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Ecological Land Classification of Watersheds – Economic Importance
Paulo Pereira MARTINS Junior1,2,
Sidney Augusto Gonçalves ROSA1,
Marco Antonio Martins CANTISANO3,
Lawrence ANDRADE Magalhães Gomes1
1 – Fundação CETEC. Av. J.C. da Silveira 2000. Horto. 31.170-000 Belo Horizonte. email@example.com; Tel.: +55 (31) 3489-2250; FAX +55 (31) 3489-2227.
2 – Universidade Federal de Ouro Preto, Escola de Minas, Departamento de Geologia. Programa de Pós-graduação.
3 – Georadar Ltda., Belo Horizonte.
This article is the first of a series of papers about land-classification: ¾ ecological land classification El-Z, economic land classification En-Z, ecological-economic land classifications EEZ, optimum watersheds land use design OLUD® and certification of the geo-ecological and economic quality of watersheds CGEQ®.
Ecological land classification is an already well established practice. The various classification types presented here point out to the complexity of natural systems, nevertheless. Thus the use of classification types in a plural form for the ecological land-classifications is convenient. As a matter of fact these types of classification can be implemented in various modes due to the complexity and variety of questions relative to the many natural systems – inorganic and organic.
It is presented a detailed reappraisal of the cartographies of ecological zonings which is a fundamental and essential activity for the economic and environmental management of watersheds as well as for the economic production thereof, both for energy production and transformation- industries.
Everywhere in Brazil from the 1980s on the agricultural technology evolution permitted a productivity growth without a significant and proportional increment of demand for new agricultural lands. Nevertheless, the demand for new lands is a real and imperative fact, because of growing demand for food and biomass energy production caused by the increasing population growth rate and international commerce. The Amazon region is under pressure due to many systemic reasons and 18% of the deforested lands are already abandoned. On the other hand, food and energy production together with environmental security and climate changes pose new demands for land, which may grow significantly with time, both for sugar cane (ethanol) and for oil-bearing plants (biodiesel) production. A region-wise analysis shows that demand for agricultural lands is critical in the States of São Paulo, Mato Grosso and Minas Gerais.
The use of cattle - raising lands that are partially or totally abandoned will serve to reduce the demand for new areas to be deforested, theoretically speaking. The Central Government’s control on land use is still ineffective or at least not efficient enough regarding monitoring and penalties for predatory activities. This is a well known fact for predatory activities are a historical tradition and monitoring, controlling and penalization are still inefficient vis-à-vis the enormous economic and political interests.
Questions regarding mining and territory ordering are critical for many watersheds such as those of Paraíba do Sul and Rio das Velhas. In this article it becomes clear the fact that though we are referring to agriculture, forestation, cattle breeding and rural industrialization, these questions are not at all dissociated from other questions such as the urban ones. They are all interconnected with fundamental aspects of watersheds successful management, that are the basis for “Territory Ordering” or “Territory Planning” that can be defined as follows:
ECOLOGICAL ZONING - Ecologic land-classification, El-Z, should be multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary and constitute the bulk of fundamental techniques for regional environmental planning as well as for economic and social planning. They are part of “Interdisciplinary Approach”, which are appropriate for territory ordering.
Various land-classifications were implemented in Brazil, such as the ecological zoning of the Minas Gerais State (1:1.000.000) developed by a team from the University of Lavras and ecological-economic zoning of the Maranhão State. Rio de Janeiro State has established laws which give directives on ecological zoning (Law 4.063 of 01/02/2003. Oliveira (2004) pointed out to the absolutely fundamental aspect of the El-Z zoning.
In previous researches (Martins Jr. & Rosa in Projeto MDBV, 1992-1994; Martins Jr. et al., 1993-a, 1993-b, 1994-a, 1994-b, 1998) it was introduced the homogenous areas of n-order sub-basins classification (orders which are counted from downstream to upstream) to be used as the effective “multi-systems / multi-objectives zoning methods” for homogeneous areas classification with the purpose of watershed land management.
Research and development projects (Projeto MDBV, 1992-1994; Projeto MPEH, 1995-1997; Projeto CRHA, 2002-2006; Projeto GZRP, 2007-2008; Projeto ACEE, 2005-2008) progressively evolved to the proposition of a “Regional geologic agro-environmental and economic penta-type system for planning and management tools – PSPM”. Three of these five tools are useful for multi-systems and multi-objectives watersheds zoning and territory ordering. These three tools must be articulated as computerized tools. They are: Ecologic Zoning El-Z, Economic Zoning Ec-Z and the Ecologic-economic Zoning EEZ. The El-Z is the object of this paper. This triple Basic System of Management Tools BSMT with various types of ecological zoning EZ-L even though disseminated but with variations, became part of the development of a new branch of knowledge proposed to the epistemological field of “Environmental and Agrarian Geosciences” – EAG (Martins Jr., 1998).
Multi and Interdisciplinary Basis The multidisciplinary basis for ecological zoning involves the following sciences: ¾ Environmental Geology EG, Structural Geology SG, Stratigraphy St, Geotechnical Engineering Gt, Pedology Pd, Soils Aptitude SA, Analysis and description of environmental impacts ImA, Hydrology Hy, Hydrogeology Hg, underground Water Recharge Zones WRZ, Precise Areas of underground Water Recharge PAWR (Martins Jr. et al., 2006), Botany Bt, Climatology Cl, Climate changes implications CCI, secondarily Physical Economy PE, Forest Engineering FE, Electrical Engineering EE, Agronomy AE, Agricultural Engineering AE, Financial Economy Fi. As background sciences for implementing management systems we have: Interdisciplinary Logic IL (Martins Jr. et al., idem), Knowledge Engineering KE (Schreiber et al., 2000) and Knowledge Architecture KA (Martins Jr. et al., 2006-2008 Projeto ACEE) and Artificial Intelligence AI.
Quantification Ecologic zoning should not be confused with maps of land use, which are also diagnostic maps with the solely function of describing forms of land use, though in certain cases they also may describe desirable uses. Ecological zoning should neither be mistaken for “Soils Aptitude maps” nor for “Agroclimate maps”, which are forms of zoning techniques but specialized in agricultural production. From another perspective, though not yet commonly practiced in Brazil, Exergetic analysis permits to evaluate various potential situations by expressing watershed potentials in joules. Exergy is that part of the internal energy of any system which is free to do any sort of work in the surrounding environment. As an example, an ecologic zoning with exergetic analysis of nutrients potentials in soils can be mapped by the aerial variability of these potentials expressed in joules with iso-contour lines. Some would say that the aptitude maps produce those types of information but not the quantification of micro-nutrients distribution. Likewise, terrain instability potentials can be also expressed in joules though these researches are not yet well developed for this sort of zoning cartography.
Compartimentalization and transference model These models are of special interest to mass and energy circulation in the various ecosystems compartments, inside each one and among them. This circulation can occur in sequential systems, in parallel systems, in systems with partial superposition or with integral superposition. In this last case, with special distinction regarding qualities and functions variations of interconnected systems.
The notion of compartment and transference analysis is in the root of this sort of zoning. Gersmehl (1976) developed it without the quantitative analysis but he presented a good way to do it. It deals with an operational simplification of the mineral cycle of ecosystems model, which may provide links among the various processes in ecosystems, from location to location. The model gives an explanation of the following aspects: (1) “the total quantity of mineral nutrients inside one system depends on the rate of nutrients entering and leaving the system (2) the quantities of nutrients inside the system, of the living biomass, humus, and soils components of a system are a function of the transference rates of these nutrients among those components (3) with time an ecosystem tends to the equilibrium condition in which the nutrients quantities inside each system and inside each compartment remain the same” (Meentemeyer & Elton, 1977).
ECONOMIC ZONING It should be mentioned that the second system of watersheds zoning En-Z will be discussed in due course with the concept of Physical Economy (Georgescu-Roegen, 1970; Robert Ayres, 1973; Odum, 1996) (Together) as well as the third system, namely the Ecologic-economic zoning – EEZ – an integration of both Ecologic El-Z and Economic En-Z and they will be presented in an oncoming paper.
OPTIMAL LAND USE DESIGN OF TERRITORIES In contrast to the three zoning types (1) ecological (2) economic and (3) ecological-economic, that point out to “what it is” regarding the present real world and watersheds potentials, a fourth system (4) will indicate “what must be” concerning a watershed. This system is called “Optimal Land Use Design of the Territories (in Portuguese DUOT®, in English OLUD®).
CERTIFICATION OF THE ECONOMIC AND GEO-ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY OF WATERSHEDS To articulate the management of watersheds from the economic and geo-environmental point of view it is necessary the development of a system named “Economic and Geo-environmental Quality Certification of Watersheds” EGQC® (in English) and CQBH® (in Portuguese)”. This system will permit to observe the progression from “what was before” to “what can or should be in the future” and “what it has effectively become” provided the management procedures were appropriately applied using the three El-Z, En-Z, EEZ zonings tools and the Optimal Land Use Design of the Territories - EGQC®.
PROBLEMS The central question concerning land use refers to three fundamental aspects. The first one is the El-Z diagnosis which can be of two types:
(1) zoning by themes or zoning by systems, all of them descriptive and with generic information about the existing systems in their state of conservation or degradation and
(2) when an ecological zoning is concerned with objectives referring to any type of possible planning one wants to develop. This second type is not examined in this paper.
Zoning by objectives deals with the question of “what are the ideal conditions for supporting actions and executive projects that maintain the environmental and economic sustainability point of view”.
Such zoning procedure describes not only “what it is” but it should also point out the conditions of sustainability of human interactions with the environment. This zoning version is rather rare as a practice in the Brazilian science and administration but there is one typical case, namely the agricultural zoning conducted by the Federal Ministry for Agriculture M.A.P.A.
This type of land zoning is not the same as the newly proposed “Design of Optimal Land Use of Watersheds” (DOLU®). The method for land zoning practiced by the Ministry for Agriculture M.A.P.A. offers a type of zoning which considers the agro-ecological potentialities for agricultural production.
Economy and especially rural economy is influenced by the feedback from environmental sustainability conditions along time. In the case of no geo-environmental sustainable conditions, economic activities and especially the agricultural ones can be entirely or almost entirely stopped for some time. The central problem of the ecological zoning is the articulation of the geo-environmental thinking, focusing on multi-systems analysis, as a basis for the economic thinking, especially Physical Economy, as both can focus on a simple description of “what it is” and/or an evaluating description of what it is”.
OBJECTIVES (1) To present epistemological-methodological aspects, conceptual ideas, semiotic aspects and some utilitarian means of the El-Z; (2) to discuss some logical and ecological aspects as an inherent part of El-Z to attain the conditions for a more adequate modelling of the ecologic watersheds zoning; (3) to bring into evidence the importance of these types of studies for the Economy as a social activity and for hydroelectricity and biomass energy production.
FUNDAMENTALS Watershed zoning is its classification in homogeneous areas as well as the later integration of all the information that may form cognitive views that presuppose and identify the existence of structures in Nature. In a complementary manner, it is the articulation of the identified structures with human activities.
Therefore, ecological zoning constitutes the first multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary procedure to integrate rural and urban land and territory management in relation to the total watersheds territory. Regarding the “ecological management systems”, EL-Z articulates the diagnosis, which is this type of zoning, with the ontological description of Nature, on one hand, and it can supply premises for an Economic Theory of Land Use, on the other hand. Though the subject of Physical Economy (PhyE) is not in the scope of ecological zoning, it should permeate this type of zoning especially when this zoning is organised by objectives and not solely from an ontological perspective about “what it is”.
ECOLOGICAL ZONINGS Ecological zonings as part of successive steps of a General Model of Watersheds Management are procedures and tools necessarily based on the Multidisciplinary and Interdisciplinary Approaches (Martins Jr., 2002), developed with different methods by different teams of researches. There is not consensus regarding the theoretical and methodological points of view as far as contents and semiotics are concerned. Ecological zoning can be defined as methods with products that can integrate some practices and consensus among the different types of land zonings already made in Brazil. Thus:
This definition is wide enough to include the existing types of zoning already made. On the other hand, the following aspects must be considered in order to standardize this concept:
(2) conceptual recognition and the possibility of various natural systems description
(3) various specialized paradigms in order to organize the wide diagnosis spectrum and finally
(4) reality representation with various semiotic systems.
Once this concept is standardized it is clear the wide spectrum of questions that one can deal with in an ecological zoning. Some issues can be enunciated:
(1) Natural vegetation, agriculture and pastures
(2) Accelerated erosion and infra-structures susceptible to erosion processes
(3) Climate and plants / land / water relationships
(4) Anthropic impacts
(5) Agricultural projects variations in space and time
(6) Rural productivity modelling
(7) Transport systems of production sources and their impacts on natural systems
(8) Systemically susceptible areas and areas with previous impacts
(9) Demographic distribution and production sources
(10) Existing or non-existing logistic systems for rural industries location and for transportation systems
(11) Mining impacts and their situations and
(12) Identification of areas with chemical inputs and their impacts on the trophic chain and other problems and topics.
These examples permit to indicate how far one can go with zoning procedures that rigorously can be as numerous as needed for perceiving, studying and planning the actions concerning the environment and society.
For all intents and purposes El-Z zonings can be considered as tools derived from the “Multidisciplinary and Interdisciplinary Approaches” that are indispensable for planning ecological and economic sustainability models whatever the environmental conditions may be in a region. Anticipating these two “Approaches”, it is necessary to continue the various classical studies of specialized sciences relative to the “Disciplinary Approach” and with the classical disciplinary cartography of those sciences. The “Interdisciplinary Approach” for cartography zoning has some peculiarities regarding the modes of techniques development and their derived contents since it is impossible to represent in a single chart the total reality of any region.
METHODS FOR EL-Z ZONINGS Ecological zonings, given their multiple aspects, still deserve to be improved, and to reach consensus regarding their geo-ecological and economic integration objective, with logic indications of procedures for the various types of possible zonings charts considering the final product, namely the Ecological-economic zoning.
For the development of one of the El-Z zoning type it was applied a method with seven watersheds classification variations in homogeneous areas (Martins Jr. & Rosa, 1994-a; Martins Jr. et al., 2007). This general method was applied to the high Rio das Velhas watershed (MDBV Projet, 1993), as well as to one of its basin– Codornas watershed (Viana, 1998; Cantisano, 1999). However, three distinct and specific methods are developed:
(M-1) The watersheds zoning method with classifications of homogenous areas HAWZ –is a type of geo-ecological watersheds zoning of n-order calculated with many measured variables from Lithostratigraphy, Geomorphology, Pedology, vegetation, watersheds morphometry, Geotechnical Engineering and other sciences with their variables; this permits to evaluate the classification of various watersheds of n-order in homogenous areas inside one bigger watershed, preferably of the 3rd order. The zoning charts types are: (Martins Jr. & Rosa, Projeto MDBV, 1992-1994):
(1) of the various geo-systems and modes of expressing their associations with rock types, geoforms, soils and surface formations in the Geotechnical Engineering sense;
(2) of watersheds according to their morphometry;
(3) of the ideal potential of land use for agricultural, foresting and pastures purposes;
(4) of Geotechnical Engineering with the finality of security, mitigation and civil engineering;
(5) of quantity, quality and surface and underground water circulation;
(6) of natural vegetation and areas with agriculture and/or agricultural projects;
(7) of rivers and brooks assimilative capacity considering the management of the purifying potential of natural surface water affected by pollution.
Those seven variant types of land zoning serve as a basis for a wide geo-ecological zoning and as a support to the economic analysis with special focus on agricultural and engineering questions as well as urban insertions within the watershed.
(M2) Integrated method for watersheds zoning with focal topics ZMFT – it is the zoning method with the same parametric variables of M-1; the results must be plotted over disciplinary topics charts according to specific focal problems (erosion, mining, forests production, roads building, land division etc.). In these cases a series of relationships among surface geodynamics processes should be indicated, relative to in-depth or surface geological structures, on one hand, and relative to the direct watersheds association of the different degrees and their relation to human activities and work, on the other hand.
(M-3) Regional geo-ecological areas zoning method ZMGR – it is equally based on correlations of rocks types, relief, natural vegetation, Geomorphology and Pedology taken together for the whole watershed area in question without considering the nth-orders sub-basins of the major basin but considering the major basin whole area as the unity of analysis.
As results, maps can be plotted with homogenous zones that will be as homogenous as scales of observations and as parameters used as reference for homogeneity determination will permit. Homogenous zones are those that are determined by the correlation of geomorphologic aspects of the relief, the pedological aspects and vegetation ecosystems. At the end of this process maps of sub-basins of 2nd and 3rd orders or of any other order are drawn according to the proportion of a region and convenience vis-à-vis its complexity Then one can compare and evaluate the homogenous zones with the variants M-1 and M-2 of the sub-basins zoning methods.
Both M-1 and M-2 are two zoning methods that should be studied comparatively to check coincidences between great homogeneous areas, for example with the “zoning method of geo-ecological regional areas + vegetation” (M-3) and with “the method of basin classification in homogeneous areas with n-order internal existing sub-basins”. Thus one can have the following optional hypothesis [M-1 + M2] [M-1 + M-3] and [M-2 + M-3]. One can observe how and in what degree the aggregation of sub-basins follows each one of the classified areas in the geo-ecological regional zoning M-3 as well as the distribution of natural vegetation systems eventually still existing. It should be mentioned that even though there are no more remaining natural systems old aerial photos and satellite images can serve as minimal basis for interpreting the previous conditions and the anthropic modifications. The relationship between modifications and present situation will permit to develop projects of environmental and economic mitigation.
GEO-ECOLOGIC ZONING OF HIGH RIO DAS VELHAS WATERSHED IN HOMOGENOUS AREAS - EZHA (variant 1) The High Rio das Velhas basin (Fig. 1) a 2nd order affluent of the São Francisco river, is intensely degraded by erosive processes, and in the particular case of the Codornas sub-basin (Figs. 2), it has almost blocked the Codorna dam that became significantly full of sediments; this process continues actively. Various indications about the human interventions and the natural conditions permitted a case study of geo-ecological zoning according to the variant M-1 of the EZHA method.
Figura 1 – High Rio
das Velhas basin with stratigraphy representation of rocks sequence. Dots
represent eroded areas with very deep gullies, as deep as 60m inside rocks
of various ages with different geotechnical potentials for causing
In the case of the High Rio das Velhas, the zoning of its sub-basins was carried out using the method of ascending hierarchical classification, or group analysis (Davis, 1973) with the rocks, geoforms and soils variables associated with the sub-basins morphometry variables. In the case of the Codornas basin, a 4th order basin in the Rio das Velhas valley, the above mentioned method was equally applied with the addition of data from various Structural Geology and Stratigraphy maps with noteworthy aspects of the relief with the geostructures regarding the topic in question, namely erosion (Cantisano, 1999).
For the High Rio das Velhas basin the homogenous areas classification procedure was applied using the geosystems (rocks + geoforms + soils) in the scale of 1:50.000 and for the Codornas basin the same scale was used. The method of dealing with the bigger area and the larger quantity of variables implied a lower accuracy for the High Rio das Velhas zoning procedure or larger sub-basin aggregation than that applied to the Codornas basin within the same High Rio das Velhas area. The differences become evident in Figures 2 and 4. In Figure 1 it is indicated the Codornas area inside the High Rio das Velhas area.
Figure 2 – Map of the 4th order Codornas basin division into 35 sub-basins situated between 20º 07’ 20” e 20º 17’ 20” south latitude and 43º 50’ 00’’ and 44º 00’ 00” West longitude with approximately 103 km2 in Itabirito and Nova Lima counties accessible trough Via JK (Br 040) and the the road to Ouro Preto.
Variant M-1 ecological zoning EZHA of Codornas basin The results were obtained with the articulation of the Disciplinary, Multidisciplinary and Interdisciplinary Approaches (Martins Jr. et al., 2000; Cantisano, 1999) in the following modes: (1) the preparation of the litho-stratigraphic, topographic, structural geology, geomorphological, erosion and sub-basins maps (2) the multidisciplinary articulations of a pair of close natural systems, for example [soils and forms] or [soils and erosion], [rocks types and erosion], [rocks attitudes and erosion] (3) in an interdisciplinary mode all the parametric variables of the structures’ descriptive data in each sub-basin must be considered for the sub-basins land classification (Figures 4 and 5).
Figure 3 – Results of nine integration tests with the Group Analysis method; in the last of a series of test it became evident a division in homogeneous areas, which is the best characteristics representation of the sub-basin aggregation in Codornas basins (Figure 2), considering lithostratigraphy (rocks areas), geomorphology (geoforms areas), pedology (soils areas), morphometry (morphometric variables) and erosion (Cantisano, 1999).
Figure 4a - Zoning classification of the Codornas basin considering its sub-basins with the indication of homogenous areas association with erosion foci as well as with rocks.
REGIONAL GEO-ECOLOGICAL AREAS ZONING METHOD ZMGR The Entre Ribeiros basin in the Paracatu valley was studied with the M-3 method. This basin is utilised for intensive mechanised agriculture projects, mainly with irrigation. This is due to the favourable topography, mostly in the central part of the basin. Nevertheless the rapid expansion of these projects in the last years of the 1980s produced and still produces ecological conflicts with the natural dynamics. The non-controlled occupation of cultivated areas the intensification of water use in the production process and the non-planned utilisation of natural resources, mainly water, generate environmental and social non-conformities in Entre Ribeiros (Andrade, 2007). As a consequence, the indications about the anthropic interventions and the natural conditions permitted the elaboration a geo-ecologic zoning case study as mentioned above for the M-3 method.
Land classification of the Entre Ribeiros basin consisted of the “Disciplinary and Multidisciplinary Approaches” articulation in the following modes: (1) with the extraction of variables from the litho-stratigraphic and topographic maps, special aspects of the relief and soils types and (2) with the multidisciplinary approach, one articulates the dynamics of close systems, for example soils and forms, soils and rocks, rocks and forms with the correlation matrix method. This variables intersection permits to verify the interchange and the inter-relations among the various classes in the basin area. After that, it is verified their association frequency relative to the total basin area. With these results it is possible to classify according to the larger incidences of association and thus to filter and select the most representative interactions classes. Then one should analyse and interpret these associations, highlighting the most relevant physiographic characteristics of the areas supported by altimetry maps, contour lines curves and terrain elevation model. Aero-photogrametry and satellite images with field work verification were used for the interpretation of vegetation coverage and anthropic modifications. Subsequently the areas are morpho-pedologically classified and finally the homologous zones are established and they define the regional homogeneous areas units in the basin as a whole.
Tables 1 and 2 show the results of variables interactions among the classes in a matrix format, the first one indicating the relative values of incidence and the second one points out the association. Both show the most frequent and emblematic classes. It is worth mentioning that within the 287 possibilities of observed interactions, 45 correspond to almost 86% of the total basin area. One can notice that the 242 remaining interactions, that is 14% of the total area, were also analysed, translated and classified with the proposal of identifying Unities concerning their specific characteristics.
Table 2 – Correlation matrix among Geomorphology, Lithostratigraphy and Pedology classes focusing on the association index among these classes (Andrade, 2007).
The ZMGR results for the homogenous areas classification of the total Entre Ribeiros basin obtained with the geosystems variables are as follows: 1 – areas of raised tabular surface; 2 – ridge and downhill areas; 3 – mound and downhill areas; 4 – areas associated with limestone; 5 – areas of intermediate tabular surface; 6 – pediments areas - areas of lowered tabular surface; 7 – areas of hydromorphism and alluvial plains; Figure 6 presents the regional homogeneous areas in geo-environmental zoning.
Figure 5 – Geo-environmental homogenous areas based on classification regarding the territory of the Entre Ribeiros total ecosystems, a 3rd order basin, in the Paracatu valley. In many situations, vegetation may tend to present a phytogeographic distribution that may also be a phyto-ecological distribution
CONCLUSIONS Ecological zoning E-LZ carried out using any of the above discussed methods presents the basis for ecological and economic studies about the aspects of natural stability of rocks, soils and relief systems, considering characteristics such as: (1) association of natural vegetation, rocks and soils (2) erosion and sensibility to erosion (3) areas for mitigation (4) areas for agriculture (5) state of natural systems alteration (6) typology of economic activities and ensuing impacts and other consequent topics.
Any and every type of ecological zoning is carried out to serve as a basis for integral studies of Territory Ordering, that aims at being a useful information basis for decision making (of) regarding regional development projects and for the environmental and economical management of watersheds and biomes. In the sequence of zoning methods and products, it is the fundamental level.
According to the detailed scale adopted in the zoning procedure one can divide a watershed in sub-basins and classify them in homogenous areas. The classification of homogenous areas with the sub-basins offers the associations among natural unities, and therefore the right unities associated with the evolution of relief and surface water circulation.
Every E-LZ zoning gives answers to various decision making needs about issues regarding sustainability, limitation to human interventions, mitigation, adequate areas for agricultural activities, for reforesting and for the development of energy production with hydroelectric dams and biomass. In many cases of specific objectives like these last two, the E-LZ should be associated with “maps of soils aptitude” and “maps of profiles entropy of the sub-basins” of any order with which one can obtain the indication of hydrological potential areas. These are the first zoning types that are part of a sequence of studies for the production of ecological and economic tools for watersheds management. They include fundamental information about regional geotechnology, the geosystems, the morphometry of sub-basins, the assimilative capacity of rivers, the right use of lands for agriculture, pastures and foresting, the terrains for civil engineering, the first basis for modelling Physical Economy for any type of production related to natural resources, to natural energy availability and to the potential spaces for the production of energy from biomass; they permit to prepare the basis for relative quantitative modelling of areas for preservation, conservation and for food and energy / biomass production in a rational manner focused on food offer and demands and also on other interesting (themes) topics of the economic spectrum. Those territory zonings are previous to and necessary for the Optimal Land Use Design of the Territories (in Portuguese DUOT®, in English OLUD®).
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Monday, 24 October 2011.