Land Reclamation

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Land Reclamation: 

Land Reclamation An important way to increase our land supply. Definition: To recover land that has lost its productivity and to make it usable again. Land reclamation is also (commonly) used to refer to creating dry land from an area covered by water (sea, lake,swamp)

Land Reclamation: 

Land Reclamation Why do we need to reclaim land? Land may be damaged due to natural hazards eg. Fires Human activities can also damage the land eg. Poor farming methods. Cases of waterlogged land eg. Swamps and marshes Problem of land scarcity, where it may be difficult to find new land to restore or improve.

Land Reclamation: 

Land Reclamation What are the benefits? Increases the availability of arable land. Expanding the carrying capacity of land. A feasible solution to the problem of overcrowding. It allows for further growth of a country’s industries. Reclaimed land can be used for a multitude of purposes.

Types of land that can be reclaimed – Derelict Land: 

Types of land that can be reclaimed – Derelict Land Derelict land: Land that is damaged or abandoned and cannot be put to any use until the damage is repaired.

Types of land that can be reclaimed – Derelict Land: 

Types of land that can be reclaimed – Derelict Land What causes derelict land? More commonly a result of human activities, although Sometimes it can be caused by natural disasters. Poor farming methods and mining are two human activities that can damage the land.

Types of land that can be reclaimed – Derelict Land: 

Types of land that can be reclaimed – Derelict Land Farming: Fertility of arable land can be lost through poor farming. Over-intensive use of land does not allow it to replenish its lost nutrients in time. Fertility of land decreases over time. Land would then not be suitable for cultivation.

Types of land that can be reclaimed – Derelict Land: 

Types of land that can be reclaimed – Derelict Land Mining: Vegetation and rocks are usually removed at the mining site to obtain the mineral ores found underground. Large holes dug into the ground become filled with rainwater and form dangerous deep mining pools. Water is polluted. Mining wastes left behind may also contain toxic substances that contaminate the soil and water in the mining pools. Land becomes useless and is an eyesore.

Types of land that can be reclaimed – Derelict Land: 

Types of land that can be reclaimed – Derelict Land How do we restore derelict land? Using fertilisers and irrigation – for land spoilt by farming practices. Restoring derelict land needs a little more work. Waste heaps need to be levelled and mining pools filled. Chemicals can be used to treat contaminated soils. New vegetation can be planted to provide cover for the soil to prevent topsoil erosion during the recovery period.

Types of land that can be reclaimed – Derelict Land: 

Types of land that can be reclaimed – Derelict Land Uses of reclaimed derelict land: Agriculture Industry Housing Recreational facilities (parks) egs. Sunway Lagoon Park in Malaysia (former tin mine); Little Guilin in Bukit Batok Singapore.

Creating New Lands – Reclaiming Wetlands: 

Creating New Lands – Reclaiming Wetlands Wetlands: Areas that are flooded for all or part of the year with fresh or salt water. Types of wetlands: Swamps Marshes Bogs Identified by their vegetation.

Creating New Lands – Reclaiming Wetlands: 

Creating New Lands – Reclaiming Wetlands A) Coastal wetlands: Influenced by tides of the sea. Usually flooded with salt water. Eg. Mangrove swamps found in tropical areas. - They are found along coasts and are subject to flooding by sea water. B) Inland wetlands: Found beside rivers and lakes and are covered with freshwater. They are flooded when rivers overflow.

Creating New Lands – Reclaiming Wetlands: 

Creating New Lands – Reclaiming Wetlands Why a desire to reclaim wetlands? They are highly fertile as the wet conditions encourage the growth of bacteria which decompose organic matter. They can be converted to dry land to provide more land for farming.

Creating New Lands – Reclaiming Wetlands: 

Creating New Lands – Reclaiming Wetlands Wetlands can be reclaimed by draining out the excess water. Building of dikes. Constructing drainage canals. An area that has been drained is usually lower than the surrounding areas. it is prone to flooding. it has to be filled with materials like sand and rocks/gravel. they can be obtained from nearby hills and the seabed.

Creating New Lands – Reclaiming Wetlands: 

Creating New Lands – Reclaiming Wetlands Uses of reclaimed wetlands: Recreation. Housing. Industry. Agriculture. Eg. The swamps along Tanjong Karang were drained for the cultivation of padi. Click here for more on wetlands

Reclaiming land from sea: 

Reclaiming land from sea Empoldering refers to the creation of polders, which are pieces of land in a low lying area reclaimed from a body of water by building dikes and through drainage. Although usually carried out in low-lying coastal areas, it is also applied to areas that are further inland like lakes.

Reclaiming land from sea: 

Reclaiming land from sea Characteristics of polders: Enclosed by dikes (also protects the polder from erosion) to keep out sea or river water. Polders are continually maintained by a system of drainage canals and pumps: - this prevents the them from becoming waterlogged. - Windmills in The Netherlands are used to pump water from the polders. - Amount of water left in the soil is then suitable for cultivation.

Reclaiming land from sea: 

Reclaiming land from sea Stages of empoldering. Construction of dike. Area is then drained using pumps and drainage canals. Soil formation via planting of Reeds, a type of plant sown by aircraft. After three years, reeds are burnt and ploughs used to mix the fertile ash into the soil. Drainage pipes are also constructed. After 15 years, polder is ready for use.

Reclaiming land from sea: 

Reclaiming land from sea Case study of The Netherlands Reclaiming land for Chap Lap Kok Airport in Hong Kong