Author(s): YueQing X, XiaoMei S, XiangBin K, Jian P, YunLong C
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Abstract Soil erosion is a serious environmental problem in Guizhou Province, which is located in the centre of the karst areas of southwestern China. Unfortunately, Guizhou Province suffers from a lack of financial resources to research, monitor and model soil erosion at large watershed. In order to assess the soil erosion risk, soil erosion modeling at the watershed scale are urgently needed to be undertaken. This study integrated the Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation (RUSLE) with a Geographic Information System (GIS) to estimate soil loss and identify the risk erosion areas in the Maotiao River watershed, which is a typical rural watershed in Guizhou Province. All factors used in the RUSLE were calculated for the watershed using local data. It was classified into five categories ranging from minimal risk to extreme erosion risk depending on the calculated soil erosion amount. The soil erosion map was linked to land use, elevation and slope maps to explore the relationship between soil erosion and environmental factors and identify the areas of soil erosion risk. The results can be used to advice the local government in prioritizing the areas of immediate erosion mitigation. The integrated approach allows for relatively easy, fast, and cost-effective estimation of spatially distributed soil erosion. It thus indicates that RUSLE-GIS model is a useful and efficient tool for evaluating and mapping soil erosion risk at a large watershed scale in Guizhou Province.
This article was published in Environ Monit Assess
and referenced in Hydrology: Current Research