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Forest Cover Change in the Parâng-Cindrel Mountains of the Southern Carpathians, Romania

  • Emil MarinescuEmail author
  • Ioan Eustaţiu Marinescu
  • Alina Vlăduţ
  • Sidonia Marinescu
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Part of the Environmental Science and Engineering book series (ESE)

Abstract

Forest cover change over the last century in the Parâng-Cindrel Mountains in the central part of the Southern Carpathians is analyzed. The Parâng-Cindrel Mountains stand out as one of the tallest Romanian Carpathian ranges characterized by massiveness and relatively wild forest areas preserved in spite of the intensive population and related human activities. Three main cartographic products addressing three major time stages were used: Austrian military maps from the end of the nineteenth century and the beginning of the twentieth century, topographic maps from the 1960s, and Corine Land Cover Data from 2006 that were the inputs to a unique cumulative map of the forest cover change over the last century. In order to quantify forest fragmentation, various landscape metrics were calculated and morphological spatial pattern analysis was performed. By analyzing and interpreting forest change, we found three main periods related to major anthropogenic disturbances. At the beginning of the twentieth century, the most significant forest changes appeared in the northeastern part of the study area (Northern Cindrel Mountains) where human influence was mostly caused by the need to extend the grazing area and by high-altitude settlements related to an intensive pastoral activity that reached its widest extension in the Southern Carpathians. The second stage of drastic reductions was in the 1970s when large hydrotechnical constructions appeared, especially the Lotru and Sebeş watersheds and adjacent logging, which increased timber harvesting rates and tourist infrastructure in the area. The third stage was is the post-socialist period due to a forest ownership change and lax institutional policies that caused an increase of forest harvesting for the purpose of large, short-term profit, which generated an overexploitation of the forests.

Keywords

Forest Owner Landscape Metrics Forest Exploitation Forest Cover Change Hydrotechnical Construction 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Emil Marinescu
    • 1
    Email author
  • Ioan Eustaţiu Marinescu
    • 1
  • Alina Vlăduţ
    • 1
  • Sidonia Marinescu
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of GeographyUniversity of CraiovaCraiovaRomania

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