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Title: Natural to anthropogenic forcing in the Holocene evolution of three coastal lagoons (Caldas da Rainha valley, western Portugal)
Authors: Dinis, J. L. 
Henriques, V. 
Freitas, M. C. 
Andrade, C. 
Costa, P. 
Issue Date: 2006
Citation: Quaternary International. 150:1 (2006) 41-51
Abstract: In the coast of Central Portugal three lagoons were created by the Holocene flooding of diapiric-related depressions but experienced afterwards a significant sediment accumulation. Fast environmental and morphological changes after the Middle Holocene were clearly forced by anthropogenic activities since the Middle Ages and show a strong feedback on the human communities. Erosion in the studied watersheds depends on climatic and anthropic changes; especially, demographic rises increase agriculture and deforestation in the watersheds, and sedimentation in the lagoons. The region was successively occupied by ethnic groups since the Neolithic (including Romans, Sueves, Visigoths and Muslims), but the main changes were largely due to anthropic forcing following the Christian Reconquest by the Kingdom of Portugal. In fact, during the Middle Ages and Renaissance the area had intense nautical, fishing and agricultural activities, even if reduced during the 14th century crisis. Later, due to severe sediment accumulation and shoaling, sailing was drastically reduced and most of the area drowned in the maximum transgression was claimed to farming. It is also noteworthy that the social evolution and sediment entrainment in the watersheds appear to be in tune with climatic trends deduced after regional and global data. In synthesis, we conclude that the human activities during the last millennium greatly accelerated the natural silting trend of the lagoons.
DOI: 10.1016/j.quaint.2006.01.025
Rights: openAccess
Appears in Collections:FCTUC Ciências da Terra - Artigos em Revistas Internacionais

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