Water Layer for Map Maker                                                                   Edit this article

by Nazarhayath Khan                                                                          

Aim

  • To propose a `Water Layer’ addition in the GMM Tool with a justification and working details.

Overview

  • As the GMM Mapping Tool was initially developed primarily keeping in view the needs for the roads and places, it  is not suited to handle the `Water Features’ appropriately  and comprehensively.

  • And over the years, the primary focus has been on the roads and places.  As such, some  areas such as the water, topology, ecology etc; and the elements that fall under them, have been neglected and not mapped to the desired extent and specificity. The oceans, the ocean currents  and their trade routes have not even been touched.

  • This Paper aims to fill these gaps by proposing a dedicated `Water’ Layer and improvements in the Mapping Tool  to make it capable of handling  the required tasks.

  • The proposed `Water’ Layer will enable the Mapper to get an uncluttered view by choosing only one or more Layers. And, similarly, the Viewer or the User could select only this Layer if he wishes see/print only the Water system.

Objectives

  • To recommend  a proposal along the existing Map Maker format of  `Point of Interest’, `Line Feature’ and `Polygon’.

  • To provide Definitions of the proposed features, for the benefit of Mapper,   based on the international standards (IUCN etc);  and  where international standards are not available, use the universally available public sources such as the Wiki/other. The definitions to provide distinguishing characteristics to allow discerning among the similar features. The Definitions also to provide  examples of features where considered necessary.

  • To propose appropriate symbols/colours for display on Map.

  • To propose mapping attributes (size, shape, grade level etc) associated with features.

Table of Contents

Part 1 : Categories, Sub-categories, Sub-sub-categories
Part 2 : Definitions  (IUCN/Wiki)

Note: Since the Mappers come from diverse backgrounds and with varying educational background, the Definitions are intentionally kept  detailed in order to provide them a good understanding of features that is to be mapped.

Part 1 : Categories, Sub-categories, Sub-sub-categories

  • Water covers approximately 70 percent of the Earth’s surface.  Only 2.5 percent of the Earth’s water is fresh. Of that 2.5 percent, more than two-thirds is locked up in the glaciers. The most abundant and available source of fresh water is underground water supplies or wellsprings known as `aquifers’. On Earth, 99% of glacial ice is contained within the vast ice sheets in the polar regions, but glaciers may also be found in mountain ranges of every continent except Australia. In the tropics, glaciers occur only on high mountains.

  • Map Display Concepts

  • Water Line Feature
  • Blue line with inbuilt  arrows to indicate direction of flow of  water. (A to B & B to A like roads)

  • Water Navigation Route

  • Black Line with arrow to indicate direction.

  • Water Navigation Route will be applicable to:

  • Channel

  • River

  • Canal

  • Lake

  • Sea

  • Ocean

  • Ocean currents (e.g. Gulf Stream)

  • Black Dashes with arrows to indicate direction of the ocean current.

  • Water Polygon colour (for rivers, canals, lakes etc)

  • Light transparent blue shade to make the features below visible.

  • Points of Interest

  • In Nature

    • Glacier

    • Lake

    • Pond

    • Water Hole

    • Waterfall

    • Water Park

    • Well

    • Aquifer

    • Spring

    • Stream

    • Creek

    • Brook

    • Rivulet

    • Tributary

    • Rill

    • Bay

    • High tide zone

    • Gulf

    • Coast/Coastal zone

    • Pelagic coast

    • Cove

    • Estuary

    • Lagoon

    • Shore

    • Sea

    • Ocean

    • Ocean current

    • Sea Route

    • Island

  • Man Made

    • Dam

    • Barrage

    • Canal

    • Flood Gates

    • Barrage

    • Well

    • Water mill

    • Water Wheel

    • Canal Lock

    • Boat lift

    • Water Park

    • Aquarium

    • Fountain

    • Hydo-Power

    • Hydroelectric

    • Ocean route

    • Sea Route

    • Desalination plant

    • Light House

    • Harbor

    • Port

      • Fishing

      • Dry

      • Warm Water

      • Cargo

    • Port Terminals

      • Oil

      • Bulk

      • Container

      • Cargo

      • Car

    • Dyke/Levee

    • Spillway

    • Breakwater

    • Seawall

    • Jetty

    • When used in static role over water surface (Hotel, Bridge etc)

      • Vessel

      • Ship

      • Boat

      • Barge

  • Line Features

  • Channel

  • Small Channel

  • Map display

    • Blue dashes

  • Elevation

    • Normal

    • Aqueduct

      • Bridge

      • Overpass

      • Underpass

      • Skyway

      • Aqua-tunnel

  • Big  Channel

  • Map display

    • Steady blue Line

  • Formed by 2 or more small channels

  • Elevation

    • Normal

    • Aqueduct

      • Normal

      • Bridge

      • Overpass

      • Underpass

      • Skyway

      • Aqua-tunnel

  • River

  • Small River

  • Map display

    • Blue line twice the width of big canal.

    • Avg. width 30 M - (Mapper’s discretion)

  • Sub-categories:

    • Stream

    • Creek

    • Brook

    • Rivulet

    • Tributary

    • Rill

  • Elevation

    • Normal

    • Aqueduct

      • Bridge

      • Overpass

      • Underpass

      • Skyway

      • Aqua-tunnel

  • Big River

  • Map display

    • Blue line twice width of small river

  • Avg. width 30 M + (Mapper’s discretion)

  • Elevation

    • Normal

    • Aqueduct

    • Normal

    • Bridge

    • Overpass

    • Underpass

    • Skyway

    • Aqua-tunnel

  • Canal

  • Small Canal

  • Map display

    • Blue line twice the width of big channel

  • Avg. width 10 M – (Mapper’s discretion)

  • Elevation

    • Normal

    • Aqueduct

      • Bridge

      • Overpass

      • Underpass

      • Skyway

      • Aqua-tunnel

  • Big canal

  • Map display

    • Blue line twice width of small canal

  • Avg. width 10 M + (Mapper’s discretion)

  • Elevation

    • Normal

    • Aqueduct

      • Bridge

      • Overpass

      • Underpass

      • Skyway

      • Aqua-tunnel

  • Aqua-duct/Aqua-tunnel

  • Bridge

  • Overpass

  • Underpass

  • Skyway

  • Tunnel

  • Map display:

    • Blue Line with black border

  • Aqua-tunnel

    • Blue line with black border, in dashes, on earth surface

  • Polygon

  • Polygon making techniques

    • Small polygon

      • Standard

        • Mark points at the border

        • Press `Enter’ - left pane appears

        • Add details like `name’

        • Press `Save’ to finish

    • Big polygon (like Dam’s water reservoir)

      • Mark points to make a small polygon in the centre

      • Press `Enter’ - left pane appears

      • Add details like `name’

      • Now pull the small circles to outwards towards the edges

      • Each pull will create more small circles

      • Make finer adjustments

      • Press `Save’ to finish

    • Line feature polygon (like River)

      • Mark points to make a small polygon at the starting point

      • Press `Enter’ - left pane appears

      • Add details like `name’

      • Pull the small circle, in a Left-Right manner, one by one along the route of the line feature

      • Polygon will keep getting created along the route

      • Press `Save’ to finish

    • Editing Difficulties

      • Presently, there are editing difficulties with polygons like finding the name and place to right-click.

      • Suggest Text Font size of name should vary with size of polygon. A big polygon should have the Name in bigger Fonts.

      • A right-click on the polygon name should open up the Edit Menu.

    • Water Polygon Colour/Map display

      • Light blue transparent shade under which the features already mapped are visible and other features can be easily mapped.

    • Sub-categories

  • In Nature

    • Water (nameless water like floods)

    • Landmass (to create land out of water)

    • Island (to create island out of water)

    • Water-related Features

      • Water-related polygons of features with no names. Polygon will read `River’ and not `Water’. It can be given a name or subsequently given the name.

        • Ocean

        • Sea

        • High tide zone

        • Coral Reef

        • Coast/Coastal zone

        • Pelagic coast

        • Shore

        • Waterway

        • Snow (for snow covered peaks)

        • Glacier

        • Channel

        • River

        • River Delta

        • Gulf

        • Bay

        • Cove

        • Lagoon

        • Estuary

        • Rivulet

        • Brook

        • Tributary

        • Rill

        • Creek

        • Lake

        • Pond

    • Water-related Ecosystem Systems/Areas

      • Map colour display

        • Light green transparent shade under which the features already mapped are visible and other features can be easily mapped.

      • Watershed area

      • Wetland

      • Flood Area

      • Water-logged saline area

      • Flooded grassland

      • Landscape/seascape area

      • Marine Protected Area

      • Aquatic eco-system

        • Fresh water ecosystem

        • Marine ecosystem

      • Meadow

        • Water meadow

        • Flood meadow

  • Man Made

    • Dam

    • Barrage

    • Spillway

    • Dyke

    • Levee

    • Hydro Power

    • Hydro Electric

    • Floodgate

    • Aquarium

    • Fountain

    • Water hole

    • Sewage System

    • Desalination Plant

    • Water Theme Park

    • Water Treatment

    • Water Reservoir

      • Aqua-duct

      • Bridge

      • Overpass

      • Underpass

      • Skyway

      • Tunnel

  • Harbor

  • Port

    • Fishing

    • Dry

    • Warm Water

    • Cargo

  • Port Terminals

    • Oil

    • Cargo

    • Bulk

    • Container

  • Jetty

  • Lighthouse

  • Breakwater

  • Seawall

Part 2 - Definitions

  • In Nature

  • Water

    • Water is a chemical substance with the chemical formula H2O. Its molecule contains one oxygen and two hydrogen atoms connected by covalent bonds. Water is a liquid at ambient conditions, but it often co-exists on Earth with its solid state, ice, and gaseous state (water vapor or steam). Water also exists in a liquid crystal state near hydrophilic surfaces. Water covers 70.9% of the Earth's surface, and is vital for all known forms of life. On Earth, it is found mostly in oceans and other large water bodies, with 1.6% of water below ground in aquifers and 0.001% in the air as vapor, clouds (formed of solid and liquid water particles suspended in air), and precipitation. Oceans hold 97% of surface water, glaciers and polar ice caps 2.4%, and other land surface water such as rivers, lakes and ponds 0.6%. A very small amount of the Earth's water is contained within biological bodies and manufactured products

  • Glacier

  • A glacier is a large persistent body of ice. Originating on land, a glacier flows slowly due to stresses induced by its weight. Many glaciers store water during one season and release it later as melt-water, a water source that is especially important for plants, animals and human uses when other sources may be scant. Glacial ice is the largest reservoir of freshwater on Earth.  

    • Ice

      • Ice is water frozen into the solid state. It can appear transparent or opaque bluish-white color, depending on the presence of impurities or air inclusions. The addition of other materials such as soil may further alter the appearance. The most common phase transition to ice Ih occurs when liquid water is cooled below 0°C (273.15K, 32°F) at standard atmospheric pressure. It can also deposit from vapour with no intervening liquid phase, such as in the formation of frost. Ice appears in nature in forms of snowflakes, hail, icicles, glaciers, pack ice, and entire polar ice caps. It is an important component of the global climate, and plays an important role in the water cycle.

  • Channel

  • A channel is a physical confine of water formed due to run off water. A channel is also used in generic term like British channel. A major process of formation of channels is the melt-water from glaciers. Small channels formed from glacier melt-water combine to make bigger channels that result in the formation of river. Satellite imagery  clearly displays these channels below the glacier top on each face of the mountain that looks like a water tree.

    • River

    • A river is a natural watercourse, usually freshwater, flowing towards an ocean, a lake, a sea, or another river. In a few cases, a river simply flows into the ground or dries up completely before reaching another body of water. Small rivers may also be called by several other names, including stream, creek, brook, rivulet, tributary and rill; there is no general rule that defines what can be called a river, although in some countries or communities a stream may be defined by its size. A river is part of the hydrological cycle. Water within a river is generally collected from precipitation through surface runoff, groundwater recharge, springs, and the release of stored water in natural ice and snowpacks (e.g., from glaciers). 

    • Waterway

    • A waterway is any navigable body of water. Waterways can include rivers, lakes, seas, oceans, and canals used for carrying ships, boats, barges etc for shipping goods and conveying people.  In order for a waterway to be navigable, it must meet several criteria: the waterway must be wide enough to allow passage for the beam width of the vessels using it; the waterway must be free of barriers to navigation such as waterfalls and rapids, or have a way around them (such as canal locks and boat lifts); the current of the waterway must be mild enough to allow vessels to make headway.The waterway must be deep enough to allow the draft depth of the vessels using it.

    • Aquifer

    • An aquifer is a wet underground layer of water-bearing permeable rock or unconsolidated materials (gravel, sand, or silt) from which groundwater can be usefully extracted using a water well.  Related terms include aquitard, which is a bed of low permeability along an aquifer, and aquiclude (or aquifuge), which is a solid, impermeable area underlying or overlying an aquifer. If the impermeable area overlies the aquifer, pressure could cause it to become a confined aquifer.

    • Sea

    • A sea generally refers to a large body of salt water, but the term is used in other contexts as well. Most commonly, the term refers to a large expanse of saline water connected with an ocean, and is commonly used as a synonym for ocean. It is also used sometimes to describe a large saline lake that lacks a natural outlet, such as the Caspian Sea.

    • Ocean

    • An ocean is a major body of saline water, and a principal component of the hydrosphere. Approximately 71% of the Earth's surface is covered by ocean, a continuous body of water that is customarily divided into several principal oceans and smaller seas. More than half of this area is over 3,000 metres (9,800 ft) deep. Average oceanic salinity is around 35 parts per thousand (‰) (3.5%), and nearly all seawater has a salinity in the range of 30 to 38 ‰. Scientists estimate that 230,000 marine species are currently known, but the total could be up to 10 times that number.

    • Ocean Currents

    • An ocean current is a continuous, directed movement of ocean water generated by the forces acting upon this mean flow, such as breaking waves, wind, Coriolis force, temperature and salinity differences and tides caused by the gravitational pull of the Moon and the Sun. Depth contours, shoreline configurations and interaction with other currents influence a current's direction and strength.

    • Ocean currents can flow for great distances, and together they create the great flow of the global conveyor belt which plays a dominant part in determining the climate of many of the Earth’s regions. Perhaps the most striking example is the Gulf Stream, which makes northwest Europe much more temperate than any other region at the same latitude. Another example is the Hawaiian Islands, where the climate is cooler (sub-tropical) than the tropical latitudes in which they are located, due to the effect of the California Current.

    • High Tide Zone

      • Tides are the rise and fall of sea levels caused by the combined effects of the gravitational forces exerted by the Moon and the Sun and the rotation of the Earth. The area that falls under water during high tide is known as high tide zone.

      • Most places in the ocean usually experience two high tides and two low tides each day (semidiurnal tide), but some locations experience only one high and one low tide each day (diurnal tide). The times and amplitude of the tides at the coast are influenced by the alignment of the Sun and Moon, by the pattern of tides in the deep ocean and by the shape of the coastline and near-shore bathymetry

      • Tides vary on timescales ranging from hours to years due to numerous influences. To make accurate records, tide gauges at fixed stations measure the water level over time. Gauges ignore variations caused by waves with periods shorter than minutes. These data are compared to the reference (or datum) level usually called mean sea level.

      • While tides are usually the largest source of short-term sea-level fluctuations, sea levels are also subject to forces such as wind and barometric pressure changes, resulting in storm surges, especially in shallow seas and near coasts.

    • Lake

    • A lake is a body of relatively still fresh or salt water of considerable size, localized in a basin that is surrounded by land. Lakes are inland and not part of the ocean, and are larger and deeper than ponds. Lakes can be contrasted with rivers or streams, which are usually flowing. However most lakes are fed and drained by rivers and streams. Natural lakes are generally found in mountainous areas, rift zones, and areas with ongoing glaciation. Other lakes are found in low lying basins or along the courses of mature rivers. Many lakes are artificial and are constructed for industrial or agricultural use, for hydro-electric power generation or domestic water supply, or for aesthetic or recreational purposes.

    • Pond

    • A pond is a body of standing water, either natural or man-made, that is usually smaller than a lake. A wide variety of man-made bodies of water are classified as ponds, including water gardens and water features; all designed for aesthetic ornamentation as landscape or architectural features, while fish ponds are designed for commercial fish breeding, and solar ponds designed to store thermal energy.

    • Wetland

    • A wetland is an area of land whose soil is saturated with moisture either permanently or seasonally. Such areas may also be covered partially or completely by shallow pools of water. Wetlands include swamps, marshes, and bogs, among others. The water found in wetlands can be saltwater, freshwater, or brackish. The world's largest wetland is the Pantanal which straddles Brazil, Bolivia and Paraguay in South America.

    • Wetlands are considered the most biologically diverse of all ecosystems.  In many locations, such as the United Kingdom, Iraq, South Africa and the United States, wetlands are the subject of conservation efforts and Biodiversity Action Plans.

    • Wetlands also serve as natural wastewater purification systems—e.g., in Calcutta  and Arcata.

    • Bay

    • Bays are an area of water mostly surrounded by land. Bays generally have calmer waters than the surrounding sea, due to the surrounding land blocking some waves and often reducing winds. Bays also exist as an inlet in a lake or pond.  

    • Bays and gulfs were significant in the history of human settlement because they can provide a safe place for fishing. Later they were important in the development of sea trade as the safe anchorage they encouraged their selection as ports. Any bay may contain fish and other sea creatures or be adjacent to other bays, for example, James Bay is adjacent to Hudson Bay. Large bays, such as the Bay of Bengal and the Hudson Bay, have varied marine geology.

  • Gulf

    • A large bay may be called gulf, a sea, a sound, or a bight.

  • Cove

    • A cove is a circular or oval coastal inlet with a narrow entrance; some coves may be referred to as bays.

    • Lagoon

      • A lagoon is a a body of shallow sea water or brackish water separated from the sea by some form of a barrier.

    • Estuary

    • An estuary is a partly enclosed coastal body of water with one or more rivers or streams flowing into it, and with a free connection to the open sea. Estuaries form a transition zone between river environments and ocean environments and are subject to both marine influences, such as tides, waves, and the influx of saline water; and riverine influences, such as flows of fresh water and sediment. The inflow of both seawater and freshwater provide high levels of nutrients in both the water column and sediment, making estuaries among the most productive natural habitats in the world. 

    • Estuaries are typically classified by their geomorphological features or by water circulation patterns and can be referred to by many different names, such as bays, harbors, lagoons, inlets, or sounds, although sometimes these water bodies do not necessarily meet the above criteria of an estuary and may be fully saline.

    • Estuaries are amongst the most heavily populated areas throughout the world, with about 60% of the world’s population living along estuaries and the coast. As a result, estuaries are suffering degradation by many factors, including sedimentation from soil erosion from deforestation; overgrazing and other poor farming practices; overfishing; drainage and filling of wetlands.

    • Coast, Coastal zone

    • The coastline is where the land meets the sea or ocean. A precise line that can be called a coastline cannot be determined due to the dynamic nature of tides. The term "coastal zone" can be used instead, which is a spatial zone where interaction of the sea and land processes occurs. Both the terms coast and coastal are often used to describe a geographic location or region; for example, New Zealand's West Coast, or the East and West Coasts of the United States.

    • Pelagic Coast

      • A pelagic coast refers to a coast which fronts the open ocean, as opposed to a more sheltered coast in a gulf or bay.

    • Shore

      • A shore, on the other hand, can refer to parts of the land which adjoin any large body of water, including oceans (sea shore) and lakes (lake shore). Similarly, the somewhat related term "bank" refers to the land alongside or sloping down to a river (riverbank) or to a body of water smaller than a lake. "Bank" is also used in some parts of the world to refer to an artificial ridge of earth intended to retain the water of a river or pond. In other places this may be called a levee.

    • Flood

    • A flood is an overflow of an expanse of water that submerges land.The EU Floods directive defines a flood as a temporary covering by water of land not normally covered by water. In the sense of "flowing water", the word may also be applied to the inflow of the tide. Flooding may result from the volume of water within a body of water, such as a river or lake, which overflows or breaks levees, with the result that some of the water escapes its usual boundaries.

    • While the size of a lake or other body of water will vary with seasonal changes in precipitation and snow melt, it is not a significant flood unless such escapes of water endanger land areas used by man like a village, city or other inhabited area. Floods can also occur in rivers, when flow exceeds the capacity of the river channel, particularly at bends or meanders. Floods often cause damage to homes and businesses if they are placed in natural flood plains of rivers. While flood damage can be virtually eliminated by moving away from rivers and other bodies of water, but since ages, people have lived and worked by the water to seek sustenance and capitalize on the gains of cheap and easy travel and commerce by being near water. That humans continue to inhabit areas threatened by flood damage is evidence that the perceived value of living near the water exceeds the cost of repeated periodic flooding.

    • Aquatic Ecosystem

    • An aquatic ecosystem is an ecosystem located in a body of water. Communities of organisms that are dependent on each other and on their environment live in aquatic ecosystems. The two main types of aquatic ecosystems are marine ecosystems and freshwater ecosystems.

    • Marine Ecosystem

    • Marine ecosystems cover approximately 71% of the Earth's surface and contain approximately 97% of the planet's water. They generate 32% of the world's net primary production. They are distinguished from freshwater ecosystems by the presence of dissolved compounds, especially salts, in the water. Approximately 85% of the dissolved materials in seawater are sodium and chlorine. Seawater has an average salinity of 35 parts per thousand (ppt) of water. Actual salinity varies among different marine ecosystems.

    • Marine ecosystems can be divided into the following zones:

      • Oceanic (the open part of the ocean where animals such as whales, sharks, and tuna live); profundal (bottom or deep water)

      • Benthic (bottom substrates)

      • Intertidal (the area between high and low tides)

      • Estuaries

      • Salt marshes

      • Coral reefs

      • Hydrothermal vents (where chemosynthetic sulfur bacteria form the food base).

    • Classes of organisms found in marine ecosystems include brown algae, dinoflagellates, corals, cephalopods, echinoderms, and sharks. Fish caught in marine ecosystems are the biggest source of commercial foods obtained from wild populations.

    • Environmental problems concerning marine ecosystems include unsustainable exploitation of marine resources (for example overfishing of certain species), marine pollution, climate change, and building on coastal areas.

    • Fresh Water Ecosystem

    • Freshwater ecosystems cover 0.80% of the Earth's surface and inhabit 0.009% of its total water. They generate nearly 3% of its net primary production. Freshwater ecosystems contain 41% of the world's known fish species.

    • There are three basic types of freshwater ecosystems:

      • Lentic: slow-moving water, including pools, ponds, and lakes.

      • Lotic: rapidly-moving water, for example streams and rivers.

      • Wetlands: areas where the soil is saturated or inundated for at least part of the time.

    • Lake ecosystems can be divided into zones:

      • Pelagic (open offshore waters)

      • Profundal

      • Littoral (nearshore shallow waters)

      • Riparian (the area of land bordering a body of water).

      • Two important subclasses of lakes are ponds, which typically are small lakes that intergrade with wetlands, and water reservoirs. Many lakes, or bays within them, gradually become enriched by nutrients and fill in with organic sediments, a process called eutrophication. Eutrophication is accelerated by human activity within the water catchment area of the lake.

    • Coral Reef

    • Coral reefs are underwater structures made from calcium carbonate secreted by corals. Corals are colonies of tiny living animals found in marine waters that contain few nutrients. Most coral reefs are built from stony corals, which in turn consist of polyps that cluster in groups. These polyps secrete hard carbonate exoskeletons which support and protect their bodies. Reefs grow best in warm, shallow, clear, sunny and agitated waters.

    • Often called “rainforests of the sea”, coral reefs form some of the most diverse ecosystems on Earth. They occupy less than one tenth of one percent of the world ocean surface, about half the area of France, yet they provide a home for twenty-five percent of all marine species, including fish, molluscs, worms, crustaceans, echinoderms, sponges, tunicates and other cnidarians. Paradoxically, coral reefs flourish even though they are surrounded by ocean waters that provide few nutrients. They are most commonly found at shallow depths in tropical waters, but deep water and cold water corals also exist on smaller scales in other areas.

    • Coral reefs deliver ecosystem services to tourism, fisheries and shoreline protection. The annual global economic value of coral reefs has been estimated at $US375 billion. However, coral reefs are fragile ecosystems, partly because they are very sensitive to water temperature. They are under threat from climate change, ocean acidification, blast fishing, cyanide fishing for aquarium fish, overuse of reef resources, and harmful land-use practices, including urban and agricultural runoff and water pollution, which can harm reefs by encouraging excess algae growth.

    • Protected Landscape/seascape  (IUCN Cat V)

    • Landscapes and Seascapes that fall into this category should represent an integral balance between people and nature, and can sustain activities such as traditional agricultural and forestry systems on conditions that ensure the continued protection or restoration of the area.

    • Category V is one of the more flexible classifications of protected areas. As a result, protected Landscapes and Seascapes may be able to accommodate contemporary developments such as ecotourism at the same time as maintaining the historical management practices that may procure the sustainability of agrobiodiversity and aquatic biodiversity.

    • Marine Protected area MPA

    • Marine protected areas, like any protected area, are regions in which human activity has been placed under some restrictions in the interest of conserving the natural environment, it's surrounding waters and the occupant ecosystems, and any cultural or historical resources that may require preservation or management. Marine Protected Areas' boundaries will include some area of ocean, even if it is only a small fraction of the total area of the territory. Natural or historic marine resources are protected by local, state, territorial, native, regional, or national authorities and may differ substantially from nation to nation. This variation includes different limitations on development, fishing practices, fishing seasons and catch limits, moorings, bans on removing or disrupting marine life of any kind. In some situations (such as with the Phoenix_Islands_Protected_Area), MPA's also provide revenue for countries, often of equal size as the income that they would have if they were to grant companies permissions to fish.

    • As of 2010, the world hosted more than 6,800 MPAs, encompassing 1.17% of the world's oceans. 

    • Marine Protected Areas are included on the World Database on Protected Areas (WDPA), which, since 2010 is viewable via Protected Planet, an online interactive search engine hosted by the United Nations Evironment Programme's World Conservation Monitoring Center (UNEP-WCMC).

    • Flooded grasslands

    • Grasslands that are flooded seasonally or year-round, like the Everglades of Florida, the Pantanal of Brazil, Bolivia and Paraguay or the Esteros del Ibera in Argentina.They are classified with flooded savannas as the flooded grasslands and savannas biome and occur mostly in the tropics and subtropics.

    • Water-meadow

    • A water-meadow (also water meadow or watermeadow) is an area of grassland subject to controlled irrigation to increase agricultural productivity. Water-meadows were mainly used in Europe from the 16th to the early 20th centuries. Working water-meadows have now largely disappeared, but the field patterns and water channels of derelict water-meadows remain common in areas where they were used, such as parts of Italy, Switzerland and England. Derelict water-meadows are often of importance as wetland wildlife habitats.

    • Water-meadows should not be confused with flood-meadows, which are naturally covered in shallow water by seasonal flooding from a river. "Water-meadow" is sometimes used more loosely to mean any level grassland beside a river.

    • Flood-meadow

    • A flood-meadow (or floodmeadow) is an area of grassland or pasture beside a river, subject to seasonal flooding. Flood-meadows are distinct from water-meadows in that the latter are artificially created and maintained, with flooding controlled on a seasonal and even daily basis.

  • Man Made

    • Dam

    • A dam is a barrier that impounds water or underground streams. Dams generally serve the primary purpose of retaining water, while other structures such as floodgates or levees (also known as dikes) are used to manage or prevent water flow into specific land regions. Hydropower and hydroelectricity are often used in conjunction with dams to generate electricity. A dam can also be used to collect water or for storage of water which can be evenly distributed between locations.

    • Barrage

    • A barrage is a type of dam which consists of a line of large gates that can be opened or closed to control the amount of water passing the dam. The gates are set between flanking piers which are responsible for supporting the water load. They are often used to control and stabilize water flow of rivers for irrigation systems.

    • According to the World Commission on Dams, a key difference between a barrage and a dam is that a dam is built for storing water in a reservoir, which raises the level of water significantly. A barrage is built for diverting water, and is generally built on flat terrain across wide meandering rivers, raising the water level only a few feet.

    • Barrages that are commonly used to dam a lagoon or estuary as a method to capture tidal power from tidal inflows are known as tidal barrages.

    • Canal

    • Canals are man-made channels for water. Those connected to existing lakes, rivers, or oceans. Included are inter-basin canals, such as the Suez Canal, Erie Canal, and the Panama Canal.

    • Aqueducts

    • Aqueducts are man-made Bridges, Overpass, Underpasses, Tunnel or similar structures that enable water channels, rivers or canals to cross over/under another feature that is on surface.  An aqueduct is a water supply or navigable channel (conduit) constructed to convey water. In modern engineering, the term is used for any system of pipes, ditches, canals, tunnels, and other structures used for this purpose. In a more restricted use, aqueduct (occasionally water bridge) applies to any bridge or viaduct that transports water—instead of a path, road or railway—across a gap. Large navigable aqueducts are used as transport links for boats or ships. Aqueducts must span a crossing at the same level as the watercourses on each side.  

    • Floodgate

    • Floodgates are adjustable gates used to control water flow in flood barriers, reservoir, river, stream, or levee systems. They may be designed to set spillway crest heights in dams, to adjust flow rates in sluices and canals, or they may be designed to stop water flow entirely as part of a levee or storm surge system. Since most of these devices operate by controlling the water surface elevation being stored or routed, they are also known as crest gates. In the case of flood bypass systems, floodgates sometimes are also used to lower the water levels in a main river or canal channels by allowing more water to flow into a flood bypass or detention basin when the main river or canal is approaching a flood stage.

    • Hydropower

    • Hydropower, hydraulic power or water power is power that is derived from the force or energy of moving water, which may be harnessed for useful purposes. Prior to the development of electric power, hydropower was used for irrigation, and operation of various machines, such as watermills, textile machines, sawmills, dock cranes, and domestic lifts.

    • Hydro-electric power

    • Hydroelectricity is the term referring to electricity generated by hydropower; the production of electrical power through the use of the gravitational force of falling or flowing water. It is the most widely used form of renewable energy. Once a hydroelectric complex is constructed, the project produces no direct waste, and has a considerably lower output level of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide (CO2) than fossil fuel powered energy plants. 

  • Weir

    •  A weir is a small overflow dam used to alter the flow characteristics of a river or stream. In most cases weirs take the form of a barrier across the river that causes water to pool behind the structure (not unlike a dam), but allows water to flow over the top. Weirs are commonly used to alter the flow regime of the river, prevent flooding, measure discharge and to help render a river navigable.

    • Weirs allow hydrologists and engineers a simple method of measuring the volumetric flow rate in small to medium-sized streams, or in industrial discharge locations. Since the geometry of the top of the weir is known, and all water flows over the weir, the depth of water behind the weir can be converted to a rate of flow. The calculation relies on the fact that fluid will pass through the critical depth of the flow regime in the vicinity of the crest of the weir. If water is not carried away from the weir, it can make flow measurement complicated or even impossible.

  • Fishing Weir

    • A fishing weir, or fish weir, is an obstruction placed in tidal waters or wholly or partially across a river, which is designed to hinder the passage of fish. Traditionally they were built from wood or stones. They can be used to trap fish. For example, salmon and other fish can be trapped when they attempt to swim upstream, or eels can be trapped when they attempt to migrate downstream.

    • Alternatively, fish weirs can be used to redirect fish elsewhere, such as to a fish ladder.

  • Water Mill

    • A watermill is a structure that uses a water wheel or turbine to drive a mechanical process such as flour, lumber or textile production, or metal shaping (rolling, grinding or wire drawing).

  • Water Wheel

    • A water wheel is a machine for converting the energy of free-flowing or falling water into useful forms of power. A water wheel consists of a large wooden or metal wheel, with a number of blades or buckets arranged on the outside rim forming the driving surface. Most commonly, the wheel is mounted vertically on a horizontal axle, but the tub or Norse wheel is mounted horizontally on a vertical shaft. Vertical wheels can transmit power either through the axle or via a ring gear and typically drive belts or gears; horizontal wheels usually directly drive their load.

    • Water wheels were still in commercial use well into the 20th century, but they are no longer in common use. Prior uses of water wheels include milling flour in gristmills and grinding wood into pulp for paper making, but other uses include foundry work and machining, and pounding linen for use in the manufacture of paper.

    • Some water wheels are fed by water from a mill pond, which is formed when a flowing stream is dammed. A channel for the water flowing to or from a water wheel is called a mill race (also spelled millrace) or simply a "race", and is customarily divided into sections. The race bringing water from the mill pond to the water wheel is a headrace; the one carrying water after it has left the wheel is commonly referred to as a tailrace.

    • The main difficulty of water wheels is their dependence on flowing water, which limits where they can be located. Modern hydroelectric dams can be viewed as the descendants of the water wheel as they too take advantage of the movement of water downhill.

  • Breakwater

    • Breakwaters are structures constructed on coasts as part of coastal defence or to protect an anchorage from the effects of weather and longshore drift.

    • Harbor

    • A harbor or harbour (see spelling differences), or haven, is a place where ships, boats, and barges can seek shelter from stormy weather, or else are stored for future use. Harbors can be natural or artificial. An artificial harbor has deliberately-constructed breakwaters, sea walls, or jettys, or otherwise, they could have been constructed by dredging, and these require maintenance by further periodic dredging. An example of the former kind is at Long Beach Harbor, California, and an example of the latter kind is San Diego Harbor, California, which was, under natural conditions, too shallow for modern merchant ships and warships. In contrast, a natural harbor is surrounded on several sides by prominences of land. An example of this kind of harbor is San Francisco Bay, California.

    • Port

    • A port is a location on a coast or shore containing one or more harbors where ships can dock and transfer people or cargo to or from land. Port locations are selected to optimize access to land and navigable water, for commercial demand, and for shelter from wind and waves. Ports with deeper water are rarer, but can handle larger, more economical ships. Since ports throughout history handled every kind of traffic, support and storage facilities vary widely, may extend for miles, and dominate the local economy. Some ports have an important military role.

    • Sub-categories

    • Fishing port

    • Dry port

    • Warm water port

    • Cargo port

    • Jetty

    • A jetty is any of a variety of structures used in river, dock, and maritime works that are generally carried out in pairs from river banks, or in continuation of river channels at their outlets into deep water; or out into docks, and outside their entrances; or for forming basins along the sea-coast for ports in tideless seas. The forms and construction of these jetties are as varied as their uses (directing currents or accommodating vessels), for they are formed sometimes of high open timber-work, sometimes of low solid projections, and occasionally only differ from breakwaters in their object. The term derived from the French word jetée, "thrown", and signifies something thrown out. Jetties at the coast that have been raised and extended, help prevent long shore drift, so therefore slowing down beach erosion.

    • Vessel

    • A watercraft is a vessel or craft designed to move across or through water. The name is derived from the term "craft" which was used to describe all types of water going vessels. The term craft has since been expanded to include all types of vessels which travel on water (watercraft), in air (aircraft) and in space (spacecraft).

    • Most watercraft would be described as either a ship or a boat. However, there are a number of craft which many people would consider neither a ship nor a boat, such as: canoes, kayaks, rafts, barges, catamarans, hydrofoils, windsurfers, surfboards (when used as a paddle board), jet skis, underwater robots, seaplanes, and torpedoes.

    • Although ships are typically larger than boats, the distinction between those two categories is not one of size per se.

    • Ships typically are large ocean-going vessels. Boats are smaller and travel most often on inland or coastal waters.

    • Ship

    • A ship  is a large vessel that floats on water. Ships are generally distinguished from boats based on size and cargo or passenger capacity. Ships may be found on lakes, seas, and rivers and they allow for a variety of activities, such as the transport of people or goods, fishing, entertainment, public safety, and warfare. Historically, a ship referred to a vessel with sails rigged in a specific manner.

    • Boat

    • A boat is a watercraft of modest size designed to float or plane, to provide passage across water. Usually this water will be inland (lakes) or in protected coastal areas. However, boats such as the whaleboat were designed to be operated from a ship in an offshore environment. In naval terms, a boat is a vessel small enough to be carried aboard another vessel (a ship). Another less restrictive definition is a vessel that can be lifted out of the water. 

    • Barge

    • A barge is a flat-bottomed boat, built mainly for river and canal transport of heavy goods. Some barges are not self-propelled and need to be towed by tugboats or pushed by towboats. Canal barges, towed by draft animals on an adjacent towpath, contended with the railway in the early industrial revolution, but were outcompeted in the carriage of high-value items due to the higher speed, falling costs, and route flexibility of rail.

    • Trade Route

    • A trade route is a logistical network identified as a series of pathways and stoppages used for the commercial transport of cargo. Allowing goods to reach distant markets, a single trade route contains long distance arteries which may further be connected to several smaller networks of commercial and non commercial transportation.

    • Historically, the period from 1250 BCE–153 CE saw the Western Asian, Mediterranean, Chinese and Indian societies develop major transportation networks for trade. Europe's early trading routes included the Amber Road, which served as a dependable network for long distance trade. Maritime trade along the Spice route became prominent during the Middle Ages; nations resorted to military means for control of this influential route. During the Middle Ages organizations such as the Hanseatic League, aimed at protecting interests of the merchants and trade, also became increasingly prominent.

    • Dyke

    • A levee, levée, dike (or dyke), embankment, floodbank or stopbank is a natural or artificial slope or wall to regulate water levels. It is usually earthen and often parallel to the course of a river or the coast.

    • Seawall

    • A seawall (also written as sea wall) is a form of coastal defence constructed where the sea impacts directly upon the landforms of the coast. Its prime purpose is to modify the potentially destructive action of tides and waves such that areas of human habitation, conservation, leisure and economic activities, are protected in the long term from the effects of erosion and / or flooding.

    • Given the destructive natural forces that seawalls are constantly subjected to, maintenance (and eventually replacement) is an ongoing requirement if they are to provide effective long term defence. The many types of seawall in use today reflects both the varying physical forces they have to withstand, and location-specific aspects (e.g. local climate, coastal position, wave regime and value of landform being protected).

    • Although once considered a wide-ranging 'hard' coastal management solution, their effect on adjacent areas of the coast, (particularly in terms of sediment movement) and their high cost has led to the increasing use of other 'softer' coastal management options such as beach replenishment.





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