Soil erosion is a natural occurrence where land or soil is removed from one area and deposited to another, through processes such as rainfall. Through different kinds of soil erosion, negative changes to the environment occur, resulting in land degradation, disturbance of aquatic ecosystems, and even pollution. And while soil erosion is a completely natural process, human activity, waste and negligence contribute to this growing ecological and environmental issue.
If you want to learn more about the kinds of soil erosion and how they affect the world we live in, this article will give you information that you might want to know.
– Splash Erosion – Splash erosion is the first and perhaps the least problematic kind of erosion caused by rainfall. The impact of raindrops hitting the top soil has a mildly explosive impact that causes individual soil particles to splash and move around. These particles can rise as high as fifty to sixty centimeters, and can move up to a hundred and fifty meters from their point of origin.
– Sheet Erosion – This kind of soil erosion refers to the movement of loosened soil particles from one area to another. This is generally also caused by rainfall. It is capable of covering a large area of land and may not be instantly noticeable. Once ignored, sheet erosion can cause agricultural damage by destroying the nutritive value and organic particles of land, rendering the soil unproductive in the long run.
– Rill Erosion – A rill is defined as a small, narrow indentation found in top soil layers, which expedite the process of land erosion by acting as a channel to carry water from one area to another. Once rills appear on soil, they are taken as signs of the beginning of major erosion, and can potentially lead to the collapse and dislodge of soil particles and the eventual formation of streams or rivers.
– Gully Erosion – This kind of soil erosion is the second and more damaging phase of rill erosion. Gullies are basically ditches that carry running water. They develop over time from small, narrow rills, and eventually expand to carry more water, causing loss of land and sedimentation. They are often found on slopes of hills or mountains.
– Stream Channel Erosion – Stream channel erosion occurs in valleys, where the downward flow of water is consistent and linear. In stream channel erosion, water acts as the major erosive factor, but the collapse of soil is also aided by other erosive and abrasive particles such as rocks and pebbles.
Since erosion can do great damage not just to agricultural land but to other ecosystems as well, it is important to take steps to try to prevent them from occurring. Increasing vegetation and caring for the growth of trees and shrubs is one way of reducing erosion. In areas needing construction, operating machinery has to be done with careful consideration to the land that surrounds such areas. Conservation of natural wetlands can also help, since these patches of land can contribute to lessening flood damage.