EROSION CONTROL MEASURES
Actions taken to reduce
soil erosion caused by various factors such as surface water
runoff, tillage operations, wind blowing, etc.
olive groves in which water runoff and sediment loss is
adequately reduced by the construction of terraces (photo
by C. Kosmas)
|Unit of measure
of an area adequately protected from soil erosion by erosion
within the logical framework DPSIR
|Type of Indicator
3. Target and
to the measures to combat desertification.
with respect to desertification
||One of the
most important processes of desertification is soil erosion,
particularly affecting hilly areas. Soil erosion control measures
are related to implementation of programs for protecting areas
from erosion and desertification.
Conventions and agreements
a variety of transboundary legislation as well as EC directives
for land protection from degradation. The CCD has emphasized
the need for actions to combat desertification and promote sustainable
objectives of the indicator
of the best land management practices in combating desertification.
description and basic definitions
and basic concepts
Soil erosion control measures
may be considered to include: contour farming, stabilization
structures, vegetated waterways, strip cropping, terraces
and small water reservoirs.
- In contour farming,
tillage operations are carried out as nearly as practically
possible along the contour. Contour farming has been recently
applied in large areas cultivated with winter crops. Following
the contour farming, each furrow acts as a reservoir to
receive and retain the runoff water.
- Construction of stabilization
structures along water ways consists of reinforced concrete
or monolithic reinforced concrete such as drop spillways,
drop inlets, as well as temporary structures made by rocks,
logs, brush, woven wire and other nondurable materials.
The purpose is to dissipate the energy of running water
and stabilize the soil in cuts from landslides.
- Vegetated waterways
are channels protected by vegetation which absorb the energy
of surface runoff water without damage. Whenever water flows
over bare soil it may pick up and carry along soil particles.
If such runoff water is concentrated by natural topography
or works of man, gullies may develop and destroy valuable
land. Stabilization of waterways is necessary where runoff
occurs from natural watersheds, terracing systems, contour
furrows and diversion channels.
- Strip cropping is the
practice of growing alternative strips of different crops
in the same field. The strips are always laid on the contours.
- Terracing is another
method of soil erosion control accomplished by constructing
broad channels or benches across the slope. Two major types
of can be distinguished: the bench terrace which reduces
land slope and the broad base terrace which removes or retains
water on sloping land.
- Constructions of small
water reservoirs along waterways in hilly areas for irrigation
as well as protecting the land from erosion, from flooding
of the lowland and for conserving water by increasing infiltration
to the aquifers are considered as measures to control erosion
in a broad area (watershed).
of small reservoir along a waterway for storing water
and protecting the land from erosion (photo by C. Kosmas)
Indication of the values/ranges of value
Level of soil erosion
efficacy of the existing soil erosion control measures are defining
on a self explanatory way.
|Limits of the
is assessed qualitatively subjected to personal judgment.
with other indicators
erosion (USLE), Infiltration
capacity, Flooding frequency,
Runoff water storage,
Soil water conservation measures, Terraces
(presence of), Sustainable
of data needs and availability
to calculate the indicator
practices and existing soil erosion control structures in an
area, and assessement of efficacy of the existing soil erosion
measures in protecting soil from erosion.
are usually available and accessible.
of data from national and international sources
can be obtained from national agencies, various regional institutions
involved in management of natural resources.
that have participated in developing the indicator
University of Athens.
of Lisbon, Murcia and Basilicata.
H.R., Hobbs, J. A., and Donahue, R. L. 1980. Soil and water
conservation for productivity and environmental protection.
Prentice-Hall, Inc., Emglewood Cliffs, New Jersey, 320-359 pp.
||Burke, S, and
Thornes, J. 1998. Actions taken by national governmental and
nob-govermrntal organizations to mitigate desertification in
the Mediterranean. European Commission, Environment and Climate
Programme, Directorate-General Science Research and Development,
EURO 18490 EN. 349 p.
Name and address
Dr. C. Kosmas
Agricultural University of Athens,
Laboratory of Soils and Agricultural Chemistry,
Iera Odos 75,
Athens 11855, Greece