Support and data provided by the Japanese Ministry of Environment

Support and data provided by the Japanese Ministry of Environment ( were greatly appreciated. LSCE (Laboratoire des Sciences du Climat et de l’Environnement) contribution No. 5057. SPOT-Image and the French national CNES-ISIS (Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales – Incentive for the Scientific use of Images from the SPOT system) program are also acknowledged for providing the SPOT data. “
“River deltas are constructed with surplus fluvial sediment that is not washed away by waves and currents or drowned by the sea. The waterlogged,

low gradient deltaic landscapes favor development of marshes and mangroves, which in turn, contribute organic materials to the delta. In natural conditions, deltas are dynamic systems that adapt to changes in boundary conditions

by advancing, CHIR-99021 solubility dmso retreating, switching, aggrading, and/or drowning. However, most modern deltas are constrained in place by societal needs such as protecting residents, resources, and infrastructure or preserving biodiversity and ecosystem services. Human activities over the last century have inadvertently led to conditions that are unfavorable for deltas (Ericson et al., 2006 and Syvitski et al., 2009). New sediment input has been severely curtailed by trapping behind river dams. Distribution of the remaining sediment load across deltas or along their shores has been altered by engineering works. And accelerating eustatic sea level rise combined with anthropogenic subsidence favors marine flooding that surpasses the normal rate of sediment accumulation, leading in time to permanent drowning of extensive regions of the delta plains. Restoration is envisioned for extensively altered deltas (e.g., Day et al., 2007, Kim et al.,

2009, Allison and Meselhe, 2010 and Paola et al., 2011), but in these PD184352 (CI-1040) hostile conditions virtually all deltas are becoming unstable and require strategies for maintenance. Availability of sediments is the first order concern for delta maintenance. Sediment budgets are, however, poorly constrained for most deltas (Blum and Roberts, 2009 and references therein). We know that fluvial sediments feed the delta plain (topset) and the nearshore delta front zone (foreset) contributing to aggradation and progradation respectively, but only limited quantitative information exists on the laws governing this sediment partition (Paola et al., 2011 and references therein). Except for deltas built in protective embayments (e.g., Stouthamer et al., 2011), the trapping efficiency appears remarkably small as over 50% of the total load may escape to the shelf and beyond (Kim et al., 2009 and Liu et al., 2009). Therefore, a key strategy for delta maintenance is a deliberate and rational sediment management that would optimize the trapping efficiency on the delta plain (e.g., Day et al., 2007, Kim et al., 2009, Allison and Meselhe, 2010 and Paola et al., 2011) and along the delta coast.

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