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Volume XI |

Atmospheric Pollution by Iceland Volcano Lava Dispersion – the Brussels Case

Abstract: In April 2010 the Icelandic Eyjafjallajökull stratovolcano emitted large clouds of volcanic ashes that provoked chaotic situations for the air traffic of the Northern hemisphere. The impact of the resulting atmospheric pollution may have widespread effects on the health of the populations living in the affected regions. For this reason, the study of the airborne particles brought by the ash clouds must cover not only their concentrations expressed in μg/m3, but also their size, shape and chemical composition. Our results revealed that during the eruption days, some periods with a higher concentration of the coarse particles (between 2.5 and 10 µm) were observed. The sphericity (R1) and roughness (R2) parameters showed specific characteristics of the particles, suggesting long distance of their origin. Furthermore, an increase up to 4 times more in the At% of the elements K, Al, Ca, Na and Si, which characterize the felsic lava, was observed during the eruption period.

Volume XI |

Adoption of NAMEA Air Emission Accounts in Hungary

Abstract: The current phenomena of accelerating climate change and global warming has urged scientists and policy makers to devise a comprehensive and reliable system to identify the main causes and sources of the adverse processes. NAMEA (National Accounting Matrix including Environmental Accounts”) developed by EUROSTAT has gained in popularity as it highlights the impacts of societal action on the environment by linking economic indicators to environmental material flows. The paper reports on the work done in the Hungarian Central Statistical Office to adopt and further develop the NAMEA system and demonstrates the crucial changes occurred in the emission of the major pollutants between 2000 and 2009 taking into consideration economic indicators.

Volume XI |

Using GIS in the Assessment of Landscape visual quality: a Methodological Approach Applied to Piatra Neamt, Romania

Abstract: This study demonstrates the feasibility of using GIS in the assessment of landscape visual quality. Based on the digital elevation model achieved by processing the 1:5000 scale topographic plans, Viewshed analysis application was performed for 5 observation points of the territory, which were selected by objective criteria. We tried to quantify the landscape values of Piatra Neamt administrative territory through an objective analysis of the reality on the ground reflected from the observation points, taking into consideration also the human perception regarding these aspects (a hardly accepted domain by the scientific community). The analysis can lead to precise values of the landscape, yet the only element more difficult to quantify remains human perception. The application was possible starting from the mathematical interpretation of the landscape proposed by Neuray G. in 1987, but a great importance in achieving the expected results is held by the specific GIS techniques mentioned above. The main purpose is to highlight the landscape potential of the area of study, noting that this analysis can be applied to any other area.

Volume XI |

Industrial landscape expansion and evolution in Bucharest’s District 4

Abstract: New urban and environment policies were drafted after 1990 for Bucharest as the Romanian capital city adapts from planned to market economy and reintegrates itself into the European community. As these policies are not from the start fully effective or take time to implement, large areas inside the city, corresponding to former industrial parks, enter a long process of decay. Residential development is making a heavy presence both inside and around the city. As a consequence of these phenomena, the urban and industrial landscape changes dramatically. The study assesses the industrial landscape evolution over time and space in District 4 of Bucharest using available maps for 1900–2010, GIS and field observation forms. Three distinct periods were delimited: 1900–1945 with incipient industrial activity, 1946–1990 when large industrial parks were developed and 1989 – present time, with deindustrialisation and land use change. Environmental problems related to industrial areas decay need to be addressed as the residential area is expanding and neighbours or replaces former industrial sites.

Volume XI |

Land use changes in the Bâsca Chiojdului river basin and the assessment of their environmental impact

Abstract: The paper aims at analyzing the environmental quality of the Bâsca Chiojdului river basin by calculating a variety of environmental indices: human pressure index through population dynamics, human pressure index through agricultural land use, the naturality index, artificialization index and environmental change index. Choosing a 1 km grid for calculating and comparing these indices at the level of the river basin allows a more concise analysis on the environmental quality. Subsequently, the temporal dynamics of the environmental indices values is highlighted by the 40 years interval used especially in the human factor analysis, and by choosing the year 2005 as reference year. The results, embodied in the values obtained by applying formulas to calculate the environmental indices (human pressure index through agricultural land use – 44.19% agricultural land, the naturality index of the landscape – 50.82%; the artificialization index of the landscape – 2.32%; the environmental change index: Maruszczak version – 33.92; the improved version – 1.09, the completed version – 10.83) present the state of the environment. The proposed measures to stabilize and maintain a good environmental quality in the Bâsca Chiojdului river basin regard mainly the forest ecosystem, because it is the most important factor of maintaining the balance by its protective functionality on the environment.