Rainstorm produces four major types of soil erosion including rill erosion, gully erosion, sheet erosion, and splash erosion. (Albinism), Can Squirrels Eat Almonds? The consequences of soil erosion are primarily centered on reduced agricultural productivity as well as soil quality. Deforestation causes some of the worst soil erosion. Deforestation and urbanization are some of the human actions that have continued the cycle of soil loss. Soil erosion is the geological process wherein soil particles are detached and transported by various agents of erosion, namely water, wind, glaciers, and gravity. http://www.ck12.org/earth-science/Soil-Erosion/lesson/Soil-Erosion-HS-ES/?referrer=featured_content. Grazers expose soil by removing the plant cover for an area. The severity of soil erosion is also dependent on the soil type and the presence of vegetation cover. Some of the exposed ground is being reclaimed by planting trees. The accumulation of soil and crop debris at the. Factors like heavy rainfall, flooding, high winds, and even mass movements are part and parcel of the cyclical nature of soil. The soil that is most likely to erode is the nutrient-rich topsoil, which degrades the farmland. Running water is one of the main cause of soil erosion. Starting with the minor soil disruption caused by the impact of falling raindrops, splash erosion moves around small particles in the upper soil layer. Erosion is a process that causes the soil surface to wear out; geological erosion is caused naturally by water, wind or gravity, and accelerated erosion is caused by human use of land. They also churn up the ground with their hooves. Completed construction can also contribute to erosion (Figure 6). The carrying away of dry soil and loose sand particles is known as deflation. Farmers remove native vegetation and then plow the land to plant new seeds. Soil erosion is … The effects of soil erosion include: Lands used for crop production have been substantially affected by soil erosion. © 2020 . The accumulation of soil sediments in dams/drainages and along embankments can reduce their operational lifetime and efficiency. Although soil erosion is a natural process, human activities have greatly accelerated it. Even deforestation or reduced vegetation caused by things like forest fires are sometimes unavoidable. (a) The bare areas of farmland are especially vulnerable to erosion. It is this layer of soil that is endangered by wind and water erosion. Without plant cover, erosion can occur and sweep the land into rivers. Earth Eclipse. These types of erosions are caused by the impacts of raindrops on the soil surface that break down and disperse the soil particles, which are then washed away by the stormwater runoff. 1. Overstocking and overgrazing has led to reduced ground cover and break down of the soil particles, giving room for erosion and accelerating the erosive effects by wind and rain. Soil erosion is, thus, more common in desert or Barren land. Recreational activities may accelerate soil erosion. This technique in parti… Why Do White Rabbits Have Red Eyes? We’d love your input. Thus, soil erosion is a continuous process and may occur either at a relatively unnoticed rate or an alarming rate contributing to copious loss of the topsoil. The problem may become so severe that the land can no longer be cultivated and must be abandoned. The three main forces that cause erosion are water, wind, and ice. It happens in the place where soil is not covered by plants. But, before we go into how to prevent soil erosion, you first need to understand what causes it. Wind erosion picks up dust particles of the soil and throws them into the air, causing air pollution. This form of erosion is a major delivery mechanism for water erosion. Soil structure and composition is another factor that determines erosivity of wind or rainfall. Agriculture is probably the most significant activity that accelerates soil erosion because of the amount of land that is farmed and how much farming practices disturb the ground (Figure 1). Some Other Causes of Soil Erosion: 1. It is likely that most of the cultivated areas around the globe are vulnerable to soil erosion. Of course, winter is also the stormy season in many locations, so wind and rain are available to wash soil away. Logging exposes large areas of land to erosion. Causes of Soil Erosion. The agents of soil erosion are the same as the agents of all types of erosion: water, wind, ice, or gravity. The process involves the loosening of the soil particles, blowing or washing away of the soil particles, and either ends up in the valley and faraway lands or washed away to the oceans by rivers and streams. Why are National Parks Important and How Do They Help the Environment? Water and wind moving across the surface of the soil always carry away some of the soil.If the erosion processes remove top-soil only as rapidly as top-soils formed from the parent material beneath, no harm results. Up and down field tillage practices as well create pathways for surface water runoff and can speed up the soil erosion process. Water. In other words, soil erosion is the removal of the most fertile top layer of soil through water, wind and tillage. Soil erosion is incredibly problematic, but it is also preventable and reducible when you take the right steps. The flow of rivers and streams causes valley erosion. As mentioned, the predominant causes of soil erosion are either related to naturally-occurring events or influenced by the presence of human activity. Also, exposed subsoil is highly erodible to the forces of water and wind. Activities that remove vegetation, disturb the ground, or allow the ground to dry are activities that increase erosion. Soil erosion usually happens in overly disturbed soil systems especially with unfavorable weather conditions. This means most of the environmental problems the world face today arises from soil erosion. The removal of topsoil by wind and water is called soil erosion. Figure 4. The outward and downward movements of sediments and rocks on slanting or slope surfaces due to gravitational pull qualify as an important aspect of the erosion process. Soil erosion decreases soil fertility, which can negatively affect crop yields. Erosion definition. Here are few of the major causes of soil erosion. This reduces soil quality and agricultural productivity. While there are many types of erosion, all have the same basic process - the removal of topsoil by wind or water. Off-road vehicles disturb the landscape and the area eventually develops bare spots where no plants can grow. Deforestationis a major cause of soil erosion, perhaps the main cause. Figure 6. Causes of Soil Erosion: Various agents, like wind, water, deforestation, overgrazing by cattle, and etc., cause soil erosion. The root structure of trees hold the soil in one place. When forests are wiped out, the land becomes exposed, leaving it vulnerable to being washed or blown away by elements. Soil erosion is a natural process which has increasingly been exacerbated by human activities such as agriculture and deforestation. (b) Slash-and-burn agriculture leaves land open for soil erosion and is one of the leading causes of soil erosion in the world. Tillage erosion is the redistribution of soil through the action of tillage and gravity (Figure 8). Put simply, the causes of soil erosion are somewhat inevitable. What are Natural Resources, Types and Threats to Natural Resources. Water and wind erosion are two main agents that degrade soils. 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