Estuarine circulation

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Fontes, Roberto F. C. [UNESP]
Miranda, Luiz B.
Andutta, Fernando
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Estuaries were formed in a narrow coastal boundary zone between the sealand, during the last interglacial period. This contribution is intended to present some aspects of estuarine circulation related to: (1) transitional environments along the coastline that are ultimately dependent on estuarine dynamics and (2) investigations of the processes that have focused on estuarine preservation, water quality, morphology, biodiversity, fisheries which are strongly dependent on the dynamic behavior of estuaries. Some focus is given to the pioneer research published in the last half of the twentieth century. Additionally, experimental theoretical developments have recently been published focusing on the following issues: estuary definition, classification, mixing processes, variability, and circulation. Transitional environments along the coastline are ultimately dependent on the dynamics of estuarine systems; however, they have been strongly affected by human activities. Some of them have been protected by reserve status since the eighteenth century. Human impacts and their effects on estuaries and coasts are important factors that need to be assessed.
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Encyclopedia of Earth Sciences Series, p. 247-258.