Volume XIII |

Preliminary data on the Jiu River meanders in the lower course (South-West Romania)

Abstract: The aim of this study is the complex monitoring of the Jiu river bed in terms of geometry and complexity of meanders in its lower sector (on a length of 77 km). The detailed analysis of the lower Jiu sector meanders completes the geomorphologic knowledge of rivers in Romania, starting from the identification and determination of the type of meanders: the results that were achieved are represented by the indexes concerning their age and migration rate (wavelength, 1977 – 4721 m; meanders amplitude, 511 – 2862 m; the mean radius of curvature, 270 – 997 m and the sinuosity index, from 0.87 to 2.17). Another aim of this study is the identification of the evolution features of the Jiu river, the relationships between some hydrological factors of control (liquid flow and suspended sediments – annual average values) and the generations of meanders (actual or open meanders, and incised meanders or paleomeanders) distributed in two sectors: Podari – Padea sector and the sector stretching from Padea up to the Danube confluence. In addition, our concern is motivated by the fact that in the last years there were analyzed the landslides and subsidence on the right slope of the Jiu river (next to Bâzdâna and Drănic settlements), strongly eroded and in close connection with the meandering of the watercourse.

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.

Volume X |

Indicators of the Human Pressure on the Environment in the Bălăciţa Piedmont

Abstract: The Bălăciţa Piedmont represents the western subdivision of the Getic Piedmont, being located in south-western Romania. The unit under study is an early inhabited space and, at the same time, an area of active development of numerous geodynamic phenomena. The man-induced changes had significant influences upon the environment and especially upon the relief, the increased vulnerability of the terrains to the dangerous geomorphologic phenomena being one of the most important problems that the local communities have to face nowadays. The present study aims to assess the human influence upon the emergence of environmental unbalances and especially the human actions that influence the risk geomorphologic processes. A relevant means in the process of evaluating the type and dimension of the human intervention within a given territorial unit concerns the computation of certain synthetic indicators that characterize the degree of landscape transformation. The assessment has been realized through the analysis of statistical data at the level of the administrative-territorial units that overlap the Bălăciţa Piedmont. The general research regards an interval of thirty years (1977 – 2007), while the focus was laid upon the transition period (1992, 2002, and 2007).

Volume IX |

The Analysis of the Relief Fragmentation Features within the Bălăciţa Piedmont

Abstract: Within the Bălăciţa Piedmont there are to be distinguished two areas with specific features, which correspond to the Danube catchment and to the Jiu drainage area. Both in the case of the drainage density, as well as in that of the relief energy, the distribution of the value classes correlated with the two catchments underlines major differences, but also certain resemblances, situation which is explained by the evolution time, the base level, the flow direction in relation with the structure and the lithological and climatic homogeneity. The analysis of the data enabled the quantification of the relief energy and of the drainage density within the Bălăciţa Piedmont, as well as the correlation of the two parameters in report to the main catchments. The computation and representation methods for the two indicators of the relief fragmentation (i.e. the depth and the density) allowed for a quantitative interpretation (the identification of five value classes), as well as for a spatial interpretation (the grouping of the values depending on the two collecting rivers: the Danube and the Jiu). The aggregation of the influence factors on the two main drainage areas is mostly due to the fact that the Danube catchment extended its area in the detriment of the Jiu catchment, the three more important tributaries (the Blahniţa, the Drincea and the Desnăţui) catching sectors within the upper course of the tributaries of the Jiu. The analysis of the relief fragmentation within the Bălăciţa Piedmont shows that this unit is on different evolution stages. The complexity of the fragmentation is closely connected to the maturity degree of the valleys and to the morphogenetic complexes imposed by the paleogeographical evolution.

Volume IX |

Social Vulnerability and Risks Associated to the Balkan Endemic Nephropathy in Mehedinţi County

Abstract: The Balkan Endemic Nephropathy (BEN), commonly known as “the dry kidney disease”, was observed for the first time in 1957 in Ergheviţa village from Mehedinţi County. Although, the phenomenon was mainly studied by doctors for a period of approximately 50 years, the number of cases increased, but the actual cause of the disease was not discovered yet. Among the mainly incriminated elements, there is to be mentioned the underground water that crosses through the coal deposit located in the Huşnicioara mines. It is important to notice the fact that this disease affects only the rural space, most of the effective areas of the disease being concentrated around the urban centres like Drobeta Turnu-Severin, Baia de Aramă, Strehaia and Vânju Mare. The respective rural communities are considered to be truly vulnerable to the poor quality of underground waters. Given the fact that new cases of nephropathy are continuously discovered, one of the hypothesis is that the risk induced by the pollution of underground water layers is significant and that the human communities are highly vulnerable to this element.The present study identifies the actual status regarding the symptoms and the extension of the disease, as well as the economical-social circumstances that favour the occurrence of the cases, representing a strong signal concerning the human communities vulnerable to the pollution of a natural resource that is indispensable to human life – water.