Landforms, Soils and Man in the Tropics

  • Alfred Wirthmann


This final section of the book is not going to deal with direct and intentional changes of the geomorphology of a landscape, such as the terracing of slopes or the damming of reservoirs of all sizes, which create a new slope runoff or fluvial regime. In principle they have a morphologically stabilizing effect, although once in a while the effect will be opposite, as in the case of a soil slip following intensive soaking of a slope with rainfall-collecting terraces. Of interest is also the unintentional and often excessive erosion at the downstream foot of reservoir dams, especially where a spillway was turned into an artificial waterfall. In this way a plunge pool 50 m deep was excavated without any erosion tools in only four years at the foot of the Kariba Dam of the Zambezi River (H.H. Thomas 1976, as quoted by Young 1985).


Plunge Pool Slope Runoff Excessive Erosion Humid Savanna Soil Slip 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alfred Wirthmann
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Geography and GeoecologyUniversity of KarlsruheKarlsruheGermany

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