Although all five of the major mediterranean-climate ecosystems (MCEs) of the world are recognized as loci of high plant species diversity and endemism, they show considerable variation in regional-scale richness. Here, we assess the role of stable Pleistocene climate and Cenozoic topography in explaining variation in regional richness of the globe's MCEs. We hypothesize that older, more climatically stable MCEs would support more species, because they have had more time for species to accumulate than MCEs that were historically subject to greater topographic upheavals and fluctuating climates.
South-western Africa (Cape), south-western Australia, California, central Chile and the eastern (Greece) and western (Spain) Mediterranean Basin.
We estimated plant diversity for each MCE as the intercepts of species–area curves that are homogeneous in slope across all regions. We used two down-scaled global circulation models of the Last Glacial Maximum (LGM) to quantify climate stability by comparing the change in the location of MCEs between the LGM and present. We quantified the Cenozoic topographic stability of each MCE by comparing contemporary topographic profiles with those present in the late Oligocene and the early Pliocene.
The most diverse MCEs – Cape and Australia – had the highest Cenozoic environmental stability, and the least diverse – Chile and California – had the lowest stability.
Variation in plant diversity in MCEs is likely to be a consequence not of differences in diversification rates, but rather the persistence of numerous pre-Pliocene clades in the more stable MCEs. The extraordinary plant diversity of the Cape is a consequence of the combined effects of both mature and recent radiations, the latter associated with increased habitat heterogeneity produced by mild tectonic uplift in the Neogene.
The aim of the present study is to investigate the morphodynamic regime of the coastal area of Xylokastro (north coast of Peloponnese), in order to identify and evaluate the processes controlling its formation and evolution. Within this concept, a number of factors have been considered and evaluated; near-shore morphometry and granulometry along shore-normal profiles, the direction and potential volumes of long- and cross-shore sediment transport the decadal and future trends of coastline displacement, the available information for terrestrial sediment influx and the geological processes operating in the broader coastal region of Xylokastro (i.e. subaqueous slides) as well as human interference. On the basis of these results, the formation and evolution of this coastal stretch seems to be governed primarily by the neotectonic activity and relative change of sea level rise, and secondarily by the wave-induced near-shore sediment transport; the role of the latter could be enhanced substantially by human intervention (i.e. construction of marina, seafront walls). Moreover, the expected eustatic increase in sea level by the year 2100, could cause a coastline retreat up to 9 m (SLR=0.38 m) or >19 m (SLR≥1 m).
A series of methodologies are described in this paper aiming to quantify the natural hazard due to the coastal changes at a deltaic fan. The coastline of Istiaia (North Evia, Greece) has been chosen for this study as several areas of accretion and erosion have been identified during the past few decades. We combined different types of datasets, extracted from high resolution panchromatic aerial photographs and traced the contemporary shoreline by high accuracy surveying with Real Time Kinematics (RTK) GPS equipment. The interpretation of all shorelines required geo-statistical analysis in a Geographical Information System. A large number of high resolution morphological sections were constructed normally to the coast, revealing erosional and depositional parts of the beach. Retreating and extension rates were calculated for each section reaching the values of 0.98 m/yr and 1.36 m/yr, respectively. The results proved to be very accurate, allowing us to expand the developed methodology by using more complete time-series of remote sensing datasets along with more frequent RTK-GPS surveying.
National and Kapodistrian University of Athens (+30) 210-7274400 Faculty of Geology & Geoenvironment Dpt of Geography & Climatology Panepistimiopolis, Zografou Athens, ZipCode 157-84 email@example.com