EGU24-14955, updated on 09 Mar 2024
EGU General Assembly 2024
© Author(s) 2024. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Multi-Technique Analysis and Landscape Evolution: Implications for Landslide-Fluvial Cascading Hazards Assessment

Marta Guinau1, Celeste Fernández-Jiménez1, Anna Barra2, Marc Viaplana-Muzas3, Ariadna Flores1, Maria Ortuño1, Marta González4, Jordi Pinyol4, and Clàudia Abancó5
Marta Guinau et al.
  • 1Department of Earth and Ocean Dynamics, GRC RISKNAT, UB-Geomodels, Faculty of Earth Sciences, Universitat de Barcelona (UB), 08028 Barcelona, Spain (
  • 2Centre Tecnològic de Telecomunicacions de Catalunya (CTTC/CERCA), Geomatics Division, 08860 Castelldefels, Spain (
  • 3Group of Dynamics of the Lithosphere (GDL), Geosciences Barcelona, Geo3Bcn - CSIC, Barcelona, Spain (
  • 4Unit of active geological processes and Geological Hazard Information System (SIRG). Cartographic and Geological Institute of Catalonia, Parc de Montjuïc S/N, 08038, Barcelona, Spain (
  • 5Department of Mineralogy, Petrology and Applied Geology, Faculty of Earth Sciences, University of Barcelona, Barcelona, Spain (

The interaction between slope instability processes and river dynamics often triggers a cascade effect. Sediment influx from slopes can obstruct rivers, leading to upstream flooding and potential catastrophic flash floods downstream upon dam breakage. In addition, the incision of the drainage network steepens the valley hillslopes, further exacerbating slope instability processes, modifying the geomorphology and the sedimentary fluxes and increasing the occurrence of landslide-derived hazards.

In this regard, a comprehensive and updated landslide inventory, especially focusing on the interconnection between landslides and drainage networks, is crucial for effective hazard assessment considering these cascading effects induced by slope and fluvial processes.

This study presents advancements in landslide mapping by integrating data from Multi-Temporal Synthetic Aperture Radar (MT-InSAR) and landscape evolution analysis through geomorphological indices such as Chi, Normalized Channel Steepness Index (Ksn) and Stream Length-Gradient Index (SL). Identification of anomalies along rivers using Ksn and SL (knickpoints or knickzones) aided in pinpointing abnormal slopes due to sediment influx from landslides. Additionally, active areas were delineated using the ADAfinder tool, extracting data from MT-InSAR provided by the European Ground Motion Service (EGMS). This multi-technique analysis highlighted the slopes of interest. Landslides identified with these techniques were delimited and characterized in terms of type assignment, using 2x2 m DTM hillshades derived from airborne LiDAR data and field observations.

The upper catchments of the Garona and Noguera Pallaresa rivers (central Pyrenees-NE Spain) were selected as study cases. The study highlights the disequilibrium in the watershed divide between Noguera Pallaresa and Garona basins, suggesting a transition toward equilibrium favouring a main divide migration towards the Noguera Pallaresa due to hillslope processes. The assessment of the equilibrium profile geometry of the Noguera Pallaresa river at a regional scale suggests at least two main knickpoints. The river sections downstream of the knickpoints are associated with landslides triggered by post-glacial dynamics and incision wave effects. Combining SL and Ksn curves with Active Deformation Areas (ADA) underscores areas with potentially reactivating deep-seated landslides, signifying potential high damages in case of low-probability but catastrophic reactivations.

In conclusion, the integration of diverse methodologies shed light on the spatial relationship between transient features in the landscape (knickpoints) and landslide occurrence, emphasizing the need for a comprehensive approach to mitigate landslide and fluvial risks in the Noguera Pallaresa and Garona river basins.

How to cite: Guinau, M., Fernández-Jiménez, C., Barra, A., Viaplana-Muzas, M., Flores, A., Ortuño, M., González, M., Pinyol, J., and Abancó, C.: Multi-Technique Analysis and Landscape Evolution: Implications for Landslide-Fluvial Cascading Hazards Assessment, EGU General Assembly 2024, Vienna, Austria, 14–19 Apr 2024, EGU24-14955,, 2024.