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International Journal of Geophysics
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 238478, 8 pages
Research Article

Geoelectrical Surveys for Characterization of the Coastal Saltwater Intrusion in Metapontum Forest Reserve (Southern Italy)

Institute of Methodologies for Environmental Analysis, CNR, 85050 Tito, Italy

Received 25 May 2011; Revised 2 November 2011; Accepted 29 November 2011

Academic Editor: Sabatino Piscitelli

Copyright © 2012 Antonio Satriani et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


A geoelectrical survey was carried out in the Metapontum Forest Reserve located along the Ionian coast of the Basilicata region (Southern Italy). In this work we used the method of two-dimensional electrical resistivity tomography for obtaining high-resolution electrical images in the investigated site. In particular, three electrical resistivity tomography, all orthogonal to the coastline, in the investigated area were carried out. To complete and integrate the geophysical data, soil and groundwater samplings, seventeen and five, respectively, were analyzed using chemical physical techniques. Geoelectrical survey, supported by laboratory analysis of soil and water samples have revealed the presence of a process of saltwater in coastal Forest Reserve of Metapontum, which have caused the decline of the existing pine forest with the consequent erosion and desertification problems. The results have disclosed the way to identify and discriminate large areas affected by intensive soil salinization and high resolution electrical images of the subsurface electrical resistivity plays a key role in delineating the saltwater intrusion front in coastal areas. Furthermore, our integrated study represents a contribution to the future programs for the protection, planning, and management of the terrestrial and marine resources in this coastal area.