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Natural Hazards and Earth System Sciences An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 15, issue 1 | Copyright
Nat. Hazards Earth Syst. Sci., 15, 97-107, 2015
© Author(s) 2015. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Research article 13 Jan 2015

Research article | 13 Jan 2015

Estimation of regional differences in wind erosion sensitivity in Hungary

G. Mezősi1, V. Blanka1, T. Bata1, F. Kovács1, and B. Meyer2 G. Mezősi et al.
  • 1Department of Physical Geography and Geoinformatics, University of Szeged, Szeged, Hungary
  • 2Institut für Geographie, Universität Leipzig, Leipzig, Germany

Abstract. In Hungary, wind erosion is one of the most serious natural hazards. Spatial and temporal variation in the factors that determine the location and intensity of wind erosion damage are not well known, nor are the regional and local sensitivities to erosion. Because of methodological challenges, no multi-factor, regional wind erosion sensitivity map is available for Hungary. The aim of this study was to develop a method to estimate the regional differences in wind erosion sensitivity and exposure in Hungary.

Wind erosion sensitivity was modelled using the key factors of soil sensitivity, vegetation cover and wind erodibility as proxies. These factors were first estimated separately by factor sensitivity maps and later combined by fuzzy logic into a regional-scale wind erosion sensitivity map. Large areas were evaluated by using publicly available data sets of remotely sensed vegetation information, soil maps and meteorological data on wind speed. The resulting estimates were verified by field studies and examining the economic losses from wind erosion as compensated by the state insurance company. The spatial resolution of the resulting sensitivity map is suitable for regional applications, as identifying sensitive areas is the foundation for diverse land development control measures and implementing management activities.

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