4 Koiliaris Critical Zone Observatory (GR)


eLTER TA site

  • Dominant ecosystem: Karstic - mixed land use
  • Access: By car, 25 km east of Chania, Greece
  • DEIMS site code: CZO_EU_GR_01

Koiliaris River watershed is a Critical Zone Observatory on the island of Crete that represents severely degraded soils due to heavy agricultural impact, such as grazing, over many centuries. Scientific focus: An exemplary site for studying Mediterranean soils under imminent threat of desertification due to climate change. The main type of soil degradation in the basin is water erosion due to the clearing of forests and natural vegetation for cropping and livestock grazing. De-vegetation and inappropriate cultivation practices induces soil organic matter losses making soils susceptible to erosion and desertification with global consequences for food security, climate change, biodiversity, water quality, and agricultural economy. Key research areas are water resources management and sustainable management of soils, hydrological modelling of complex terrains, high frequency environmental monitoring, soil degradation and soil formation, stream and ground water chemistry.


Technical University of Crete (TUC)
Mail icon from Elegant Themes Nikolaos P. Nikolaidis, nikolaos.nikolaidis@enveng.tuc.gr


Research  Research & Development

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eLTER H2020 project