Contribution of Remote Sensing and GIS to the Inventory and Analysis of Factors influencing on the Development of Karst Features in the Middle Atlas, Morocco


  •   Barbara Theilen-Willige

  •   Iliass Naouadir


The development of karst features is a complex and interactive process of many factors with varying influence over time. The following main factors seem to have influenced the occurrence and development of karst features in the Middle Atlas in Morocco: Precipitations after extreme weather events depending on the precipitation pattern modified by orographic effects and exposition of the terrain towards the main rain-bearing clouds are determining surface water input and infiltration as well as the outline of morphologic watersheds and drainage basins. The lithologic conditions such as the outcrops of lower Jurassic limestones, the geomorphologic disposition, the volcanic activity within limestones combined with hydrothermal dissolution processes, and the structural conditions influencing water permeability in fault and fracture zones and, thus, the dissolution intensity, are further factors. Ongoing aseismic vertical and horizontal neotectonic movements due to plate tectonic activities and shallow earthquake activities are causing the development and reactivation of fault zones and as consequence modifying groundwater flow conditions in the karst hydrologic systems. Seismic activity can lead as well to the development of sinkholes and the collapse of caves. The development of a systematic Karst-Geo Information System (GIS) is recommended that should be updated regularly.

Keywords: Karst, Middle Atlas, Remote Sensing, GIS.


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How to Cite
Theilen-Willige, B., & Naouadir, I. (2022). Contribution of Remote Sensing and GIS to the Inventory and Analysis of Factors influencing on the Development of Karst Features in the Middle Atlas, Morocco. European Journal of Environment and Earth Sciences, 3(6), 1–17.