Diagnostic of ribeirão Mestre d’Armas sub-basin using two methods of rapid environmental assessment, Federal District, Central Brazil
AbstractRapid environmental assessments have been used to describe the quality and semi-quantitative attributes of the ecosystems along an environmental gradient using visual observations and few measurements. The aim of this study was to identify and measure anthropogenic impacts on ribeirão Mestre d’Armas sub-basin, Federal District, Central Brazil, and to propose its environmental zoning. This study was performed using two methods based on rapid environmental assessment: a rapid river assessment protocol, to evaluate in an integrated form the features of a lotic system section according to the conservation or degradation condition of the fluvial environment; and the Leopold matrix, to identify and evaluate the anthropogenic impacts. The environmental zoning of this sub-basin detected three areas: preserved, transition and urban areas. The environmental assessment revealed, the preserved area had lotic stretches with natural features under low magnitude of impacts, except on burned areas. In the transition area, there was a predominance of lotic stretches with altered features, due to agriculture and livestock activities of intermediate level of impacts. Finally, the urban area had altered and impacted lotic stretches of higher magnitude due to anthropogenic impacts. Thus, this study revealed large differences among the areas detected by environmental zoning, according to the methods used. These methods were considered complementary in relation to environmental diagnostic of the ribeirão Mestre d’Armas sub-basin.
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