An insight to the fluvial characteristics of the Mediterranean and Black Sea watersheds

  • S.E. Poulos
Part of the Environmental Earth Sciences book series (EESCI)


The drainage basin of the Mediterranean Sea, accounting for some 4,184 10³ km² (including the R. Nile), is larger than that of the Black Sea (2,320 10³ km²). Estimates of the annual water load for the Mediterranean and Black Sea rivers are 550 km³ and 395 km³, respectively. According to these figures, the corresponding values of annual water yield 130 m³/km² (Med) and 170 m³/km² (Black) show that Black Sea Rivers have a larger water capacity. In the case of the Black Sea, the large river systems (>10,000 km²) drain 87% of its catchment supplying the 60% of its freshwater load. In contrast, the medium and small (<10,000 km²) Mediterranean Sea rivers, although they drain 16% of its watershed, supply almost 70% of its water load. The impact of river damming has already reduced the freshwater fluxes by 40% for the Mediterranean and <10% for the Black Sea.


Drainage Basin Water Yield Freshwater Discharge Freshwater Flux Water Load 
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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • S.E. Poulos
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Geography & Climatology, Faculty of Geology & GeoenvironmentNational & Kapodistrian University of AthensAttikiGreece

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