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Course, academic year 2023/2024
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Contemporary Issues in Physical Geography and Geoecology - MZ330E007
Title: Contemporary Issues in Physical Geography and Geoecology
Czech title: Aktuální témata ve fyzické geografii a geoekologii
Guaranteed by: Department of Physical Geography and Geoecology (31-330)
Faculty: Faculty of Science
Actual: from 2023
Semester: winter
E-Credits: 3
Examination process: winter s.:
Hours per week, examination: winter s.:1/1, C [HT]
Capacity: unlimited
Min. number of students: unlimited
4EU+: no
Virtual mobility / capacity: no
State of the course: taught
Language: English
Is provided by: MZ330E011
Note: enabled for web enrollment
Guarantor: RNDr. Dagmar Chalupová, Ph.D.
Teacher(s): prof. RNDr. Radan Huth, DrSc.
RNDr. Dagmar Chalupová, Ph.D.
RNDr. Tomáš Chuman, Ph.D.
doc. RNDr. Michal Jeníček, Ph.D.
doc. Mgr. Jan Kropáček, Ph.D.
prof. RNDr. Jakub Langhammer, Ph.D.
Mgr. Martin Margold, Ph.D.
RNDr. Milada Matoušková, Ph.D.
RNDr. Dušan Romportl, Ph.D.
prof. RNDr. Vít Vilímek, CSc.
Annotation -
The course is focused on contemporary trends in physical geography and geoecology in the Czech Republic and
in the world. Each lecture is focused on a special topic.

Last update: Chalupová Dagmar, RNDr., Ph.D. (24.10.2019)
Literature -

Jones, A., Montanarella, L. and Jones, R., (2005): Soil atlas of Europe. European Soil Bureau Network. European Commission, Luxembourg, 128 p.
Kozák, J. (2010): Soil atlas of the Czech Republic. Czech University of Life Sciences, Prague, 150 p.
Hladný, J., Němec, J (eds.) (2006): Water in Czech Republic, Consult, Prague, 256 p. ISBN: 80-903482-2-X                                                                                                                                                                             

Romportl, D., Chuman, T., Lipský, Z. (2013): Typologie krajiny Česka, Geografie, 1, 118, pp. 16-39. Romportl, D., Chuman, T. (2012): Present approaches to landscape typology, Journal of Landscape Ecology,5, 3, 24-35.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              

Chuman, T., Romportl. D. (2010): Multivariate classification analysis of cultural landscapes: An example from the Czech Republic, Landscape and Urban Planning, doi:10.1016/j.landurbplan.2010.08.003                                          

Lipský, Z., Romportl, D. (2007):Typůologie krajiny v Česku a zahrnaičí: stav, problematiky, metody a teoretická východiska, 112, 1, 62-84.                                                                                                                          

DOSTÁL, T., JANEČEK, M., KLIMENT, Z., KRÁSA, J., LANGHAMMER, J., VÁŠKA, J., VRÁNA, K., 2006. Czech Republic. In: Soil Erosion in Europe (J. Boardmann,  J. Poesen  eds.), J.Wiley & sons, New York, pp. 107-116. ISBN 0-470-85910.
LANGHAMMER, J., MATOUŠKOVÁ, M., KLIMENT, Z., 2013. Assessment of spatial and temporal changes of ecological status of streams in Czechia: a geographical approach. Geografie, 118, 4, 309-333.
KLIMENT, Z., KADLEC, J., LANGHAMMER, J., 2008. Evaluation of suspended load changes using AnnAGNPS and SWAT semi-empirical models. Catena, 73, 3, 286-299. 
KLIMENT, Z., 2003. Transport of suspended sediments in various regions of the Czech Republic. Acta Universitatis Carolinae - Geographica, 38, 1, 157-166.                                                                                                        

Tolasz, R. et al., 2007: Climate atlas of Czechia. Czech Hydrometeorological Institute, Prague.


and other literature focused on contemporary isues in physical geography: articles (WOS, Scopus)

Last update: Chalupová Dagmar, RNDr., Ph.D. (24.10.2019)
Requirements to the exam -
  • Written seminar paper with references to published research: 15 pages long , plus a PowerPoint presentation at the final seminar (10 min; 8-10 slides);
  • Topics must be chosen by the 3rd lecture after a discussion with the respective lecturer;
  • After the students choose a seminar-paper topic, they will present a 2-page long draft of the seminar paper, including at least 3 references to relevant literature to the respective lecturer (due by the 7th lecture);
  • Written seminar paper must be sent to the respective lecturer at least 2 weeks before the final seminar!
  • 75% presence at the lectures.
Last update: Chalupová Dagmar, RNDr., Ph.D. (24.10.2019)
Syllabus -

Landscape fragmentation in Europe (Romportl)            

Landscape fragmentation represents one of the biggest threats for biodiversity and one of the most important issues for current nature and landscape protection. The lecture will provide the basic information on the development of the landscape fragmentation in Europe, its causes and impacts, as well as methods of its evaluation and quantification. Available mitigation measures and other tools how to protect landscape against its negative impacts will be discussed as well.


Geomorphological hazards in high mountain areas (Vilímek)    

An emerging field of inter- and trans-disciplinary high-mountain research has started to develop tools for anticipating future environments with natural hazards and risks. Such information clearly documents the fact that many mountain ranges have already lost large parts of their glaciers and are likely to become largely de-glaciated within decades. A rapidly growing literature documents the processes involved and the phenomena on the physical as well as on the socio-economic and cultural side. It provides an important information on how to assess new hazards and how to deal with them.     

Climate change impact on the mountain environment  in Peruvian Andes and Tien Shan Mountains in Kyrgyzstan  (Janský)              

Global warming causes an intensive melting and retreat of glaciers in the majority of high mountains all over the world. This process is also evident in the mountain regions of  Peruvian Andes and central Tien Shan. Melting glacier water affects changes in the hydrological regime of water streams and causes overfilling of high mountain lake basins. The dams of many lakes are very unstable and often burst open. To determine the degree of this risk, it is necessary to analyse the genesis of the lakes, to characterize the morphology of the lake basins and to know the particularities of their hydrological regime.


Restoration of water ecosystems (Matoušková)            

The lecture is designed to familiarize students with functions and conditions of natural water ecosystems, their heterogeneity and dynamic, and with negative aspects of human modification of water ecosystems and ecohydrological assessment methods and restoration principles. Attention is also paid to the presentation of model river restoration projects.


Hydrological impact of climate change: Will we have enough water in the future? (Jeníček)

In the future, it is expected that more precipitation that falls now as snow will fall as rain. Consequently, snow storage will decrease, which might cause reductions in spring and summer streamflow. This is especially valid for regions with seasonal distribution of precipitation. Additionally, the increase in air temperature will increase evapotranspiration and thus the deficit volumes will increase as well. The lecture will introduce the major impacts of ongoing and future climate changes on the individual components of the water cycle. Different consequences in different regions of the world will be discussed.


Recent and future climate change: What, where, how much? (Huth)

The recent climate change observed in temperature, precipitation, and other climate elements is reviewed. The possible future development of climate due to the anthropogenic modification of atmospheric composition is discussed. Selected impacts of climate change on human activities, ecosystems, etc., are presented.


Applications of unmanned aerial systems in physical geography (Langhammer)          

The unmanned aerial systems (UAS, UAVs, drones) represent a rapidly evolving technology for rapid mapping and close-range remote sensing with manifold applications in geosciences. The lecture brings an overview of the technology, covering both aerial platforms and sensors, and demonstrates the potential of its applications in physical geography on selected examples from the recent research projects in hydrology, fluvial geomorphology, 3-D terrain reconstructions or multispectral analysis of forest disturbance.


Soil degradation in the Czech Republic (Chuman)        

Soil is an important natural resource and is now under pressure from degradation processes affecting the vital goods and services the soil provides, such as food production, water retention, biodegradation, biodiversity, and nutrient cycling. These degradation processes, for example, soil sealing, soil erosion, and soil compaction, will be presented.


Ice sheets in the warming world (Margold)

Climate displays a clear warming trend in the recent decades, most likely as a result of greenhouse-gas emissions. Polar ice sheets respond by surface melt and by changes in the dynamic discharge, which both contribute to the rising global sea level. This lecture will focus on the ice sheet regions and processes at play that are of the highest concern with regard to the rising sea level.


The effects of climate change on vegetation shifts (Treml)      

The lecture provides an overview of responses of vegetation to climate change, including ecotones, species distributions, productivity and disturbances. Changes in the leading and trailing edges of vegetation altitudinal belts will be particularly emphasized.


Water and sediment pollution (Chalupová)     

The lecture provides a brief description about sources of pollution, main pollutants, contamination risks, monitoring techniques and parameters. Water and sediment contamination in the Czech Republic will be presented with the focus on the most problematic localities (old anthropogenic loads, the Elbe River).


Final seminar - presentations    

Last update: Chalupová Dagmar, RNDr., Ph.D. (17.12.2019)
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