The varied orography in the several Mediterranean eco-regions, allows the presence of a certain flora and numerous plants communities that result in the natural landscape of the territory. This section ‘Geology’ aims to provide data on these soils and the correlation between these surfaces and vegetation. The Mediterranean Sea has been the scene of adventures of legend, in which Phoenicians, Romans and Greeks furrowed their waters in search of new worlds and conquests. But beyond this recent history, geology tells us one of the most exciting and catastrophic episodes that in the last 20 million years have taken place in this sea.

Currently the Mediterranean has communication with the Atlantic through the Strait of Gibraltar, but during the upper Miocene, this was done through two marine routes – the Andalusian and Riffean – located in the interior of these mountain ranges. The rapprochement between Africa and Europe made this step was closed, leaving the Mediterranean completely isolated from the Atlantic. This caused a hydrological deficit, the evaporation was higher than the entrance of water, which caused the decrease of the sea level, thus initiating the crisis of salinity of Messinian: the desiccation of the Mediterranean.

This event is known thanks to the geological record since the desiccation propitiated the precipitation of an enormous volume of evaporites in the center of the Mediterranean: mainly gypsum, anhydrite and halite. With the Mediterranean desiccated, the climate was altered and new ways were created that favored the migration of terrestrial fauna between Africa and Europe. The crisis of salinity ends with the reflooding of the Mediterranean as consequence of the opening of the Strait of Gibraltar, a new marine route connecting the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea.

From ROBUSTE we want to thank the collaboration of the research groups that cooperate in this new information channel with the aim of disseminating their works, those that concern the Mediterranean ecoregions.

Access the works:

  • InterGEO: analysis and monitoring of the seismogenic behavior of intersegment regions in active cleft faults