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Solar saltworks' wetland function

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Pages :
49 - 57

Korovessis N. and Lekkas T.D.
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Salt, the world’s best-known mineral, is the chemical substance most related to human
civilization history. Apart from his significance for the creation of life on the planet it has been
used as main commodity for centuries.
Man produces salt by solar evaporation since the dawn of human civilization. Nevertheless,
recognition of the unique coastal ecosystems that developed in parallel with the Solar
Saltworks production process evolution is often lacking. The environmental uniqueness of
Solar Saltworks, particularly current operations, is based on the fact that they are integrated,
constructed coastal ecosystems, where regular and hyper saline environments coexist and
establish high significant shelters for wildlife.
The basic steps of the Solar Salt Production Process Evolution are identified. The biological
process that develops along with the salinity vector in the evaporating ponds and crystallizers
produces food for many kinds of birds. Hundreds of bird species depend on Solar Saltworks
ecosystem to feed and/or nest. Many of them have been identified as endangered species or
protected by European or International conventions.
The operation of the Coastal Saline Wetlands is outlined and compared with Solar Saltworks
ecosystem. We emphasize on the case of “Aliki” lake, which is a natural saline coastal
wetland located in Lemnos, a Northern Aegean Sea Island in Greece.

Solar Saltworks, Production process, Biological process, Salinas, Wetlands, Lemnos, Aliki Lake