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Volume XX |

Treehouse tourism: issues and way forward

Abstract: Tourism is a major global sector relevant for many economies, however it is also recognized that tourism brings various negative social, cultural, economic and environmental impacts. This is particularly the case of conventional/mass tourism. Different forms of so called – alternative tourism – are supposed to offset these negative impacts and to promote a more sustainable development. Treehouse tourism (TT) fits within these new sustainable and experiential trend. We must also recognize a grooving need to provide unique, specific travel and accommodation experiences by the tour operators and hoteliers, in order to be competitive with others. This, in turn, leads to an overuse of the term sustainable, in the situations which are not sustainable at all. Still, though the TT is widely recognized by world tour operators, the academic literature and associable debate on this topic is almost non-existent.
The present article focuses on specifics, gaps and challenges of TT from biological, social and environmental perspective. At the end, most remarkable recommendations are provided – including the general TT model. Because of lack of previous literature, debate and the comparable statistics, the paper should be considered more as a start of debate, than a comprehensive analysis.

Volume XX |

Does the online education ensure the effectiveness of teaching and evaluation of Geography?

Abstract: Online education developed greatly during the Covid 19 Pandemic. Although there were online learning and teaching resources before 2020, they were not sufficiently tested or used. In modern geography, students must develop their skills, knowledge, be motivated and involved in geographic inquiry. Our objectives are related to the research question of this study, namely how students perceive this new form of evaluation, online evaluation, and whether they have certain preferences related to the tools used in online assessment (Google Forms and Wordwall). Data on students’ perceptions regarding these online assessment tools were collected through an online questionnaire on a sample of 85 fifth graders. The analysis methods were word cloud analysis and multivariate statistical analysis. The results obtained showed that students are open to online assessment through new methods. Moreover, this type of assessment offers them a simpler alternative to learn, with them better understanding or easily remembering the taught lesson. The appearance of the two user-friendly interface platforms or the easy to use mode is an important variable perceived by students, as they can induce in students the joy of participating in an online competition. There are also negative aspects reported by them, especially related to concerns regarding the internet connection or to time given being too short. The usefulness of these tools is not to be neglected at all, given that the target group has been continuing online education for more than a year and the teaching-learning process must adapt to the current context.

Volume XX |

Risk of Dynamics of the River Stream in Tectonic Areas. Case studies: Curvature Carpathian – Romania and Maghrebian Chain – Algeria

Abstract: The tectonic characteristics of the Alpine orogeny highlight some similarities in the genesis of landforms over large areas. This paper analyses the role of tectonic processes in two subsiding areas with uplift movements. The overall tectonic activity implies the formation and evolution of the hydrographic network and its correlation with the major relief structure, thus forming streams parallel to the high-altitude lines, as well as consistent, transversal, and subsequent streams.
These tectonic processes are accompanied by antecedents and/or epigenesis common in the Eastern Carpathians, Romania. Hence the Bistrița River is longitudinal compared to the Bistrița and the Stânișoara Mountains, but also transversal in other sectors. In Algeria, the Northeast, especially the Zighoud Youcef zone (NE of Constantine), is characterized by a particular morphography and morphometry of the river basins which reveals reorganizations of the river network through their transversal or longitudinal characteristics compared to the structure and tectonics of the region. In areas with imminent catchments, the regressive erosion amplifies the slope dynamics and slope processes vulnerability.
The uplift and subsidence movements impose reorganizations of the hydrographic network of the catchments with the alternation of the erosion and sedimentation processes it creates a certain fluvial style pattern. In the subsidence of the Întorsura Buzăului depression, the longitudinal profile of the Buzău River has a very low slope and its meanders create islets. This is subject to frequent floods which imposed the riverbed regularization. However, in Zighoud Youcef, the Oued Smendou River also indicates some similarities with the Buzău River structure due to subsiding areas of the Mila-Constantine basin.

Volume XX |

Estimating Soil Erosion Exerted by Water in the Lower Sector of the Jiu River Floodplain and Băilești Plain

Abstract: This paper aims to identify the main areas prone to soil erosion exerted by water within the Băilești Plain and in the lower section of the Jiu River Corridor, a region with a very high agricultural potential. The study is concerned with rainfall erosion. Computing this type of erosion helps us to give better solutions for mitigating topsoil loss rate. For quantifying the amount of soil eroded, we used and adapted RUSLE equation. The obtained values we computed for RUSLE within our area range between 0 and 8.89 t-1/ha-1/yr-1. The most exposed areas to soil erosion exerted by water are located on the steep slopes, in the North-East of our study area, where the rainfall erosivity factor has the highest values, soil erodability factor (K-factor) is also very high, and cover-management factor (C) has the biggest value.

Volume XX |

Comparative analysis on the role of vegetation in controlling the potential effects of gas stations on residential areas

Abstract: When considering human activities with potential negative effects in urban environment, gas stations are a hot topic. For over one century their presence increased associated to the number of vehicles used in cities, and frequently they are associated with residential areas – where the highest number of users are present. Acknowledging their potential effects, gas stations are a response to a high demand in cities – that of mobility. This is especially relevant in Central and Eastern Europe cities (such as Bucharest), which continue to be dominated by cars and alternative models of transportation are present in lower proportions. In the present study we started from extracting with field observations the present characteristics of gas stations in Sector 4 of Bucharest. We applied 31 field observation sheets using Survey 123, containing information about their emplacement and accessibility, the presence and structure of vegetation, etc. We compared results to those of 120 questionnaires applied to the population. Our results revealed the important role the presence of vegetation has on reducing the negative effects of gas stations (both observed and perceived), the differences between populations living in the proximity of gas stations and other residents, and also the fulfilment of legal requirements. We consider our results to be extremely relevant and useful instruments for urban planners and decision-makers in their efforts of improving the quality of life and wellbeing in cities.