CHAPTER 13 Arid Environments

CHAPTER 13 Arid Environments - 2009 Allan Ludman and...

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1 CHAPTER 13 PROCESSES AND LANDFORMS IN ARID ENVIRONMENTS PURPOSE • To understand how erosion and deposition in arid regions differ from those in humid regions. • To recognize how those differences make arid landscapes different from those of humid environments. • To become familiar with landforms and landscapes of arid regions. MATERIALS NEEDED Colored pencils 13.1 INTRODUCTION Arid regions are defined as those that receive less than 25 cm (10 inches) of rain per year –very little water for stream and groundwater erosion or for chemical and physical weathering. Weathering, mass wasting, wind and stream erosion are still the major shapes of arid landscapes but because they are applied in very different proportions than in humid regions, the results are strikingly different from humid area landscapes (Figure 13.1). Figure 13.1 Arid landforms from the southwestern United States a. Erosional remnants, Monument Valley b. Hoodoo panorama, Bryce National Park c. Delicate Arch, Arches National Park Movies and television portray arid regions with camels resting at oases amid mountainous sand dunes. Some like parts of the Sahara and Mojave deserts, do look like that (minus camels in the Mojave), but some have more rock than sand, others lie next to shorelines where there is no shortage of water, and the North and South Poles are among Earth’s most arid regions (Figure 13.2). © 2009 Allan Ludman and Stephen Marshak W.W. Norton & Company
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