Geodiversity evaluation and geoconservation using grid analysis: case study, north of Ilam Province

Mehdi Ahmadi*, Davoud Mokhtari, Masood Khodadadi, Himan Shahabi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The north of Ilam Province in Iran has a great variety of geodiversity features, and the presence of geodiversity resources, along with other geological and geomorphological values, has enriched the area. The purpose of the present study is to evaluate the geodiversity in the north of Ilam Province. The main indices for assessing geodiversity in the present study include geology, geomorphology, geomorphosites, paleontology, pedology, hydrology, mineral resources, and fossil species. In addition to assessing geodiversity, the hazard maps of the area were also prepared and overlapped with the geodiversity attraction maps, to identify areas with high geodiversity attraction as well as areas with high vulnerability. The results showed that 71% of the region had moderate and high attraction in terms of geodiversity indices. The most attractive areas are located in the north, center, and southeast of the region, which include the entire protected area of Manesht, Bankul, and Ghalarang; the Gachan and Arghavan area; and to the south the Sivan Arch and the Kabir Kuh area. The hazard map analysis also showed that the areas with the highest score in terms of geodiversity indices had many hazards indicating high sensitivity, unsustainable exploitation, and a growing trend of their destruction. All areas with high geodiversity attraction are exposed to severe human hazards. Most of these hazards are concentrated in the center and southeast of the region, which corresponds to areas with high geodiversity attraction. Due to their specific sensitivities, these areas can maintain their existence if they are exploited in a sustainable manner; otherwise, we will see these resources degraded and destroyed in the future.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages17
JournalApplied Geomatics
Early online date13 May 2021
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 13 May 2021

Keywords

  • geodiversity
  • evaluation
  • geoconservation
  • grid analysis
  • Ilam province

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