Remote Sensing and GIS Technologies as Tools to Support Sustainable Management of Areas Devastated by Landslides

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IKONOS panchromatic images from a single year were used to characterise the effects of an extreme rainstorm event on six mountain catchment areas in Venezuela. Image registrations were accomplished using topographic base maps at 1 : 5000 scale giving a mapping accuracy between 37 and 40 m. It was used an 8-bit channel for correction, rectification, filteration and tone enhancements.

Landsliding was discerned in the affected watersheds using morphometric criteria, including the shape of the slope failure and its position, exposure bedrock in the scar and deposition of debris down-slope. This study is restricted to the impact analysis of the distribution of landslide erosion scars and the depositional processes on the valley floor. Remote sensing data were combined into a geographic information system (GIS) with planimetric data, contour lines, hydrology and vegetation types to evaluate the distribution of the scars and their effects on the highly populated areas located on the alluvial fans. Hillslope mass wasting induced mass movements, logging and increased the mud and silt in floodwaters affecting settlement down-slope.