We use cookies to give you the best experience possible. By continuing we’ll assume you’re on board with our cookie policy

Mass Wasting

essay
The whole doc is available only for registered users OPEN DOC

A limited time offer! Get a custom sample essay written according to your requirements urgent 3h delivery guaranteed

Order Now

Mass wasting is the movement of rock and soil at a slope downward due to the force of gravity. Some forms of mass wasting include landslides, rock falls and slides. Mass wasting occurs when the gravitational force exceeds the forces holding the slope together.

Some factors which influence mass wasting include weathering and slope gradient. Slope gradient refers to the steepness of the slope, the steeper the slope, the higher the shear forces of gravity experienced by the rock. Streams, and man made excavations are usually the culprits in steepening of the slope gradient. Weathering refers to the erosion of rock into unconsolidated soil. Mass wasting is more likely to occur in unconsolidated material as opposed to solid rock.

The effect of climate on mass wasting can be inferred by thinking about its effect on weathering. Colder climates can influence weathering through frost action. Since water expands when it freezes, water which gets inside of rocks will tend to break the rock apart when wintertime comes. This yearly cycle of expansion and contraction will contribute to weakening of the slope.

While this loosening of the soil through freezing is not present in arid climates, that doesn’t mean that weathering does not occur in these areas. Sudden large amounts of rainfall can drop a large amount of liquid water on the slope at a short period of time and the lack of vegetation to hold the slope together as well as to absorb the water can trigger landslides and mudflows. As a whole though, I would have to say that the activities of frost action in colder climates would make mass wasting in these areas much more prevalent compared to those in dry and hot areas.

Bibliography

Thompson, G.. & Turk, J. (2007) Earth Science and the Environment 4th edition. New York: Thomson Brooks Cole

Related Topics

We can write a custom essay

According to Your Specific Requirements

Order an essay
Get Access To The Full Essay
icon
300+
Materials Daily
icon
100,000+ Subjects
2000+ Topics
icon
Free Plagiarism
Checker
icon
All Materials
are Cataloged Well

Sorry, but copying text is forbidden on this website. If you need this or any other sample, we can send it to you via email.

By clicking "SEND", you agree to our terms of service and privacy policy. We'll occasionally send you account related and promo emails.
Sorry, but only registered users have full access

How about getting this access
immediately?

Become a member

Your Answer Is Very Helpful For Us
Thank You A Lot!

logo

Emma Taylor

online

Hi there!
Would you like to get such a paper?
How about getting a customized one?

Can't find What you were Looking for?

Get access to our huge, continuously updated knowledge base

The next update will be in:
14 : 59 : 59
Become a Member