency, duration, or intensity. Besides, increased drying associated with higher temperatures and decreased precipitation have contributed to changes in drought. Drought-affected areas are projected to increase in extent, with the potential for adverse impacts on multiple sectors, e.g. agriculture, water supply, energy production and health, according to IPCC. The objective of this study is the spatial and temporal variability of the Aridity Index (AI) per decade, in Greece during the period 1951-2000, as far as the projections of AI for the period 2051-2100, based on simulations of ensemble regional climate models (RCMs), for A1B SRES scenario. The climatic data used for the analysis concern monthly values of precipitation and air temperature from 28 meteorological stations; 22 stations from the National Hellenic Meteorological Service and 6 stations from neighboring countries. According to the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), AI is defined as P/PET, where P is the average annual precipitation and PET is the potential evapotranspiration, estimated by the Thornthwaite method; PET and P must be expressed in same units, e.g., in milimetres. All the meteorological data processing was carried out by the application of Geographical Information System (GIS). The results of the analysis showed that within the examined period a clear shift from "humid" class that characterized the greater area of Greece in 1950's to "sub-humid" and "semi-dry" classes appeared in mainly the eastern regions of Greece, such as eastern Crete Island, Cyclades Islands, Evia and Attica in 1990's. The future projections derived by the simulations of ensemble RCMs indicated that drier conditions are very likely to appear in Greece associated with significant socio-economic consequences. The decreasing precipitation along with the high rates of evapotranspiration, because of increase in the air

  18. Evolutionary relevance facilitates visual information processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, Russell E; Calvillo, Dusti P

    2013-11-03

    Visual search of the environment is a fundamental human behavior that perceptual load affects powerfully. Previously investigated means for overcoming the inhibitions of high perceptual load, however, generalize poorly to real-world human behavior. We hypothesized that humans would process evolutionarily relevant stimuli more efficiently than evolutionarily novel stimuli, and evolutionary relevance would mitigate the repercussions of high perceptual load during visual search. Animacy is a significant component to evolutionary relevance of visual stimuli because perceiving animate entities is time-sensitive in ways that pose significant evolutionary consequences. Participants completing a visual search task located evolutionarily relevant and animate objects fastest and with the least impact of high perceptual load. Evolutionarily novel and inanimate objects were located slowest and with the highest impact of perceptual load. Evolutionary relevance may importantly affect everyday visual information processing.

  19. Evolutionary Relevance Facilitates Visual Information Processing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Russell E. Jackson

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available Visual search of the environment is a fundamental human behavior that perceptual load affects powerfully. Previously investigated means for overcoming the inhibitions of high perceptual load, however, generalize poorly to real-world human behavior. We hypothesized that humans would process evolutionarily relevant stimuli more efficiently than evolutionarily novel stimuli, and evolutionary relevance would mitigate the repercussions of high perceptual load during visual search. Animacy is a significant component to evolutionary relevance of visual stimuli because perceiving animate entities is time-sensitive in ways that pose significant evolutionary consequences. Participants completing a visual search task located evolutionarily relevant and animate objects fastest and with the least impact of high perceptual load. Evolutionarily novel and inanimate objects were located slowest and with the highest impact of perceptual load. Evolutionary relevance may importantly affect everyday visual information processing.

  20. Neutrophil programming dynamics and its disease relevance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ran, Taojing; Geng, Shuo; Li, Liwu

    2017-11-01

    Neutrophils are traditionally considered as first responders to infection and provide antimicrobial host defense. However, recent advances indicate that neutrophils are also critically involved in the modulation of host immune environments by dynamically adopting distinct functional states. Functionally diverse neutrophil subsets are increasingly recognized as critical components mediating host pathophysiology. Despite its emerging significance, molecular mechanisms as well as functional relevance of dynamically programmed neutrophils remain to be better defined. The increasing complexity of neutrophil functions may require integrative studies that address programming dynamics of neutrophils and their pathophysiological relevance. This review aims to provide an update on the emerging topics of neutrophil programming dynamics as well as their functional relevance in diseases.

  1. A Tool for the Evaluation of Irrigation Water Quality in the Arid and Semi-Arid Regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lucia Bortolini

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available In the Mediterranean arid and semi-arid regions, large amounts of low quality waters could be used for crop irrigation, but the adoption of articulated classifications with too rigid quality limits can often reduce the recoverable quantities of water and make the monitoring of water quality too much expensive. Therefore, an evaluation of irrigation water quality based on only a few crucial parameters, which consider the crop species to be irrigated and the type of irrigation system and management adopted, can be an easy and flexible method for maximizing the reuse of wastewater and low-quality water for agricultural purposes. In this view, an irrigation water quality tool (IWQT was developed to support farmers of arid and semi-arid regions on evaluating the use of low quality water for crop irrigation. The most significant and cheapest parameters of irrigation water quality were identified and clustered in three quality classes according to their effects on crop yield and soil fertility (agronomic quality indicators, human health (hygiene and health quality indicators, and irrigation systems (management quality indicators. According to IWQT parameters, a tool reporting a series of recommendations, including water treatment types, was implemented to guide farmers on the use of low quality irrigation water.

  2. Management of nutrients and water in rainfed arid and semi-arid areas. Proceedings of a consultants meeting

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1998-07-01

    Sustainable food security is needed for the arid and semi-arid regions of the tropical, subtropical and warm-temperate climatic zones. In these regions the supply of locally grown food is unreliable because much of it is produced in conditions of highly variable rainfall. Even in favourable seasons, these regions re becoming increasingly dependent on imported food. The IAEA's involvement in field studies on soil-water use dates back several years. A five year Co-ordinated Research Project on ''The Use of Nuclear and Related Techniques in Assessment of Irrigation Schedules of Field Crops to Increase Effective Use of Water in Irrigation Projects''. That project, completed in 1995, laid a solid foundation for future research. Because of a scarcity of water in many developing countries and increasing needs for sustainable food security in the face of increasing populations and lack of funds for irrigation schemes of significant dimension, research must focus on improved management of (i) the modest quantities of fertilizers that are available to farmers, (ii) the natural resources that are available to farmers for increasing soil organic matter content, and (iii) rain water. The Joint FAO/IAEA Division of Nuclear Techniques in Food and Agriculture held a Consultants Meeting on Management of Nutrients and Water in Rainfed Arid and Semi-Arid Areas for Increasing Crop Production, 26-29 May 1997

  3. Crop Upgrading Strategies and Modelling for Rainfed Cereals in a Semi-Arid Climate—A Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Festo Richard Silungwe

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available Spatiotemporal rainfall variability and low soil fertility are the primary crop production challenges facing poor farmers in semi-arid environments. However, there are few solutions for addressing these challenges. The literature provides several crop upgrading strategies (UPS for improving crop yields, and biophysical models are used to simulate these strategies. However, the suitability of UPS is limited by systemization of their areas of application and the need to cope with the challenges faced by poor farmers. In this study, we reviewed 187 papers from peer-reviewed journals, conferences and reports that discuss UPS suitable for cereals and biophysical models used to assist in the selection of UPS in semi-arid areas. We found that four UPS were the most suitable, namely tied ridges, microdose fertilization, varying sowing dates, and field scattering. The DSSAT, APSIM and AquaCrop models adequately simulate these UPS. This work provides a systemization of crop UPS and models in semi-arid areas that can be applied by scientists and planners.

  4. Interaction of water components in the semi-arid Huasco and Limarí river basins, North Central Chile

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Strauch

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available For sustainable water resource management in semi-arid regions, sound information is required about interactions between the different components of the water system: rain/snow precipitation, surface/subsurface run-off, groundwater recharge. Exemplarily, the Huasco and Limarí river basins as water stressed river catchments have been studied by isotope and hydrochemical methods for (i the origin of water, (ii water quality, (iii relations of surface and groundwater.

    Applying the complex multi-isotopic and hydrochemical methodology to the water components of the Huasco and Limarí basins, a differentiation of water components concerning subsurface flow and river water along the catchment area and by anthropogenic impacts are detected. Sulphate and nitrate concentrations indicate remarkable input from mining and agricultural activities along the river catchment.

    The 2H-18O relations of river water and groundwater of both catchments point to the behaviour of river waters originated in an arid to semi-arid environment.

    Consequently, the groundwater from several production wells in the lower parts of the catchments is related to the rivers where the wells located, however, it can be distinguished from the river water. Using the hydrological water balance and the isotope mixing model, the interaction between surface and subsurface flows and river flow is estimated.

  5. Is Information Still Relevant?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Lia

    2013-01-01

    Introduction: The term "information" in information science does not share the characteristics of those of a nomenclature: it does not bear a generally accepted definition and it does not serve as the bases and assumptions for research studies. As the data deluge has arrived, is the concept of information still relevant for information…

  6. Hourly Wind Speed Interval Prediction in Arid Regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaouch, M.; Ouarda, T.

    2013-12-01

    The long and extended warm and dry summers, the low rate of rain and humidity are the main factors that explain the increase of electricity consumption in hot arid regions. In such regions, the ventilating and air-conditioning installations, that are typically the most energy-intensive among energy consumption activities, are essential for securing healthy, safe and suitable indoor thermal conditions for building occupants and stored materials. The use of renewable energy resources such as solar and wind represents one of the most relevant solutions to overcome the increase of the electricity demand challenge. In the recent years, wind energy is gaining more importance among the researchers worldwide. Wind energy is intermittent in nature and hence the power system scheduling and dynamic control of wind turbine requires an estimate of wind energy. Accurate forecast of wind speed is a challenging task for the wind energy research field. In fact, due to the large variability of wind speed caused by the unpredictable and dynamic nature of the earth's atmosphere, there are many fluctuations in wind power production. This inherent variability of wind speed is the main cause of the uncertainty observed in wind power generation. Furthermore, producing wind power forecasts might be obtained indirectly by modeling the wind speed series and then transforming the forecasts through a power curve. Wind speed forecasting techniques have received substantial attention recently and several models have been developed. Basically two main approaches have been proposed in the literature: (1) physical models such as Numerical Weather Forecast and (2) statistical models such as Autoregressive integrated moving average (ARIMA) models, Neural Networks. While the initial focus in the literature has been on point forecasts, the need to quantify forecast uncertainty and communicate the risk of extreme ramp events has led to an interest in producing probabilistic forecasts. In short term

  7. Use of carbon isotope analysis to understand semi-arid erosion dynamics and long-term semi-arid land degradation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turnbull, Laura; Brazier, Richard E; Wainwright, John; Dixon, Liz; Bol, Roland

    2008-06-01

    Many semi-arid areas worldwide are becoming degraded, in the form of C(4) grasslands being replaced by C(3) shrublands, which causes an increase in surface runoff and erosion, and altered nutrient cycling, which may affect global biogeochemical cycling. The prevention or control of vegetation transitions is hindered by a lack of understanding of their temporal and spatial dynamics, particularly in terms of interactions between biotic and abiotic processes. This research investigates (1) the effects of soil erosion on the delta(13)C values of soil organic matter (SOM) throughout the soil profile and its implications for reconstructing vegetation change using carbon-isotope analysis and (2) the spatial properties of erosion over a grass-shrub transition to increase understanding of biotic-abiotic interactions by using delta(13)C signals of eroded material as a sediment tracer. Results demonstrate that the soils over grass-shrub transitions are not in steady state. A complex interplay of factors determines the input of SOM to the surface horizon of the soil and its subsequent retention and turnover through the soil profile. A positive correlation between event runoff and delta(13)C signatures of eroded sediment was found in all plots. This indicates that the delta(13)C signatures of eroded sediment may provide a means of distinguishing between changes in erosion dynamics over runoff events of different magnitudes and over different vegetation types. The development of this technique using delta(13)C signatures of eroded sediment provides a new means of furthering existing understanding of erosion dynamics over vegetation transitions. This is critical in terms of understanding biotic-abiotic feedbacks and the evolution of areas subject to vegetation change in semi-arid environments. John Wiley & Sons, Ltd

  8. Genomic and proteomic characterization of ARID1A chromatin remodeller in ampullary tumors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nastase, Anca; Teo, Jin Yao; Heng, Hong Lee; Ng, Cedric Chuan Young; Myint, Swe Swe; Rajasegaran, Vikneswari; Loh, Jia Liang; Lee, Ser Yee; Ooi, London Lucien; Chung, Alexander Yaw Fui; Chow, Pierce Kah Hoe; Cheow, Peng Chung; Wan, Wei Keat; Azhar, Rafy; Khoo, Avery; Xiu, Sam Xin; Alkaff, Syed Muhammad Fahmy; Cutcutache, Ioana; Lim, Jing Quan; Ong, Choon Kiat; Herlea, Vlad; Dima, Simona; Duda, Dan G; Teh, Bin Tean; Popescu, Irinel; Lim, Tony Kiat Hon

    2017-01-01

    AT rich interactive domain 1A (ARID1A) is one of the most commonly mutated genes in a broad variety of tumors. The mechanisms that involve ARID1A in ampullary cancer progression remains elusive. Here, we evaluated the frequency of ARID1A and KRAS mutations in ampullary adenomas and adenocarcinomas and in duodenal adenocarcinomas from two cohorts of patients from Singapore and Romania, correlated with clinical and pathological tumor features, and assessed the functional role of ARID1A . In the ampullary adenocarcinomas, the frequency of KRAS and ARID1A mutations was 34.7% and 8.2% respectively, with a loss or reduction of ARID1A protein in 17.2% of the cases. ARID1A mutational status was significantly correlated with ARID1A protein expression level (P=0.023). There was a significant difference in frequency of ARID1A mutation between Romania and Singapore (2.7% versus 25%, P=0.04), suggestive of different etiologies. One somatic mutation was detected in the ampullary adenoma group. In vitro studies indicated the tumor suppressive role of ARID1A . Our results warrant further investigation of this chromatin remodeller as a potential early biomarker of the disease, as well as identification of therapeutic targets in ARID1A mutated ampullary cancers.

  9. Essential Roles for ARID1B in Dendritic Arborization and Spine Morphology of Developing Pyramidal Neurons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ka, Minhan; Chopra, Divyan A.; Dravid, Shashank M.

    2016-01-01

    De novo truncating mutations in ARID1B, a chromatin-remodeling gene, cause Coffin–Siris syndrome, a developmental disorder characterized by intellectual disability and speech impairment; however, how the genetic elimination leads to cognitive dysfunction remains unknown. Thus, we investigated the neural functions of ARID1B during brain development. Here, we show that ARID1B regulates dendritic differentiation in the developing mouse brain. We knocked down ARID1B expression in mouse pyramidal neurons using in utero gene delivery methodologies. ARID1B knockdown suppressed dendritic arborization of cortical and hippocampal pyramidal neurons in mice. The abnormal development of dendrites accompanied a decrease in dendritic outgrowth into layer I. Furthermore, knockdown of ARID1B resulted in aberrant dendritic spines and synaptic transmission. Finally, ARID1B deficiency led to altered expression of c-Fos and Arc, and overexpression of these factors rescued abnormal differentiation induced by ARID1B knockdown. Our results demonstrate a novel role for ARID1B in neuronal differentiation and provide new insights into the origin of cognitive dysfunction associated with developmental intellectual disability. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Haploinsufficiency of ARID1B, a component of chromatin remodeling complex, causes intellectual disability. However, the role of ARID1B in brain development is unknown. Here, we demonstrate that ARID1B is required for neuronal differentiation in the developing brain, such as in dendritic arborization and synapse formation. Our findings suggest that ARID1B plays a critical role in the establishment of cognitive circuitry by regulating dendritic complexity. Thus, ARID1B deficiency may cause intellectual disability via abnormal brain wiring induced by the defective differentiation of cortical neurons. PMID:26937011

  10. Clinical Relevance of Adipokines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthias Blüher

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available The incidence of obesity has increased dramatically during recent decades. Obesity increases the risk for metabolic and cardiovascular diseases and may therefore contribute to premature death. With increasing fat mass, secretion of adipose tissue derived bioactive molecules (adipokines changes towards a pro-inflammatory, diabetogenic and atherogenic pattern. Adipokines are involved in the regulation of appetite and satiety, energy expenditure, activity, endothelial function, hemostasis, blood pressure, insulin sensitivity, energy metabolism in insulin sensitive tissues, adipogenesis, fat distribution and insulin secretion in pancreatic β-cells. Therefore, adipokines are clinically relevant as biomarkers for fat distribution, adipose tissue function, liver fat content, insulin sensitivity, chronic inflammation and have the potential for future pharmacological treatment strategies for obesity and its related diseases. This review focuses on the clinical relevance of selected adipokines as markers or predictors of obesity related diseases and as potential therapeutic tools or targets in metabolic and cardiovascular diseases.

  11. Information Needs/Relevance

    OpenAIRE

    Wildemuth, Barbara M.

    2009-01-01

    A user's interaction with a DL is often initiated as the result of the user experiencing an information need of some kind. Aspects of that experience and how it might affect the user's interactions with the DL are discussed in this module. In addition, users continuously make decisions about and evaluations of the materials retrieved from a DL, relative to their information needs. Relevance judgments, and their relationship to the user's information needs, are discussed in this module. Draft

  12. Tertiary climate records from arid areas as indicated by isotopic signature of alunite

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Arehart, G.B.

    1997-01-01

    Alunite (ideally KAl 3 (SO 4 ) 2 (OH) 6 ] is a relatively common mineral in some hydrothermal systems as well as in the weathering environment in arid regions. Because of its composition, alunite is an ideal mineral for use in stable isotopic studies of all types. In particular, there is little or no hydrogen isotope fractionation between alunite formed at surficial temperatures and water from which it forms. Therefore, the isotopic composition (delta D) of this mineral reflect the isotopic composition of meteoric waters at the time of deposition, which can in turn be utilised to infer paleoclimatic information. In addition, the presence of K (and its decay products) allows simple and accurate determination of absolute ages for mineral deposition making alunite one of very few paleoclimate indicators that is directly datable. (author)

  13. Inferring relevance in a changing world

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert C Wilson

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Reinforcement learning models of human and animal learning usually concentrate on how we learn the relationship between different stimuli or actions and rewards. However, in real world situations stimuli are ill-defined. On the one hand, our immediate environment is extremely multi-dimensional. On the other hand, in every decision-making scenario only a few aspects of the environment are relevant for obtaining reward, while most are irrelevant. Thus a key question is how do we learn these relevant dimensions, that is, how do we learn what to learn about? We investigated this process of representation learning experimentally, using a task in which one stimulus dimension was relevant for determining reward at each point in time. As in real life situations, in our task the relevant dimension can change without warning, adding ever-present uncertainty engendered by a constantly changing environment. We show that human performance on this task is better described by a suboptimal strategy based on selective attention and serial hypothesis testing rather than a normative strategy based on probabilistic inference. From this, we conjecture that the problem of inferring relevance in general scenarios is too computationally demanding for the brain to solve optimally. As a result the brain utilizes approximations, employing these even in simplified scenarios in which optimal representation learning is tractable, such as the one in our experiment.

  14. Modeling of hydrological processes in arid agricultural regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiang LI,Xiaomin MAO,Shaozhong KANG,David A. BARRY

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Understanding of hydrological processes, including consideration of interactions between vegetation growth and water transfer in the root zone, underpins efficient use of water resources in arid-zone agriculture. Water transfers take place in the soil-plant-atmosphere continuum, and include groundwater dynamics, unsaturated zone flow, evaporation/transpiration from vegetated/bare soil and surface water, agricultural canal/surface water flow and seepage, and well pumping. Models can be categorized into three classes: (1 regional distributed hydrological models with various land uses, (2 groundwater-soil-plant-atmosphere continuum models that neglect lateral water fluxes, and (3 coupled models with groundwater flow and unsaturated zone water dynamics. This review highlights, in addition, future research challenges in modeling arid-zone agricultural systems, e.g., to effectively assimilate data from remote sensing, and to fully reflect climate change effects at various model scales.

  15. Domesticated proboscidea parviflora: a potential oilseed crop for arid lands

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Berry, J.; Bretting, P.K.; Nabhan, G.P.; Weber, C.

    1981-01-01

    Wild and domesticated Proboscidea parviflora were evaluated as oilseed crops for arid lands through chemical and biological analyses. Domesticated plants grown in the Sonoran desert bore seed containing 35-40 per cent oil and 23-27 per cent protein. Yield per hectare was estimated at 1000 kg of oil and 675 kg of protein, quantities which compare favourably with other crops. An ephemeral life cycle and certain characteristics of the fruit and seed allow this plant to grow in xeric habitats unsuitable for many other plants. Several Proboscidea species hybridize with P. parviflora and could be used in future crop breeding. Rapid germination and higher oil and protein content of seed make the domesticated P. parviflora superior to the wild form as a crop. Domesticated P. parviflora thus shows promise as an oilseed crop for the Sonoran Desert and possibly for other arid regions. (Refs. 22).

  16. How Sustainable are Engineered Rivers in Arid Lands?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jurgen Schmandt

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Engineered rivers in arid lands play an important role in feeding the world’s growing population. Each continent has rivers that carry water from distant mountain sources to fertile soil downstream where rainfall is scarce. Over the course of the last century most rivers in arid lands have been equipped with large engineering structures that generate electric power and store water for agriculture and cities. This has changed the hydrology of the rivers. In this paper we discuss how climate variation, climate change, reservoir siltation, changes in land use and population growth will challenge the sustainability of engineered river systems over the course of the next few decades. We use the Rio Grande in North America, where we have worked with Mexican and American colleagues, to describe our methodology and results. Similar work is needed to study future water supply and demand in engineered rivers around the world.

  17. Semi-arid development: competitiveness factors in biodiesel productive chain

    OpenAIRE

    Breno Barros Telles do Carmo; Dmontier Pinheiro Aragão; Heráclito Lopes Jaguaribe Pontes; Bruno Magalhães Ribeiro; Marcos Ronaldo Albertin

    2009-01-01

    The new global market competitiveness considerer the competition between productive chains (PC) or supply chains, not just between enterprises. In this case, it can be observed collaboration and cooperation enterprises that dispute with others productives chain. The PC competitiveness can be impaired if is subject by inhibitors factors, that can impairer the performance. This paper analyses these competitiveness factors inhibitors in biodiesel productive chain (CPB) in semi-arid area: exporte...

  18. Wind power variations under humid and arid meteorological conditions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Şen, Zekâi

    2013-01-01

    Highlights: • It indicates the role of weather parameters’ roles in the wind energy calculation. • Meteorological variables are more significant in arid regions for wind power. • It provides opportunity to take into consideration air density variability. • Wind power is presented in terms of the wind speed, temperature and pressure. - Abstract: The classical wind power per rotor area per time is given as the half product of the air density by third power of the wind velocity. This approach adopts the standard air density as constant (1.23 g/cm 3 ), which ignores the density dependence on air temperature and pressure. Weather conditions are not taken into consideration except the variations in wind velocity. In general, increase in pressure and decrease in temperature cause increase in the wind power generation. The rate of increase in the pressure has less effect on the wind power as compared with the temperature rate. This paper provides the wind power formulation based on three meteorological variables as the wind velocity, air temperature and air pressure. Furthermore, from the meteorology point of view any change in the wind power is expressed as a function of partial changes in these meteorological variables. Additionally, weather conditions in humid and arid regions differ from each other, and it is interesting to see possible differences between the two regions. The application of the methodology is presented for two meteorology stations in Istanbul, Turkey, as representative of the humid regions and Al-Madinah Al-Monawwarah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, for arid region, both on daily record bases for 2010. It is found that consideration of air temperature and pressure in the average wind power calculation gives about 1.3% decrease in Istanbul, whereas it is about 13.7% in Al-Madinah Al-Monawwarah. Hence, consideration of meteorological variables in wind power calculations becomes more significant in arid regions

  19. Simulation of water-limited growth of the forage shrub saltbush (Atriplex nummularia Lindl.) in a low-rainfall environment of southern Australia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Descheemaeker, K.K.E.; Smith, A.P.; Robertson, M.J.; Whitbread, A.; Huth, N.I.; Davoren, W.; Emms, J.; Llewellyn, R.

    2014-01-01

    Old man saltbush (Atriplex nummularia Lindl.) is a useful forage shrub for livestock in the low-rainfall areas of the world, and particularly in Australia. In these semi-arid and arid environments, saltbush is valuable for increasing the production from otherwise marginal areas of the farm and

  20. SC-HTGR Performance Impact for Arid Sites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lommers, L.; Geschwindt, J.; Southworth, F.; Shahrokhi, F.

    2014-01-01

    The SC-HTGR provides high temperature steam which can support industrial process heat applications as well as high efficiency electricity generation. The increased generating efficiency resulting from using high steam temperature provides greater plant output than lower temperature concepts, and it also reduces the fraction of waste heat which must be rejected. This capability is particularly attractive for sites with little or no water for heat rejection. This high temperature capability provides greater flexibility for these sites, and it results in a smaller performance penalty than for lower temperature systems when dry cooling must be used. The performance of the SC-HTGR for a conventional site with wet cooling is discussed first. Then the performance for arid sites is evaluated. Dry cooling performance is evaluated for both moderately arid sites and very hot sites. Offdesign performance of the dry cooling system under extreme conditions is also considered. Finally, operating strategies are explored for sites where some cooling water may be available but only in very limited quantities. Results of these assessments confirm that the higher operating temperatures of the SC-HTGR are very beneficial for arid sites, providing significant advantages for both gross and net power generation. (author)

  1. Protocol for VOC-Arid ID remediation performance characterization

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tegner, B.J.; Hassig, N.L.; Last, G.V.

    1994-09-01

    The Volatile Organic Compound-Arid Integrated Demonstration (VOC-Arid ID) is a technology development program sponsored by the US Department of Energy's Office of Technology Development that is targeted to acquire, develop, demonstrate, and deploy new technologies for the remediation of VOC contaminants in the soils and groundwaters of arid DOE sites. Technologies cannot be adequately evaluated unless sufficient site characterization and technology performance data have been collection and analyzed. The responsibility for identifying these data needs has been placed largely on the Principal Investigators (PIs) developing the remediation technology, who usually are not experts in site characterization or in identification of appropriate sampling, analysis, and monitoring techniques to support the field testing. This document provides a protocol for planning the collection of data before, during, and after a test of a new technology. This generic protocol provides the PIs and project managers with a set of steps to follow. The protocol is based on a data collection planning process called the Data Quality Objectives (DQO) process, which was originally developed by the US Environmental Protection Agency and has been expanded by DOE to support site cleanup decisions. The DQO process focuses on the quality and quantity of data required to make decision. Stakeholders to the decisions must negotiate such key inputs to the process as the decision rules that will be used and the acceptable probabilities of making decision errors

  2. Environmental gradients across wetland vegetation groups in the arid slopes of Western Alborz Mountains, N. Iran

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Asghar Kamrani

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Mountain wetlands are unique ecosystems in the arid southern slopes of Alborz range, the second largest range in Iran. The spatial distribution characteristics of wetland vegetation in the arid region of the Alborz and the main factors affecting their distributional patterns were studied. A classification of vegetation and ecological characteristics were carried out using data extracted from 430 relevés in 90 wetland sites. The data were analyzed using Two Way Indicator Species Analysis (TWINSPAN and detrended correspondence analysis (DCA. The wetland vegetation of Alborz Mountain was classified into four large groups. The first vegetation group was calcareous rich vegetation, mainly distributed in the river banks and characterized by helophytes such as Bolboschoenus affinis as indicator species. The second group was saline transitional vegetation, distributed in the ecotone areas and dominated by Phragmites australis. The third vegetation group is wet meadow vegetation which mainly consists of geophytes, endemic and Irano-Turanian species, distributed in the higher altitudes. This vegetation is mainly characterized by indicator species such as Carex orbicularis, high level concentration of Fe2+ and percentage of organic matter in the soil. The fourth vegetation group is aquatic vegetation, distributed in the lakeshores. The aquatic group species are mainly hydrophytic such as Batrachium trichophyllum. The TWINSPAN vegetation groups could be also recognized in the DCA graphs and ecologically differentiated by ANOVA of studied variables. Four vegetation groups can be differentiated on two first axes of indirect ordination. There is a gradient of pH, EC and organic matter associated with altitude on the DCA diagram. Correlation analysis between the axes of DCA and environmental factors shows that altitude, soil texture and other dependant environmental variables (e.g. pH are the main environmental factors affecting the distribution of wetland

  3. External perforated window Solar Screens: The effect of screen depth and perforation ratio on energy performance in extreme desert environments

    KAUST Repository

    Sherif, A.; El-Zafarany, A.; Arafa, R.

    2012-01-01

    In hot arid desert environments, the solar radiation passing through windows increases the cooling loads and the energy consumption of buildings. Shading of windows can reduce these loads. Unlike the woven solar screens, wooden solar screens have a

  4. [Relevant public health enteropathogens].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riveros, Maribel; Ochoa, Theresa J

    2015-01-01

    Diarrhea remains the third leading cause of death in children under five years, despite recent advances in the management and prevention of this disease. It is caused by multiple pathogens, however, the prevalence of each varies by age group, geographical area and the scenario where cases (community vs hospital) are recorded. The most relevant pathogens in public health are those associated with the highest burden of disease, severity, complications and mortality. In our country, norovirus, Campylobacter and diarrheagenic E. coli are the most prevalent pathogens at the community level in children. In this paper we review the local epidemiology and potential areas of development in five selected pathogens: rotavirus, norovirus, Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC), Shigella and Salmonella. Of these, rotavirus is the most important in the pediatric population and the main agent responsible for child mortality from diarrhea. The introduction of rotavirus vaccination in Peru will have a significant impact on disease burden and mortality from diarrhea. However, surveillance studies are needed to determine the impact of vaccination and changes in the epidemiology of diarrhea in Peru following the introduction of new vaccines, as well as antibiotic resistance surveillance of clinical relevant bacteria.

  5. Jojoba, Simmondsia chinensis: an alternative for the economic development of the arid and semi arid zones of Mexico

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sepulveda Betancourt, J I; Parra Hake, H

    1976-01-01

    Simmondsia chinensis is, in spite of its name, a species indigenous to SE California and Arizona (US) and to the states of Sonora, Baja California Norte and Baja California Sur in Mexico. It is a shrubby forage plant that reaches a height of 1.5 m and can grow under conditions of extreme drought and high salinity provided that frost does not occur; it is thus suitable for many arid and semi-arid parts of Mexico as well as other similar regions of the world. The seed, traditionally associated with medicinal properties, was found in 1933 to produce a liquid wax with properties similar to those of sperm-whale oil, an increasingly scarce product used for the lubrication of machinery run at high temperatures and speeds. Some other uses for S. chinensis wax are listed, and silvicultural research on the species in progress in Baja California Sur and elsewhere is briefly described.

  6. Jojoba, Simmondsia chinensis. An alternative for the economic development of the arid and semi arid zones of Mexico

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sepulveda Betancourt, J I; Parra Hake, H

    1976-01-01

    S. chinensis is, in spite of its name, a species indigenous to SE California and Arizona (US) and to the states of Sonora, Baja California Norte and Baja California Sur in Mexico. It is a shrubby forage plant that reaches a height of 1.5 m and can grow under conditions of extreme drought and high salinity provided that frost does not occur; it is thus suitable for many arid and semi-arid parts of Mexico as well as other similar regions of the world. The seed, traditionally associated with medicinal properties, was found in 1933 to produce a liquid wax with properties similar to those of sperm-whale oil, an increasingly scarce product used for the lubrication of machinery run at high temperatures and speeds. Some other uses for S. chinensis wax are listed, and silvicultural research on the species in progress in Baja California Sur and elsewhere is briefly described.

  7. Plan and Some Results of "Advanced Study on Precipitation Enhancement in Arid and Semi-Arid Regions"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murakami, M.

    2016-12-01

    There are several technologies to secure water resources, including the desalination of seawater, recycling of industrial water and reuse of wastewater. However precipitation enhancement is the only way we can create a large amount of water for industrial use, for example, water for irrigation, provided we find clouds suitable for cloud seeding and apply appropriate and effective methods to increase precipitation. Therefore, rain enhancement research is critical in the quest for new water security options and innovative solutions in the UAE and other arid and semi-arid regions. The main objective of our project is to better evaluate, and ultimately improve, the effectiveness of rain enhancement in the UAE and other arid and semi-arid regions using hygroscopic and glaciogenic seeding techniques. One of the major questions regarding rain enhancement today is the effectiveness of hygroscopic seeding for warm and supercooled convective clouds. Our research will investigate the microphysical processes in seeded and unseeded clouds using a combination of laboratory experiments, numerical simulations and in-situ aircraft measurements in order to decipher the mechanism responsible for precipitation augmentation due to hygroscopic seeding. In our research, major elements of cloud seeding, e.g., assessment of seedability, development of optimal seeding methods and evaluation of seeding effects, will be investigated in the most efficient and realistic way, within three years, using mainly the numerical models with the sophisticated seeding scheme, which is developed on a basis of laboratory experiments and then validated against in-situ and remote sensing observations. In addition to the research plan, the outcomes of the research projects, which will be made available to the public at the end of the project and benefit the broader society, is discussed.

  8. Deep Soil Recharge in Arid and Semi-Arid Regions: New Evidences in MU-US Sandy Land of China

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Y.; Yang, W.; Zhan, H.

    2017-12-01

    Precipitation induced recharge is an important source of groundwater budget but it is very difficult to quantify in arid and semiarid regions. In this study, a newly invented lysimeter was used to monitor deep soil recharge (DSR) under 200 cm depth in MU-US sandy land in western China under three kinds of landforms (mobile dune, semi-fixed dune, and fixed dune). We found that the annual DSRs in such three different kinds of landforms varied significantly. Specifically, the annual DSRs were 224.1 mm (50.5% of the annual precipitation), 71.1 mm (50.5% of the annual precipitation), and 1.3 mm (0.3% of the annual precipitation) in mobile dune, semi-fixed dune, and fixed dune, respectively. We also found that vegetation coverage and precipitation pattern significantly affected DSR. A 24-hr precipitation event with the precipitation amount greater than 8 mm was able to infiltrate soil deeper than 200 cm and contributed to ground water recharge directly. Vegetation was a dominant factor influencing infiltration in the fixed sand dune. Our research revealed that precipitation induced DSR in arid and semi-arid regions was a complex process that required long-term monitoring and innovative system analysis of interrelated factors such as precipitation strength and pattern, meteorological parameters, and dynamic soil moisture. Key words: Precipitation pattern, sand dune groundwater, deep soil recharge, infiltration.

  9. VOC-Arid Integrated Demonstration guide to preparation of demonstration documents

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jensen, E.J.; Brouns, T.M.; Koegler, K.J.; McCabe, G.H.; Morris, F.A.

    1994-06-01

    This guide has been prepared by Demonstration Operations of the Volatile Organic Compound-Arid Integrated Demonstration (VOC-Arid ID). Its purpose is to describe demonstration documents, designate responsibilities for these documents, and guide the Principal Investigator (PI) and others in their preparation. The main emphasis of this guide is to describe the documentation required of the PI. However, it does cover some of the responsibilities of other members of the VOC-Arid ID team. The VOC-Arid ID is one of several US Department of Energy (DOE) integrated demonstrations designed to support the demonstration of emerging environmental management and restoration technologies. The principal objective of the VOC-Arid ID is to identify, develop, and demonstrate new and innovative technologies for environmental restoration at arid or semiarid sites containing volatile organic compounds with or without associated contamination (e.g., radionuclides and metals)

  10. Other relevant biological papers

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shimizu, M.

    1989-01-01

    A considerable number of CRESP-relevant papers concerning deep-sea biology and radioecology have been published. It is the purpose of this study to call attention to them. They fall into three general categories. The first is papers of general interest. They are mentioned only briefly, and include text references to the global bibliography at the end of the volume. The second are papers that are not only mentioned and referenced, but for various reasons are described in abstract form. The last is a list of papers compiled by H.S.J. Roe specifically for this volume. They are listed in bibliographic form, and are also included in the global bibliography at the end of the volume

  11. Confirmation of childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia variants, ARID5B and IKZF1, and interaction with parental environmental exposures.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tiffany-Jane Evans

    Full Text Available Genome wide association studies (GWAS have established association of ARID5B and IKZF1 variants with childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL. Epidemiological studies suggest that environmental factors alone appear to make a relatively minor contribution to disease risk. The polygenic nature of childhood ALL predisposition together with the timing of environmental triggers may hold vital clues for disease etiology. This study presents results from an Australian GWAS of childhood ALL cases (n = 358 and population controls (n = 1192. Furthermore, we utilised family trio (n = 204 genotypes to extend our investigation to gene-environment interaction of significant loci with parental exposures before conception, and child's sex and age. Thirteen SNPs achieved genome wide significance in the population based case/control analysis; ten annotated to ARID5B and three to IKZF1. The most significant SNPs in these regions were ARID5B rs4245595 (OR 1.63, CI 1.38-1.93, P = 2.13×10(-9, and IKZF1 rs1110701 (OR 1.69, CI 1.42-2.02, p = 7.26×10(-9. There was evidence of gene-environment interaction for risk genotype at IKZF1, whereby an apparently stronger genetic effect was observed if the mother took folic acid or if the father did not smoke prior to pregnancy (respective interaction P-values: 0.04, 0.05. There were no interactions of risk genotypes with age or sex (P-values >0.2. Our results evidence that interaction of genetic variants and environmental exposures may further alter risk of childhood ALL however, investigation in a larger population is required. If interaction of folic acid supplementation and IKZF1 variants holds, it may be useful to quantify folate levels prior to initiating use of folic acid supplements.

  12. New epidemiological pattern of cutaneous leishmaniasis in two pre-Saharan arid provinces, southern Morocco.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ait Kbaich, Mouad; Mhaidi, Idriss; Ezzahidi, Abdelkacem; Dersi, Nouredine; El Hamouchi, Adil; Riyad, Myriam; Akarid, Khadija; Lemrani, Meryem

    2017-09-01

    Three Leishmania species are responsible of cutaneous leishmaniasis (CL) in Morocco. Zoonotic CL due to Leishmania major and Leishmania infantum, the first is known as established in the eastern arid regions, whereas the latter evolves sporadically, especially in the North. While Leishmania tropica, classically considered anthroponotic, is endemic in the semi-arid regions and is largely distributed throughout the country. The aim of this study was to identify the Leishmania species causing CL in two Provinces in arid pre-Saharan region known as zoonotic CL foci, and to contribute an update to the national data concerning the distribution of Leishmania species in both regions. The recruitment of patients was done in six localities in Ouarzazate and Zagoura provinces in 2015 and 2016. Out of 81 samples collected, 66 were positive (81%) by ITS1-PCR amplification of Leishmania DNA extracted from stained smears. The highest rate of Leishmania infection was registered in children aged 9 years or less (71,2%). The ITS1-PCR- RFLP analysis revealed the predominance of L. major infecting 52 patients (79%), followed by L. tropica in 12 patients (18%) and L. infantum in 2 patients who had no history of travel outside the studied area (3%). The sequencing of the ITS1 of both L. infantum, showed 100% similarities with L. infantum strains isolated from dogs and visceral leishmaniasis patients from the south and north of Morocco. The coexistence of the 3 Leishmania species in the same focus, and the difficult distinction of infections associated to the different Leishmania species based only on clinical lesions' aspects complicate the diagnosis and then the national control strategy, as well as the therapeutic management. The epidemiological pattern of CL in the studied areas appears to have changed during the last decades, from a predominant zoonotic CL caused by L. major to a polymorphic disease that can be due to any of the 3 Leishmania species. The expansion of L. infantum and

  13. Sustainability of Water Resources in Arid Ecosystems: A View from Hei River Basin, China (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zheng, C.; Cheng, G.; Xiao, H.; Ma, R.

    2009-12-01

    The northwest of China is characterized by an arid climate and fragile ecosystems. With irrigated agriculture, the region is a prolific producer of cotton, wheat, and maize with some of the highest output per acre in the country. The region is also rich in ore deposits, with the reserves of numerous minerals ranked at or near the top in the country. However, the sustainability of irrigated agriculture and economic development in the region is threaten by severe eco-environmental problems resulting from both global changes and human activities, such as desertification, salinization, groundwater depletion, and dust storms. All these problems are a direct consequence of water scarcity. As global warming accelerates and rapid economic growth continues, the water shortage crisis is expected to worsen. To improve the bleak outlook for the health of ecosystem and environment in northwest China, the Chinese government has invested heavily in ecosystem restoration and watershed management in recent years. However, the effectiveness of such measures and actions depends on scientific understanding of the complex interplays among ecological, hydrological and socioeconomic factors. This presentation is intended to provide an overview of a major new research initiative supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China to study the integration of ecological principles, hydrological processes and socioeconomic considerations toward more sustainable exploitation of surface water and groundwater resources in the Hei River Basin in northwest China. The Hei River Basin is an inland watershed located at the center of the arid region in East Asia, stretching from Qilianshan Mountains in the south to the desert in the north bordering China’s Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region and Mongolia. The total area of Hei River Basin is approximately 130,000 km2. The research initiative builds on existing research infrastructure and ecohydrological data and seeks to reveal complex

  14. Role of Aeolian Dust in Shaping Landscapes and Soils of Arid and Semi-Arid South Africa

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joseph R. McAuliffe

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available The deposition of fine aeolian sediment profoundly influences the morphology of several different landscapes of the arid and semi-arid western portion of South Africa. Such landscapes and features include: (1 regularly-spaced mounds known as heuweltjies of the succulent Karoo region, (2 barren stone pavements in the more arid regions, and (3 hillslopes with smooth, curvilinear slope profiles that are mantled with coarse, stony colluvium. Investigations of each of these are presented, together with comparisons of similar features found within arid and semi-arid portions of Western North America. Recent findings suggest that the formation of the distinct, regularly-spaced heuweltjies involves a linked set of biological and physical processes. These include nutrient accumulation by termites and the production of dense vegetation patches, which, in turn, serve as a trap for aeolian sediments. Dust deposition is also responsible for the formation of stone pavements as demonstrated by research conducted principally in the Mojave Desert region of the United States. Mineralogical and geochronological studies have demonstrated that the stone clasts remain on the surface as fine aeolian sediments are translocated downward beneath the clasts resulting in a silt-rich soil horizon directly beneath the clasts. Pavements examined in South Africa have the same morphological features that can only be explained by the same process. The formation of soils on hillslopes mantled with stony colluvium are commonly viewed as having formed through the in-situ weathering of the stony colluvium. However, like pavements, mantles of coarse, stony colluvium are effective dust traps that provide the long-term stability required for advanced development of thick, fine-grained soils. This process contributes to the evolution of smooth, vegetated, curvilinear slope profiles. In each of these examples, the accumulation of dust has a profound influence, not only in soil formation

  15. Camelid genomes reveal evolution and adaptation to desert environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Huiguang; Guang, Xuanmin; Al-Fageeh, Mohamed B; Cao, Junwei; Pan, Shengkai; Zhou, Huanmin; Zhang, Li; Abutarboush, Mohammed H; Xing, Yanping; Xie, Zhiyuan; Alshanqeeti, Ali S; Zhang, Yanru; Yao, Qiulin; Al-Shomrani, Badr M; Zhang, Dong; Li, Jiang; Manee, Manee M; Yang, Zili; Yang, Linfeng; Liu, Yiyi; Zhang, Jilin; Altammami, Musaad A; Wang, Shenyuan; Yu, Lili; Zhang, Wenbin; Liu, Sanyang; Ba, La; Liu, Chunxia; Yang, Xukui; Meng, Fanhua; Wang, Shaowei; Li, Lu; Li, Erli; Li, Xueqiong; Wu, Kaifeng; Zhang, Shu; Wang, Junyi; Yin, Ye; Yang, Huanming; Al-Swailem, Abdulaziz M; Wang, Jun

    2014-10-21

    Bactrian camel (Camelus bactrianus), dromedary (Camelus dromedarius) and alpaca (Vicugna pacos) are economically important livestock. Although the Bactrian camel and dromedary are large, typically arid-desert-adapted mammals, alpacas are adapted to plateaus. Here we present high-quality genome sequences of these three species. Our analysis reveals the demographic history of these species since the Tortonian Stage of the Miocene and uncovers a striking correlation between large fluctuations in population size and geological time boundaries. Comparative genomic analysis reveals complex features related to desert adaptations, including fat and water metabolism, stress responses to heat, aridity, intense ultraviolet radiation and choking dust. Transcriptomic analysis of Bactrian camels further reveals unique osmoregulation, osmoprotection and compensatory mechanisms for water reservation underpinned by high blood glucose levels. We hypothesize that these physiological mechanisms represent kidney evolutionary adaptations to the desert environment. This study advances our understanding of camelid evolution and the adaptation of camels to arid-desert environments.

  16. Evaluation of evapotranspiration methods for model validation in a semi-arid watershed in northern China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Schneider

    2007-05-01

    Full Text Available This study evaluates the performance of four evapotranspiration methods (Priestley-Taylor, Penman-Monteith, Hargreaves and Makkink of differing complexity in a semi-arid environment in north China. The results are compared to observed water vapour fluxes derived from eddy flux measurements. The analysis became necessary after discharge simulations using an automatically calibrated version of the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT failed to reproduce runoff measurements. Although the study area receives most of the annual rainfall during the vegetation period, high temperatures can cause water scarcity. We investigate which evapotranspiration method is most suitable for this environment and whether the model performance of SWAT can be improved with the most adequate evapotranspiration method.

    The evapotranspiration models were tested in two consecutive years with different rainfall amounts. In general, the simple Hargreaves and Makkink equations outmatch the more complex Priestley-Taylor and Penman-Monteith methods, although their performance depended on water availability. Effects on the quality of SWAT runoff simulations, however, remained minor. Although evapotranspiration is an important process in the hydrology of this steppe environment, our analysis indicates that other driving factors still need to be identified to improve SWAT simulations.

  17. An integrative approach to characterize hydrological processes and water quality in a semi-arid watershed in Northeastern Brazil

    Science.gov (United States)

    Franklin, M. R.; Fernandes, N.; Veiga, L. H. S.; Melo, L. R.; Santos, A. C. S.; Araujo, V. P.

    2014-12-01

    Arid and semi-arid regions face serious challenges in the management of scarce water resources. This situation tends to become worse with the increasing population growth rates and consequently increasing water demand. Groundwater is the most important water resource in these areas and, therefore, the sustainability of its use depends on the effectiveness in which it is managed, both in terms of quantity and quality. The Caetité Experimental Basin (CEB), located in a semi-arid region of Northeastern Brazil, faces not only the challenges associated with water scarcity, but also changes in landscape and potential contamination processes due to mining activity. The only active uranium production center in Brazil (URA) is located in this watershed and the sustainability of mining and milling operations as well as the survival of the local community are highly dependent on the availability of groundwater resources. Hydrogeological studies in this area are scarce, and the potential contamination and overexploitation of groundwater can not be ruled out. Therefore, a national project was launched in order to improve the understanding and quantification of the interaction between the hydrogeological system and human health. The methodological approach involved hydrological and geochemical monitoring and characterization of the CEB, use of isotopic techniques, groundwater modeling, water quality diagnosis and human health risk assessment due to water ingestion. The results suggested that the groundwater in the CEB are not totally connected, with evidence of a mixture of recent and old waters. The Na-Ca-HCO3-Cl is the dominant water type (50%) followed by Ca-Na-HCO3-Cl water type (17%). The relevant non-radioactive contaminants are Mn, F, NO3 and Ba, mostly from natural origin, with the exception of NO3 that could be associated with the livestock activities. The estimated effective doses due to groundwater ingestion containing radionuclides are below the recommended

  18. Modeling mechanisms of vegetation change due to fire in a semi-arid ecosystem

    Science.gov (United States)

    White, J.D.; Gutzwiller, K.J.; Barrow, W.C.; Randall, L.J.; Swint, P.

    2008-01-01

    Vegetation growth and community composition in semi-arid environments is determined by water availability and carbon assimilation mechanisms specific to different plant types. Disturbance also impacts vegetation productivity and composition dependent on area affected, intensity, and frequency factors. In this study, a new spatially explicit ecosystem model is presented for the purpose of simulating vegetation cover type changes associated with fire disturbance in the northern Chihuahuan Desert region. The model is called the Landscape and Fire Simulator (LAFS) and represents physiological activity of six functional plant types incorporating site climate, fire, and seed dispersal routines for individual grid cells. We applied this model for Big Bend National Park, Texas, by assessing the impact of wildfire on the trajectory of vegetation communities over time. The model was initialized and calibrated based on landcover maps derived from Landsat-5 Thematic Mapper data acquired in 1986 and 1999 coupled with plant biomass measurements collected in the field during 2000. Initial vegetation cover change analysis from satellite data showed shrub encroachment during this time period that was captured in the simulated results. A synthetic 50-year climate record was derived from historical meteorological data to assess system response based on initial landcover conditions. This simulation showed that shrublands increased to the detriment of grass and yucca-ocotillo vegetation cover types indicating an ecosystem-level trajectory for shrub encroachment. Our analysis of simulated fires also showed that fires significantly reduced site biomass components including leaf area, stem, and seed biomass in this semi-arid ecosystem. In contrast to other landscape simulation models, this new model incorporates detailed physiological responses of functional plant types that will allow us to simulated the impact of increased atmospheric CO2 occurring with climate change coupled with fire

  19. Towards a physically-based multi-scale ecohydrological simulator for semi-arid regions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caviedes-Voullième, Daniel; Josefik, Zoltan; Hinz, Christoph

    2017-04-01

    The use of numerical models as tools for describing and understanding complex ecohydrological systems has enabled to test hypothesis and propose fundamental, process-based explanations of the system system behaviour as a whole as well as its internal dynamics. Reaction-diffusion equations have been used to describe and generate organized pattern such as bands, spots, and labyrinths using simple feedback mechanisms and boundary conditions. Alternatively, pattern-matching cellular automaton models have been used to generate vegetation self-organization in arid and semi-arid regions also using simple description of surface hydrological processes. A key question is: How much physical realism is needed in order to adequately capture the pattern formation processes in semi-arid regions while reliably representing the water balance dynamics at the relevant time scales? In fact, redistribution of water by surface runoff at the hillslope scale occurs at temporal resolution of minutes while the vegetation development requires much lower temporal resolution and longer times spans. This generates a fundamental spatio-temporal multi-scale problem to be solved, for which high resolution rainfall and surface topography are required. Accordingly, the objective of this contribution is to provide proof-of-concept that governing processes can be described numerically at those multiple scales. The requirements for a simulating ecohydrological processes and pattern formation with increased physical realism are, amongst others: i. high resolution rainfall that adequately captures the triggers of growth as vegetation dynamics of arid regions respond as pulsed systems. ii. complex, natural topography in order to accurately model drainage patterns, as surface water redistribution is highly sensitive to topographic features. iii. microtopography and hydraulic roughness, as small scale variations do impact on large scale hillslope behaviour iv. moisture dependent infiltration as temporal

  20. User perspectives on relevance criteria

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Maglaughlin, Kelly L.; Sonnenwald, Diane H.

    2002-01-01

    , partially relevant, or not relevant to their information need; and explained their decisions in an interview. Analysis revealed 29 criteria, discussed positively and negatively, that were used by the participants when selecting passages that contributed or detracted from a document's relevance......This study investigates the use of criteria to assess relevant, partially relevant, and not-relevant documents. Study participants identified passages within 20 document representations that they used to make relevance judgments; judged each document representation as a whole to be relevant...... matter, thought catalyst), full text (e.g., audience, novelty, type, possible content, utility), journal/publisher (e.g., novelty, main focus, perceived quality), and personal (e.g., competition, time requirements). Results further indicate that multiple criteria are used when making relevant, partially...

  1. Arid site water balance: evapotranspiration modeling and measurements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gee, G.W.; Kirkham, R.R.

    1984-09-01

    In order to evaluate the magnitude of radionuclide transport at an aird site, a field and modeling study was conducted to measure and predict water movement under vegetated and bare soil conditions. Significant quantities of water were found to move below the roo of a shallow-rooted grass-covered area during wet years at the Hanford site. The unsaturated water flow model, UNSAT-1D, was resonably successful in simulating the transient behavior of the water balance at this site. The effects of layered soils on water balance were demonstrated using the model. Models used to evaluate water balance in arid regions should not rely on annual averages and assume that all precipitation is removed by evapotranspiration. The potential for drainage at arid sites exists under conditions where shallow rooted plants grow on coarse textured soils. This condition was observed at our study site at Hanford. Neutron probe data collected on a cheatgrass community at the Hanford site during a wet year indicated that over 5 cm of water drained below the 3.5-m depth. The unsaturated water flow model, UNSAT-1D, predicted water drainage of about 5 cm (single layer, 10 months) and 3.5 cm (two layers, 12 months) for the same time period. Additional field measurements of hydraulic conductivity will likely improve the drainage estimate made by UNSAT-1D. Additional information describing cheatgrass growth and water use at the grass site could improve model predictions of sink terms and subsequent calculations of water storage within the rooting zone. In arid areas where the major part of the annual precipitation occurs during months with low average potential evapotranspiration and where soils are vegetated but are coarse textured and well drained, significant drainage can occur. 31 references, 18 figures, 1 table

  2. Hydrological response in catchments whit debris covered glaciers in the semi-arid Andes, Chile

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caro, A.; McPhee, J.; MacDonell, S.; Pellicciotti, F.; Ayala, A.

    2016-12-01

    Glaciers in the semi-arid Andes Cordillera in Chile have shrank rapidly during the 20th century. Negative mass balance contributes to increase the surface area of debris-covered glaciers. Recent research in Chile suggests that contributions from glaciers to summer season river flow in dry years is very important, however hydrological processes determining the glacier contribution are still poorly understood in the region. This work seeks to determine appropriate parameters for the simulation of melt volume in two watersheds dominated by debris-covered glaciers, in order to understand its variability in time and space, in the area with the largest population in Chile. The hydrological simulation is performed for the Tapado (30°S) and Pirámide (33ºS) glaciers, which can be defined as cold and temperate respectively. To simulate the hydrological behaviour we adopt the physically-based TOPographic Kinematic wave APproximation model (TOPKAPI-ETH). The hydrometeorological records necessary model runs have been collected through fieldwork from 2013 to 2015. Regarding the calibration of the model parameters melting ETI, its observed that the value for TF in Pirámide is a third of the value for Tapado glacier, while SRF is half in Tapado regarding to Pirámide. The runoff in the glaciers, the constant snow and ice storage are higher in Tapado regarding Pirámide. Results show a contribution of glacial outflow to runoff during 2015 of 55% in Tapado and 77% in Pirámide, with maximum contributions between January and March in Tapado and Pirámide between November and March, presenting the relevance of the permanence of snow cover during spring and shelter that provides debris-covered in reducing the melting glacier. The results have allowed to know the relevance of the glacier contribution to mountain streams, allowing to know the calibration parameters most relevant in the hydrology balance of glacier basins in the Andes.

  3. Soil bacterial and fungal community responses to nitrogen addition across soil depth and microhabitat in an arid shrubland

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, Rebecca C.; Belnap, Jayne; Kuske, Cheryl R.

    2015-01-01

    Arid shrublands are stressful environments, typified by alkaline soils low in organic matter, with biologically-limiting extremes in water availability, temperature, and UV radiation. The widely-spaced plants and interspace biological soil crusts in these regions provide soil nutrients in a localized fashion, creating a mosaic pattern of plant- or crust-associated microhabitats with distinct nutrient composition. With sporadic and limited rainfall, nutrients are primarily retained in the shallow surface soil, patterning biological activity. We examined soil bacterial and fungal community responses to simulated nitrogen (N) deposition in an arid Larrea tridentata-Ambrosia dumosa field experiment in southern Nevada, USA, using high-throughput sequencing of ribosomal RNA genes. To examine potential interactions among the N application, microhabitat and soil depth, we sampled soils associated with shrub canopies and interspace biological crusts at two soil depths (0–0.5 or 0–10 cm) across the N-amendment gradient (0, 7, and 15 kg ha−1 yr−1). We hypothesized that localized compositional differences in soil microbiota would constrain the impacts of N addition to a microhabitat distribution that would reflect highly localized geochemical conditions and microbial community composition. The richness and community composition of both bacterial and fungal communities differed significantly by microhabitat and with soil depth in each microhabitat. Only bacterial communities exhibited significant responses to the N addition. Community composition correlated with microhabitat and depth differences in soil geochemical features. Given the distinct roles of soil bacteria and fungi in major nutrient cycles, the resilience of fungi and sensitivity of bacteria to N amendments suggests that increased N input predicted for many arid ecosystems could shift nutrient cycling toward pathways driven primarily by fungal communities.

  4. Soil bacterial and fungal community responses to nitrogen addition across soil depths and microhabitat in an arid shrubland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rebecca C Mueller

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Arid shrublands are stressful environments, typified by alkaline soils low in organic matter, with biologically-limiting extremes in water availability, temperature and UV radiation. The widely-spaced plants and interspace biological soil crusts in these regions provide soil nutrients in a localized fashion, creating a mosaic pattern of plant- or crust-associated microhabitats with distinct nutrient composition. With sporadic and limited rainfall, nutrients are primarily retained in the shallow surface soil, patterning biological activity. We examined soil bacterial and fungal community responses to simulated nitrogen (N deposition in an arid Larrea tridentata-Ambrosia dumosa field experiment in southern Nevada, USA, using high-throughput sequencing of ribosomal RNA genes. To examine potential interactions among the N application, microhabitat and soil depth, we sampled soils associated with shrub canopies and interspace biological crusts at two soil depths (0-0.5 cm or 0-10 cm across the N-amendment gradient (0, 7 and 15 kg ha-1 yr-1. We hypothesized that localized compositional differences in soil microbiota would constrain the impacts of N addition to a microhabitat distribution that would reflect highly localized geochemical conditions and microbial community composition. The richness and community composition of both bacterial and fungal communities differed significantly by microhabitat and with soil depth in each microhabitat. Only bacterial communities exhibited significant responses to the N addition. Community composition correlated with microhabitat and depth differences in soil geochemical features. Given the distinct roles of soil bacteria and fungi in major nutrient cycles, the resilience of fungi and sensitivity of bacteria to N amendments suggests that increased N input predicted for many arid ecosystems could shift nutrient cycling toward pathways driven primarily by fungal communities.

  5. Pathways to Resilience in Semi-Arid Economies | CRDI - Centre de ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    Pathways to Resilience in Semi-Arid Economies. How can populations become resilient to climate change while pursuing economic growth? This question is at the heart of a research project designed to support climate-resilient economic development in semi-arid lands. It will do so by addressing the conditions for ...

  6. Survival and long-term growth of eucalypts on semi-arid sites in a ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    1, which is comparable to volume obtained at more favourable aridity indices in the summer rainfall zone of South Africa and exceeds the growth rates obtained in several other arid zone studies globally. The E. grandis × E. camaldulensis ...

  7. Impact of grazing on range plant community components under arid Mediterranean climate in northern Syria

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Niane, A.A.

    2013-01-01

    Keywords: Rotational grazing, full protection, continuous grazing species richness,

    species diversity, soil seed bank, Bayesian methods, Salsola vermiculata, seed

    longevity, rangeland management, Syria.

    Rangelands represent 70% of the semi-arid and arid

  8. The ARID1B phenotype: what we have learned so far.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santen, Gijs W E; Clayton-Smith, Jill

    2014-09-01

    Evidence is now accumulating from a number of sequencing studies that ARID1B not only appears to be one of the most frequently mutated intellectual disability (ID) genes, but that the range of phenotypes caused by ARID1B mutations seems to be extremely wide. Thus, it is one of the most interesting ID genes identified so far in the exome sequencing era. In this article, we review the literature surrounding ARID1B and attempt to delineate the ARID1B phenotype. The vast majority of published ARID1B patients have been ascertained through studies of Coffin-Siris syndrome (CSS), which leads to bias when documenting the frequencies of phenotypic features. Additional observations of those individuals ascertained through exome sequencing studies helps in delineation of the broader clinical phenotype. We are currently establishing an ARID1B consortium, aimed at collecting ARID1B patients identified through genome-wide sequencing strategies. We hope that this endeavor will eventually lead to a more comprehensive view of the ARID1B phenotype. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  9. Special waste form lysimeters-arid. Annual report, 1985

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Walter, M.B.; Graham, M.J.

    1985-09-01

    The Special Waste Form Lysimeters-Arid program was initiated to determine typical source terms generated by commercial solidified low-level nuclear waste in an arid climate. Waste-form leaching tests are being conducted at a field facility at the Hanford site near Richland, Washington. A similar program is being conducted at a humid site. The field facility consists of 10 lysimeters placed around a central instrument caisson. The waste samples from boiling water and pressurized water reactors were emplaced in 1984, and the lysimeters are being monitored for movement of contaminants and water. Solidifying agents being tested include vinyl ester-styrene, bitumen, and cement. Laboratory leaching and geochemical modeling studies are being conducted to predict expected leach rates at the field site and to aid field-data interpretation. Small samples of the solidified waste forms were made for use in the laboratory leaching studies that include standard leach tests and leaching of solidified waste forms in soil columns. Complete chemical and radionuclide analyses are being conducted on the solid and liquid portions of the wastes. 2 refs

  10. Uranium isotopes in carbonate aquifers of arid region setting

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Alshamsi, D.M.; Murad, A.A.

    2013-01-01

    Groundwater in arid and semiarid regions is vital resource for many uses and therefore information about concentrations of uranium isotopes among other chemical parameters are necessary. In the study presented here, distribution of 238 U and 235 U in groundwater of four selected locations in the southern Arabian peninsula, namely at two locations within the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and two locations in Oman are discussed. The analyses of the uranium isotopes were performed using ICP-MS and the results indicated a range of concentrations for 235 U and 238 U at 3-39 ng L -1 (average: 18 ng L -1 ) and 429-5,293 ng L -1 (average: 2,508 ng L -1 ) respectively. These uranium concentrations are below the higher permissible WHO limit for drinking water and also comparable to averages found in groundwater from similar aquifers in Florida and Tunisia. Negative correlation between rainfall and uranium concentrations suggests that in lithologically comparable aquifers, climate may influence the concentration of uranium in subtropical to arid regions. (author)

  11. Soil microbial responses to nitrogen addition in arid ecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert L Sinsabaugh

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available The N cycle of arid ecosystems is influenced by low soil organic matter, high soil pH and extremes in water potential and temperature that lead to open canopies and development of biological soil crusts (biocrusts. We investigated the effects of N amendment on soil microbial dynamics in a Larrea tridentata-Ambrosia dumosa shrubland site in southern Nevada USA. Sites were fertilized with a NO3-NH4 mix at 0, 7, and 15 kg ha-1 yr-1 from March 2012 to March 2013. In March 2013, biocrust (0-0.5 cm and bulk soils (0-10 cm were collected beneath Ambrosia canopies and in the interspaces between plants. Biomass responses were assessed as bacterial and fungal SSU rRNA gene copy number and chlorophyll a concentration. Metabolic responses were measured by five ecoenzyme activities (EEA and rates of N transformation. By most measures, nutrient availability, microbial biomass and process rates were greater in soils beneath the shrub canopy compared to the interspace between plants, and greater in the surface biocrust horizon compared to the deeper 10 cm soil profile. Most measures responded positively to experimental N addition. Effect sizes were generally greater for bulk soil than biocrust. Results were incorporated into a meta-analysis of arid ecosystem responses to N.

  12. Diversity of avian haemosporidians in arid zones of northern Venezuela.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belo, Nayara O; Rodríguez-Ferraro, Adriana; Braga, Erika M; Ricklefs, Robert E

    2012-07-01

    Arid zones of northern Venezuela are represented by isolated areas, important from an ornithological and ecological perspective due to the occurrence of restricted-range species of birds. We analysed the prevalence and molecular diversity of haemosporidian parasites of wild birds in this region by screening 527 individuals (11 families and 20 species) for parasite mitochondrial DNA. The overall prevalence of parasites was 41%, representing 17 mitochondrial lineages: 7 of Plasmodium and 10 of Haemoproteus. Two parasite lineages occurred in both the eastern and western regions infecting a single host species, Mimus gilvus. These lineages are also present throughout northern and central Venezuela in a variety of arid and mesic habitats. Some lineages found in this study in northern Venezuela have also been observed in different localities in the Americas, including the West Indies. In spite of the widespread distributions of some of the parasite lineages found in northern Venezuela, several, including some that are relatively common (e.g. Ven05 and Ven06), have not been reported from elsewhere. Additional studies are needed to characterize the host and geographical distribution of avian malaria parasite lineages, which will provide a better understanding of the influence of landscape, vector abundance and diversity, and host identity on haemosporidian parasite diversity and prevalence.

  13. Aridity, desalination plants and tourism in the eastern Canary Islands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    José-León García-Rodríguez

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available The islands of Lanzarote and Fuerteventura are the easternmost of the Canary Islands, and are located on the southern edge of the temperate zone, in the subtropical anticyclone belt. With less than 150 mm of rainfall a year, they are classified as an arid zone. Their inhabitants have devised original agricultural systems to combat the aridity, although low yields have historically limited socio-economic development and population growth. These systems were used until the introduction of seawater desalination plants and the arrival of tourism in the last third of the twentieth century, which improved living standards for the local population but also led to a cultural transition. Nevertheless, these farming systems have left behind an important regional heritage, with an environmental and scenic value that has played an integral role in the latest phase of development. The systems have become a tourist attraction and have been central to the two islands being designated biosphere reserves by UNESCO. This article aims to analyse the main socioeconomic and land-use changes that have come about as a result of desalination technology.

  14. Isotope hydrology applied to evaluation of groundwater in arid areas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Froehlich, K.; Geyh, M.A.; Verhagen, B.T.; Wirth, K.

    1987-01-01

    Capture of underground water in arid or semi-arid areas in developing countries is essential to safeguarding life. In order to realize in time, or to prevent, endangerment of exploitable groundwater resources due to pollution or excess exploitation, isotope hydrology offers low-cost methods that are applied along with other methods. Their results contribute to determine the origin, mixing, residence time (or age), and pollution of endangered groundwater resources. The research report in hand uses the results of hydrochemical analyses and isotope hydrological data from hydrogeological studies made over some years by the Bundesanstalt fuer Geowissenschaften und Rohstoffe in six selected countries: Jordan, Cyprus, Brazil, Sudan, Djibouti, Senegal. It also uses data of recent analyses of the years 1985 and 1986. Data evaluation is done applying modern, qualitative and quantitative methods of interpretation. The available long-term series of isotopic data are scanned for any early information on water quality deterioration that is not otherwise detected. The information thus obtained is a prerequisite of urgently needed measures for protecting the groundwater reserves. (orig./HP) [de

  15. Special Waste Form Lysimeters-Arid: annual report 1985

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Walter, M.B.; Graham, M.J.

    1986-01-01

    The Special Waste Form Lysimeters-Arid program was initiated to determine typical source terms generated by commercial solidified low-level nuclear waste in an arid climate. Waste-form leaching tests are being conducted at a field facility at the Hanford site near Richland, Washington. A similar program is being conducted at a humid site. The field facility consists of 10 lysimeters placed around a central instrument caisson. The waste samples from boiling water and pressurized water reactors were emplaced in 1984, and the lysimeters are being monitored for movement of contaminants and water. Solidifying agents being tested include vinyl ester-styrene, bitumen, and cement. Laboratory leaching and geochemical modeling studies are being conducted to predict expected leach rates at the field site and to aid field-data interpretation. Small samples of the solidified waste forms were made for use in the laboratory leaching studies that include standard leach tests and leaching of solidified waste forms in soil columns. Complete chemical and radionuclide analyses are being conducted on the solid and liquid portions of the wastes

  16. Dividend Is Relevant: A Restatement | Amadasu | African Research ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The major recommendation is that dividend, priceearningsratio, retained earnings, return on capital employed andautonomous part assumed to be government, external, internal, andeconomic environment, should be coordinated through policy instruments forcorporate governance for dividend to have relevance.

  17. Study on Applicability of Conceptual Hydrological Models for Flood Forecasting in Humid, Semi-Humid Semi-Arid and Arid Basins in China

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guangyuan Kan

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Flood simulation and forecasting in various types of watersheds is a hot issue in hydrology. Conceptual hydrological models have been widely applied to flood forecasting for decades. With the development of economy, modern China faces with severe flood disasters in all types of watersheds include humid, semi-humid semi-arid and arid watersheds. However, conceptual model-based flood forecasting in semi-humid semi-arid and arid regions is still challenging. To investigate the applicability of conceptual hydrological models for flood forecasting in the above mentioned regions, three typical conceptual models, include Xinanjiang (XAJ, mix runoff generation (MIX and northern Shannxi (NS, are applied to 3 humid, 3 semi-humid semi-arid, and 3 arid watersheds. The rainfall-runoff data of the 9 watersheds are analyzed based on statistical analysis and information theory, and the model performances are compared and analyzed based on boxplots and scatter plots. It is observed the complexity of drier watershed data is higher than that of the wetter watersheds. This indicates the flood forecasting is harder in drier watersheds. Simulation results indicate all models perform satisfactorily in humid watersheds and only NS model is applicable in arid watersheds. Model with consideration of saturation excess runoff generation (XAJ and MIX perform better than the infiltration excess-based NS model in semi-humid semi-arid watersheds. It is concluded more accurate mix runoff generation theory, more stable and efficient numerical solution of infiltration equation and rainfall data with higher spatial-temporal resolution are main obstacles for conceptual model-based flood simulation and forecasting.

  18. Expanding the phenotypic spectrum of ARID1B-mediated disorders and identification of altered cell-cycle dynamics due to ARID1B haploinsufficiency

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sim, J. C. H.; White, S. M.; Fitzpatrick, E.

    2014-01-01

    Background: Mutations in genes encoding components of the Brahma-associated factor (BAF) chromatin remodeling complex have recently been shown to contribute to multiple syndromes characterised by developmental delay and intellectual disability. ARID1B mutations have been identified as the predomi......Background: Mutations in genes encoding components of the Brahma-associated factor (BAF) chromatin remodeling complex have recently been shown to contribute to multiple syndromes characterised by developmental delay and intellectual disability. ARID1B mutations have been identified...

  19. Classification of Clinically Relevant Microorganisms in Non-Medical Environments

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Bowers, Daniel

    2004-01-01

    .... He named them Staphylococcus aureus because of their golden color. S. aureus remains one of the most important pathogens in clinical settings largely due to the rapidity of its evolutionary response to treatment...

  20. Impact of treated wastewater reuse and floods on water quality and fish health within a water reservoir in an arid climate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zaibel, Inbal; Zilberg, Dina; Groisman, Ludmila; Arnon, Shai

    2016-07-15

    Treated wastewater (TWW) reuse for agricultural irrigation is a well-established approach to coping with water shortages in semi-arid and arid environments. Recently, additional uses of TWW have emerged, including streamflow augmentation and aquatic ecosystem restoration. The purpose of the current study was to evaluate the water quality and fish health, in an artificial reservoir located in an arid climate (the Yeruham Reservoir, Israel), which regularly receives TWW and sporadic winter floods. The temporal distribution of water levels, nutrients and organic micropollutants (OMPs) were measured during the years 2013-2014. OMPs were also measured in sediment and fish tissues. Finally, the status of fish health was evaluated by histopathology. Water levels and quality were mainly influenced by seasonal processes such as floods and evaporation, and not by the discharge of TWW. Out of 16 tested OMPs, estrone, carbamazepine, diclofenac and bezafibrate were found in the reservoir water, but mostly at concentrations below the predicted no-effect concentration (PNEC) for fish. Concentrations of PCBs and dioxins in fish muscle and liver were much lower than the EU maximal permitted concentrations, and similar to concentrations that were found in food fish in Israel and Europe. In the histopathological analysis, there were no evident tissue abnormalities, and low to moderate infection levels of fish parasites were recorded. The results from the Yeruham Reservoir demonstrated a unique model for the mixture effect between TWW reuse and natural floods to support a unique stable and thriving ecosystem in a water reservoir located in an arid region. This type of reservoir can be widely used for recreation, education, and the social and economic development of a rural environment, such as has occurred in the Yeruham region. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. In vitro antagonistic activity, plant growth promoting traits and phylogenetic affiliation of rhizobacteria associated with wild plants grown in arid soil.

    Science.gov (United States)

    El-Sayed, Wael S; Akhkha, Abdellah; El-Naggar, Moustafa Y; Elbadry, Medhat

    2014-01-01

    The role of plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR) in adaptation of plants in extreme environments is not yet completely understood. For this study native bacteria were isolated from rhizospeheric arid soils and evaluated for both growth-promoting abilities and antagonistic potential against phytopathogenic fungi and nematodes. The phylogentic affiliation of these representative isolates was also characterized. Rhizobacteria associated with 11 wild plant species from the arid soil of Almadinah Almunawarah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) were investigated. From a total of 531 isolates, only 66 bacterial isolates were selected based on their ability to inhibit Fusarium oxysporum, and Sclerotinia sclerotiorum. The selected isolates were screened in vitro for activities related to plant nutrition and plant growth regulation as well as for antifungal and nematicidal traits. Isolated bacteria were found to exhibit capabilities in fix atmospheric nitrogen, produce ammonia, indoleacetic acid (IAA), siderophores, solubilize phosphate and zinc, and showed an antagonistic potential against some phytopathogenic fungi and one nematode species (Meloidogyne incognita) to various extent. Isolates were ranked by their potential ability to function as PGPR. The 66 isolates were genotyped using amplified rDNA restriction analysis (ARDRA) and 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis. The taxonomic composition of the representative genotypes from both rhizosphere and rhizoplane comprised Bacillus, Enterobacter and Pseudomonas. Out of the 10 genotypes, three strains designated as PHP03, CCP05, and TAP02 might be regarded as novel strains based on their low similarity percentages and high bootstrap values. The present study clearly identified specific traits in the isolated rhizobacteria, which make them good candidates as PGPR and might contribute to plant adaption to arid environments. Application of such results in agricultural fields may improve and enhance plant growth in arid soils.

  2. In vitro Antagonistic Activity, Plant Growth Promoting Traits and Phylogenetic Affiliation of Rhizobacteria Associated with Wild Plants Grown in Arid Soil

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wael Samir El-Sayed

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available The role of plant growth-promoting rhizobacteria (PGPR in adaptation of plants in extreme environments is not yet completely understood. For this study native bacteria were isolated from rhizospeheric arid soils and evaluated for both growth-promoting abilities and antagonistic potential against phytopathogenic fungi and nematodes. The phylogentic affiliation of these representative isolates was also characterized. Rhizobacteria associated with eleven wild plant species from the arid soil of Almadinah Almunawarah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA were investigated. From a total of 531 isolates, only 66 bacterial isolates were selected based on their ability to inhibit Fusarium oxysporum, and Sclerotinia sclerotiorum. The selected isolates were screened in vitro for activities related to plant nutrition and plant growth regulation as well as for antifungal and nematicidal traits. Isolated bacteria were found to exhibit capabilities in fix atmospheric nitrogen, produce ammonia, indoleacetic acid (IAA, siderophores, solubilize phosphate and zinc, and showed an antagonistic potential against some phytopathogenic fungi and one nematode species (Meloidogyne incognita to various extent. Isolates were ranked by their potential ability to function as PGPR. The 66 isolates were genotyped using amplified rDNA restriction analysis (ARDRA and 16S rRNA gene sequence analysis. The taxonomic composition of the representative genotypes from both rhizosphere and rhizoplane comprised Bacillus, Enterobacter and Pseudomonas. Out of the ten genotypes, three strains designated as PHP03, CCP05, and TAP02 might be regarded as novel strains based on their low similarity percentages and high bootstrap values. The present study clearly identified specific traits in the isolated rhizobacteria, which make them good candidates as PGPR and might contribute to plant adaption to arid environments. Application of such results in agricultural fields may improve and enhance plant

  3. Consistency between Sweat Rate and Wet Bulb Globe Temperature for the Assessment of Heat Stress of People Working Outdoor in Arid and Semi-arid Regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hamidreza Heidari

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Background: Heat stress is common among workers in arid and semi-arid areas. In order to take every preventive measure to protect exposed workers against heat-related disorders, it is crucial to choose an appropriate index that accurately relates environmental parameters to physiological responses. Objective: To investigate the consistency between 2 heat stress and strain indices, ie, sweat rate and wet bulb globe temperature (WBGT, for the assessment of heat stress of people working outdoor in arid and semi-arid regions in Iran. Methods: During spring and summer, 136 randomly selected outdoor workers were enrolled in this study. Using a defined protocol, the sweat rate of these workers was measured 3 times a day. Simultaneously, the environmental parameters including WBGT index were recorded for each working station. Results: The level of agreement between sweat rate and WBGT was poor (κ<0.2. Based on sweat rate, no case exceeding the reference value was observed during the study. WBGT overestimated the heat stress in outdoor workers compared to sweat rate. Conclusion: It seems that the sweat rate standards may need some modifications related to real condition of work in arid and semi-arid regions in Iran. Moreover, it seems that judging workers solely based on monitoring their sweat rate in such regions, can probably result in underestimation of heat stress.

  4. Identification of suitable sites for rainwater harvesting structures in arid and semi-arid regions: A review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ammar Adham

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Harvested rainwater is an alternative source of water in arid and semi-arid regions (ASARs around the world. Many researchers have developed and applied various methodologies and criteria to identify suitable sites and techniques for rainwater harvesting (RWH. Determining the best method or guidelines for site selection, however, is difficult. The main objective of this study was to define a general method for selecting suitable RWH sites in ASARs by assembling an inventory of the main methods and criteria developed during the last three decades. We categorised and compared four main methodologies of site selection from 48 studies published in scientific journals, reports of international organisations, or sources of information obtained from practitioners. We then identified three main sets of criteria for selecting RWH locations and the main characteristics of the most common RWH techniques used in ASARs. The methods were diverse, ranging from those based only on biophysical criteria to more integrated approaches including socio-economic criteria, especially after 2000. The most important criteria for the selection of suitable sites for RWH were slope, land use/cover, soil type, rainfall, distance to settlements/streams, and cost. The success rate of RWH projects tended to increase when these criteria were considered, but an objective evaluation of these selection methods is still lacking. Most studies now select RHW sites using geographic information systems in combination with hydrological models and multi-criteria analysis.

  5. Do invasive riparian Tamarix alter hydrology of riparian areas of arid and semi-arid regions under climate change scenarios?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhattarai, M. P.; Acharya, K.; Chen, L.

    2012-12-01

    Competitiveness of riparian invasive species, Tamarix, in arid and semi-arid riparian areas of the southwestern United States under climate change scenario (SRES A2) was investigated. Tamarix has been replacing native vegetation along the riparian corridors of these areas for the past several decades and is thought to alter water balance. Changes in depth to groundwater, soil moisture distribution and flood frequency are critical in survival and growth of a facultative phreatophyte such as Tamarix. In this study, a fully coupled 2d surface flow and 3d subsurface flow hydrologic model, HydroGeoSphere, was used to simulate surface-subsurface hydrology of the lower Virgin River basin (4500 sq. km), located in Nevada, Utah and Arizona. The hydrologic model results, depth to groundwater and soil saturation, were then applied to the species distribution model, Maxent, along with other bioclimatic parameters to asses future Tamarix distribution probability. Simulations were made for the climate scenarios of the end of 21st centry conditions. Depth to groundwater is found to be the most important predictor variable to the Maxent model. Future Tamarix distribution range is not uniform across the basin. It is likely to decrease at lower elevations and increase in some higher elevation areas.

  6. Lake Area Changes and Their Influence on Factors in Arid and Semi-Arid Regions along the Silk Road

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chao Tan

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available In the context of global warming, the changes in major lakes and their responses to the influence factors in arid and semi-arid regions along the Silk Road are especially important for the sustainable development of local water resources. In this study, the areas of 24 lakes were extracted using MODIS NDVI data, and their spatial-temporal characteristics were analyzed. In addition, the relationship between lake areas and the influence factors, including air temperature, precipitation, evapotranspiration, land use and land cover change (LULCC and population density in the watersheds, were investigated. The results indicated that the areas of most lakes shrank, and the total area decreased by 22,189.7 km2 from 2001 to 2016, except for those of the lakes located on the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau. The air temperature was the most important factor for all the lakes and increased at a rate of 0.113 °C/a during the past 16 years. LULCC and the increasing population density markedly influenced the lakes located in the middle to western parts of this study area. Therefore, our results connecting lake area changes in the study region highlight the great challenge of water resources and the urgency of implementation of the green policy in the One Belt and One Road Initiative through international collaboration.

  7. Leaf anatomy of six species of Heliotropiaceae Schrad. from the Brazilian semi-arid region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elisabeth Emília Augusta Dantas Tölke

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available The family Heliotropiaceae has more than 450 species, mainly distributed in the tropics and subtropics. In Brazil, it is represented by the genera Euploca Nutt., Heliotropium L., Myriopus Small and Tournefortia L. The aim of this study was to describe the leaf anatomy of six species of Heliotropiaceae recorded in the semi-arid region of Brazil: E. polyphylla (Lehm. J.I.M. Melo & Semir, E. procumbens (Mill. Diane & Hilger, H. angiospermum Murray, H. curassavicum L., M. rubicundus (Salzm. ex DC. Luebert and M. salzmannii (DC. Diane & Hilger. Besides contributing to the knowledge of the anatomy of the representatives of the family in the Caatinga (Brazilian savannah, we also sought to determine and highlight the anatomical features adaptive to the region and to identify features with potential diagnostic value. Leaf structures were analyzed by light microscopy and scanning electron microscopy. Additional tests were also carried out to detect starch and total lipids. The morphological variation and the distribution of trichomes were the most relevant features for species diagnosis. The distribution of stomata in M. salzmannii and H. angiospermum differed from that described in other papers, which demonstrates the anatomical plasticity of these species. This is the first report describing the leaf blade of M. rubicundus.

  8. Leaf anatomy of six species of Heliotropiaceae Schrad. from the Brazilian semi-arid region

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elisabeth Tölke

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available http://dx.doi.org/10.5007/2175-7925.2015v28n3p1 The family Heliotropiaceae has more than 450 species, mainly distributed in the tropics and subtropics. In Brazil, it is represented by the genera Euploca Nutt., Heliotropium L., Myriopus Small and Tournefortia L. The aim of this study was to describe the leaf anatomy of six species of Heliotropiaceae recorded in the semi-arid region of Brazil: E. polyphylla (Lehm. J.I.M. Melo & Semir, E. procumbens (Mill. Diane & Hilger, H. angiospermum Murray, H. curassavicum L., M. rubicundus (Salzm. ex DC. Luebert and M. salzmannii (DC. Diane & Hilger. Besides contributing to the knowledge of the anatomy of the representatives of the family in the Caatinga (Brazilian savannah, we also sought to determine and highlight the anatomical features adaptive to the region and to identify features with potential diagnostic value. Leaf structures were analyzed by light microscopy and scanning electron microscopy. Additional tests were also carried out to detect starch and total lipids. The morphological variation and the distribution of trichomes were the most relevant features for species diagnosis. The distribution of stomata in M. salzmannii and H. angiospermum differed from that described in other papers, which demonstrates the anatomical plasticity of these species. This is the first report describing the leaf blade of M. rubicundus.

  9. Mechanical environmental transport of actinides and ¹³⁷Cs from an arid radioactive waste disposal site.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Snow, Mathew S; Clark, Sue B; Morrison, Samuel S; Watrous, Matthew G; Olson, John E; Snyder, Darin C

    2015-10-01

    Aeolian and pluvial processes represent important mechanisms for the movement of actinides and fission products at the Earth's surface. Soil samples taken in the early 1970's near a Department of Energy radioactive waste disposal site (the Subsurface Disposal Area, SDA, located in southeastern Idaho) provide a case study for studying the mechanisms and characteristics of environmental actinide and (137)Cs transport in an arid environment. Multi-component mixing models suggest actinide contamination within 2.5 km of the SDA can be described by mixing between 2 distinct SDA end members and regional nuclear weapons fallout. The absence of chemical fractionation between (241)Am and (239+240)Pu with depth for samples beyond the northeastern corner and lack of (241)Am in-growth over time (due to (241)Pu decay) suggest mechanical transport and mixing of discrete contaminated particles under arid conditions. Occasional samples northeast of the SDA (the direction of the prevailing winds) contain anomalously high concentrations of Pu with (240)Pu/(239)Pu isotopic ratios statistically identical to those in the northeastern corner. Taken together, these data suggest flooding resulted in mechanical transport of contaminated particles into the area between the SDA and a flood containment dike in the northeastern corner, following which subsequent contamination spreading in the northeastern direction resulted from wind transport of discrete particles. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Algae from the arid southwestern United States: an annotated bibliography

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Thomas, W.H.; Gaines, S.R.

    1983-06-01

    Desert algae are attractive biomass producers for capturing solar energy through photosynthesis of organic matter. They are probably capable of higher yields and efficiencies of light utilization than higher plants, and are already adapted to extremes of sunlight intensity, salinity and temperature such as are found in the desert. This report consists of an annotated bibliography of the literature on algae from the arid southwestern United States. It was prepared in anticipation of efforts to isolate desert algae and study their yields in the laboratory. These steps are necessary prior to setting up outdoor algal culture ponds. Desert areas are attractive for such applications because land, sunlight, and, to some extent, water resources are abundant there. References are sorted by state.

  11. Pipeline monitoring with interferometry in non-arid regions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    McCardle, Adrian; Rabus, Bernhard; Ghuman, Parwant [MacDonald Dettwiler, Richmond, BC (Canada); Freymueller, Jeff T. [University of Alaska, Fairbanks (United States)

    2005-07-01

    Interferometry has become a proven technique for accurately measuring ground movements caused by subsidence, landslides, earthquakes and volcanoes. Using space borne sensors such as the ERS, ENVISAT and RADARSAT satellites, ground deformation can be monitored on a millimeter level. Traditionally interferometry has been limited to arid areas however new technology has allowed for successful monitoring in vegetated regions and areas of changing land-cover. Analysis of ground movement of the Trans-Alaskan pipeline demonstrates how these techniques can offer pipeline engineers a new tool for observing potential dangers to pipeline integrity. Results from Interferometric Point Target Analysis were compared with GPS measurements and speckle tracking interferometry was demonstrated to measure a major earthquake. (author)

  12. In situ bioventing in deep soils at arid sites

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Frishmuth, R.A.; Ratz, J.W.; Blicker, B.R.; Hall, J.F.; Downey, D.C.

    1995-01-01

    In situ bioventing has been shown to be a cost-effective remedial alternative for vadose zone soils. The success of the technology relies on the ability of indigenous soil microorganisms to utilize petroleum hydrocarbon contaminants as a primary metabolic substrate. Soil microbial populations are typically elevated in shallow soils due to an abundance of naturally occurring substrates and nutrients, but may be limited at greater depths due to a lack of these constituents. Therefore, the effectiveness of in situ bioventing is questionable in contaminated soil zones that extend far below the ground surface. Also, because the soil microbial population relies on soil moisture to sustain hydrocarbon degradation, the viability of bioventing is questionable in arid climates, where the soil moisture content is suspected to be minimal

  13. Expanding the phenotypic spectrum of ARID1B-mediated disorders and identification of altered cell-cycle dynamics due to ARID1B haploinsufficiency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sim, Joe C H; White, Susan M; Fitzpatrick, Elizabeth; Wilson, Gabrielle R; Gillies, Greta; Pope, Kate; Mountford, Hayley S; Torring, Pernille M; McKee, Shane; Vulto-van Silfhout, Anneke T; Jhangiani, Shalini N; Muzny, Donna M; Leventer, Richard J; Delatycki, Martin B; Amor, David J; Lockhart, Paul J

    2014-03-27

    Mutations in genes encoding components of the Brahma-associated factor (BAF) chromatin remodeling complex have recently been shown to contribute to multiple syndromes characterised by developmental delay and intellectual disability. ARID1B mutations have been identified as the predominant cause of Coffin-Siris syndrome and have also been shown to be a frequent cause of nonsyndromic intellectual disability. Here, we investigate the molecular basis of a patient with an overlapping but distinctive phenotype of intellectual disability, plantar fat pads and facial dysmorphism. High density microarray analysis of the patient demonstrated a heterozygous deletion at 6q25.3, which resulted in the loss of four genes including AT Rich Interactive Domain 1B (ARID1B). Subsequent quantitative real-time PCR analysis revealed ARID1B haploinsufficiency in the patient. Analysis of both patient-derived and ARID1B knockdown fibroblasts after serum starvation demonstrated delayed cell cycle re-entry associated with reduced cell number in the S1 phase. Based on the patient's distinctive phenotype, we ascertained four additional patients and identified heterozygous de novo ARID1B frameshift or nonsense mutations in all of them. This study broadens the spectrum of ARID1B associated phenotypes by describing a distinctive phenotype including plantar fat pads but lacking the hypertrichosis or fifth nail hypoplasia associated with Coffin-Siris syndrome. We present the first direct evidence in patient-derived cells that alterations in cell cycle contribute to the underlying pathogenesis of syndromes associated with ARID1B haploinsufficiency.

  14. Assessment of Plant Functional Types in Tropical Arid and Semi-Arid Ecosystems of India Using Remote Sensing Data and GIS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sudhakar Reddy, C.; Krishna, P. Hari; Murthy, M. S. R.

    2011-09-01

    vegetation systems were studied along arid, semi-arid and sub-humid regions of Indian Desert and Aravallis of Rajasthan, India, with a distance of 600 km. The annual precipitation decreases from as high as 1600 mm in the south to 700 mm in the north-east and 100 mm in the west. The study is based on the integrated approach of remote sensing, GIS, and phytosociology. In the step 1, vegetation type map was prepared using multi-season IRS P6 LISS III data. Screening of plant traits was done based on field observations and literature. Phytosociological data pertains to 500 sample plots was used to identify plant functional traits of 900 species at morphological level. The vegetation classification scheme at regional level identified thorn forest, dry deciduous forest, broad leaved forest, woodland, shrubland and grasslands. Five plant traits selected in the study were significant for tropical environments. Attributes such as leaf size, leaf texture, spinescence, stem diameter and bark consistency were categorized systematically. Ordination analysis was carried out across the environmental gradient. Plant functional traits were measured on 20 individuals per species at each site. Environmental information was integrated to identify plant trait response. The spatial trends in PFTs were analysed and compared across the vegetation types, along the gradient of land surface temperature, climate, elevation and time integrated NDVI. Results established the occurrence of recurrent patterns of association among selected plant traits. Functional response groups were identified by summarizing results and relating them to individual species. Finally phytoclimatic map was prepared to represent spatial distribution of PFTs. The species with of functional traits of representing microphylls, sclerophyll, rough bark, spinescence and therophyte are demarcated as drought tolerant traits. Drought Intolerant PFTs are represented by macrophyll, malacophyll, smooth Bark, non spinescent stems and leaves

  15. Diversity and activity of denitrifiers of Chilean arid soil ecosystems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julieta eOrlando

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available The Chilean sclerophyllous matorral is a Mediterranean semiarid ecosystem affected by erosion, with low soil fertility and limited by nitrogen. However, limitation of resources is even more severe for desert soils such as from the Atacama Desert, one of the most extreme arid deserts on Earth. Topsoil organic matter, nitrogen and moisture content were significantly higher in the semiarid soil compared to the desert soil. Although the most significant loss of biologically preferred nitrogen from terrestrial ecosystems occurs via denitrification, virtually nothing is known on the activity and composition of denitrifier communities thriving in arid soils. In this study, we explored denitrifier communities from two soils with profoundly distinct edaphic factors. While denitrification activity in the desert soil was below detection limit, the semiarid soil sustained denitrification activity. To elucidate the genetic potential of the soils to sustain denitrification processes we performed community analysis of denitrifiers based on nitrite reductase (nirK and nirS genes as functional marker genes for this physiological group. Presence of nirK-type denitrifiers in both soils was demonstrated but failure to amplify nirS from the desert soil suggests very low abundance of nirS-type denitrifiers shedding light on the lack of denitrification activity. Phylogenetic analysis showed a very low diversity of nirK with only three distinct genotypes in the desert soil which conditions presumably exert a high selection pressure. While nirK diversity was also limited to only few, albeit distinct genotypes, the semiarid matorral soil showed a surprisingly broad genetic variability of the nirS gene. The Chilean matorral is a shrub land plant community which form vegetational patches stabilizing the soil and increasing its nitrogen and carbon content. These islands of fertility may sustain the development and activity of the overall microbial community and of

  16. Designing of zero energy office buildings in hot arid climate

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Abdel-Gwad, Mohamed

    2011-07-01

    The designing of office buildings by using large glass areas to have a transparent building is an attractive approach in the modern office building architecture. This attitude increases the energy demand for cooling specially in the hot arid region which has long sun duration time, while the use of small glazing areas increases the energy demand for lighting. The use of uncontrolled natural ventilation increases the rate of hot ambient air flow which increases the building energy demand for cooling. At the same time, the use of mechanical ventilation to control the air change rate may increase the energy demand for fans. Some ideas such as low energy design concept are introduced for improving the building energy performance and different rating systems have been developed such as LEED, BREEAM and DGNB for evaluating building energy performance system. One of the new ideas for decreasing the dependence on fossil fuels and improving the use of renewable energy is the net zero-energy building concept in which the building generates enough renewable energy on site to equal or exceed its annual energy use. This work depends on using the potentials of mixing different energy strategies such as hybrid ventilation strategy, passive night cooling, passive chilled ceiling side by side with the integrating of photovoltaic modules into the building facade to produce energy and enrich the architectural aesthetics and finally reaching the Net Zero Energy Building. There are different definitions for zero energy buildings, however in this work the use of building-integrated Photovoltaic (BIPV) to provide the building with its annual energy needs is adopted, in order to reach to a Grid-Connected Net-Zero Energy Office Building in the hot arid desert zone represented by Cairo, Egypt. (orig.)

  17. Ecotoxicology for risk assessment in arid zones: some key issues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Everts, J W

    1997-01-01

    In the hot arid zones of the world, ecotoxicological research is in statu nascendi. In these zones, the major sources of contamination by toxicants are: (1) plant protection and vector control in wet zones; (2) large-scale crop protection campaigns in dry and ephemeral wet zones; (3) refuse and obsolete pesticides in dry zones; and (4) mining. Economic development in many of these zones requires an adequate knowledge of certain basic principles, i.e., where extrapolating existing knowledge does not apply. The vulnerability of ecosystems to contaminants is closely related to water flow. In dry areas, species are susceptible to factors that interfere with the ecophysiological properties regulating water loss. Most hot arid areas are found at low latitudes where temperatures show striking extremes both in time and space. Living organisms are physiologically resistant and/or show adaptive behavior to these temperature extremes. Very little is known about the effects of toxicants on these key resistant and adaptive functions, although by extrapolation a few assumptions can be made. The effects of hyperthermia, for instance, can be aggravated by GSH depleting substances, and the temporary disabling effects characteristic of many pesticides may prove fatal under these circumstances. Most wet areas show a spatial concentration of both human activity and wildlife. In mesic zones, the contamination of water represents a health risk to both humans and other living organisms. The vast majority of aquatic communities are those inhabiting temporary pools and streams. Their populations are characterized by short reproductive cycles and/or long dormant stages. Toxicants affecting growth in these areas have been shown to have a deleterious effect. In a synthesis of existing knowledge the most prominent gaps are identified and priorities for further research are made.

  18. Diversity and activity of denitrifiers of chilean arid soil ecosystems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orlando, Julieta; Carú, Margarita; Pommerenke, Bianca; Braker, Gesche

    2012-01-01

    The Chilean sclerophyllous matorral is a Mediterranean semiarid ecosystem affected by erosion, with low soil fertility, and limited by nitrogen. However, limitation of resources is even more severe for desert soils such as from the Atacama Desert, one of the most extreme arid deserts on Earth. Topsoil organic matter, nitrogen and moisture content were significantly higher in the semiarid soil compared to the desert soil. Although the most significant loss of biologically preferred nitrogen from terrestrial ecosystems occurs via denitrification, virtually nothing is known on the activity and composition of denitrifier communities thriving in arid soils. In this study we explored denitrifier communities from two soils with profoundly distinct edaphic factors. While denitrification activity in the desert soil was below detection limit, the semiarid soil sustained denitrification activity. To elucidate the genetic potential of the soils to sustain denitrification processes we performed community analysis of denitrifiers based on nitrite reductase (nirK and nirS) genes as functional marker genes for this physiological group. Presence of nirK-type denitrifiers in both soils was demonstrated but failure to amplify nirS from the desert soil suggests very low abundance of nirS-type denitrifiers shedding light on the lack of denitrification activity. Phylogenetic analysis showed a very low diversity of nirK with only three distinct genotypes in the desert soil which conditions presumably exert a high selection pressure. While nirK diversity was also limited to only few, albeit distinct genotypes, the