Micaela Isabel Vargas Garnica
Co-supervisors: Prof. Michel Jaboyedoff, Rafael Tapia
Expert : Karen Sudmeier-Rieux
Whilst managing a territory, several considerations should be accounted for in order to establish an appropriate use of the land. Proper soil use is thereby conditioned by environmental risks which include instability of slopes.
This instability that soil slopes are subjected to, is mostly due to a combination of natural factors including its morphology, topography of the area, geology, soil characteristics (vegetation, rainfall or surface runoff) as well as key factors like the anthropic deforestation and human interface like construction works performed in a particular soil.
This study presents a methodology for determining the sensitivity of stable and unstable areas to environmental risks (principally to landslides) using different variables such as slope analysis, vegetation index, classification of land and a water flow accumulation study. The analysis was carried out in two areas in the province Colomi (Cochabamba-Bolivia), two areas that have been characterized in recent years to be sensitive to the repetitve hazard of landslides.
With the use of SIG tools, a spatial analysis model was developed designed to obtain maps of stability-instability of the affected area. This model will help identify the presence of environmental hazards in the areas of study and it also constitutes a tool to prevent and control associated environmental risks. Moreover, this model could be useful for other soil locations with similar characteristics.
Recommendations were made to reduce the environmental risks in the areas of study, taking into account the socio-economic reality of the area.
A brief introduction is also presented regarding the perception of environmental risks by the local population. Some of the most important social factors that have to do with environmental risk are herein detailed also.