Investigating the effect of seismicity on spatial sediment sources and loads using the fingerprinting approach

A - Papers appearing in refereed journals

Ashtari, N., Nosrati, K., Ommi, S. and Collins, A. L. 2023. Investigating the effect of seismicity on spatial sediment sources and loads using the fingerprinting approach. Catena. 227 (15 June), p. 107091.

AuthorsAshtari, N., Nosrati, K., Ommi, S. and Collins, A. L.

Elevated soil erosion and suspended sediment loss are some of the most severe environmental problems in the river catchments of Iran. Seismic activity is known to elevate sediment loss and this study investigated sediment sources and loads in the Talar Drainage Basin in Iran, in the context of earthquake frequency and magnitude. A catalogue of earthquakes in the study region was assembled to estimate the expected high-frequency ground motions (i.e., Peak Ground Acceleration (PGA)). The horizontal ground acceleration was estimated using five global and reginal attenuation relationships. To fingerprint sub-basin spatial sediment sources in the study area, two size fractions (<63 μm and 63–125 μm) and 49 geochemical elements were analysed on 30 sediment samples collected from three potential tributary sub-basin spatial sediment sources and 10 target sediment samples collected at the overall basin outlet. Source contributions were estimated using a Bayesian un-mixing model. The estimated relative contributions of the individual spatial sediment sources for both the <63 μm fraction (51.9%
(48.6–55.3), 48 % (44.6–51.3), and 0. 1% (0–0.2)) and 63–125-μm fraction (68.2% (66.4–69.8), 31.7% (30.1–33.6), and 0.1 % (0–0.2)) correlated with recorded seismic events. The correlations between sub-basin specific sediment loads and PGA were r = 0.68 for the <63 μm fraction and r = 0.99 for the 63–125 μm fraction. The results demonstrate that seismic activity and ground acceleration can elevate erosivity and erodibility factors. This study supports environmental planners for targeting management to reduce elevated suspended sediment loads and preserve fluvial habitats.

KeywordsFingerprinting; Sediment loss ; Peak ground acceleration; Seismicity; Probabilistic seismic hazards assessment
Year of Publication2023
Journal citation227 (15 June), p. 107091
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)
Web address (URL)
Open accessPublished as green open access
FunderResearch Council of Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran, Iran
Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council
Funder project or codeGrant number 600.871 from the research council of Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran, Iran
S2N - Soil to Nutrition - Work package 3 (WP3) - Sustainable intensification - optimisation at multiple scales
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online30 Mar 2023
Publication process dates
Accepted16 Mar 2023
PublisherElsevier Science Bv

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