Geological settings of the protected Selisoo mire (northeastern Estonia) threatened by oil shale mining

H Hiiemaa, M Mustasaar, M Kohv, T Hang, A Jõeleht, K Lasberg, V Kalm
2014 Proceedings of the Estonian Academy of Sciences. Geology = Teaduste Akadeemia toimetised  
The protected Selisoo mire in northeastern Estonia is located above valuable oil shale resources, partly in the permitted mining area. We describe in detail the geomorphology and geological setting of the mire to understand the natural preconditions for its formation, development and preservation. We used the LiDAR-based digital elevation model for relief analysis, mapped the peat thickness with ground-penetrating radar and described the Quaternary cover through corings. Ridges, oriented
more » ... icular to the generally southward-sloping terrain, and shallow depressions at the surface of mineral soil have influenced mire formation and its spatio-temporal dynamics. The Quaternary cover under the mire is thin and highly variable. Therefore the mire is hydrogeologically insufficiently isolated from the limestone bedrock that is drained by the nearby oil shale mine and consequently the mining activities approaching the mire may have a negative influence on the wetland and proposed Natura 2000 site. Natura 2000 type wetlands, both protected or currently outside the nature reserves, cover a significant portion of the prospective oil shale mining areas. The distribution and resilience of those sites may significantly influence further utilization of oil shale resources.
doi:10.3176/earth.2014.09 fatcat:5egkownl3bdsdgc5f4cnoicvxi