Economy, Domestic Economy

Soil Erosion Rate Alarming

Soil Erosion Rate AlarmingSoil Erosion Rate Alarming

The head of Iranian National Standards Organization said the threat of soil erosion is critical as its rate is 20 times above the global standards.

Nayereh Pirouzbakht, speaking at the Environment and Standards Conference, stated the two areas of standard and environment is far beyond the national boundaries.

She added that the activities of human beings have caused the environment to undergo a lot of changes, which has endangered the lives of different species. “A bleak future awaits humanity and the environment if the same trend continues.”

Pirouzbakht warned about air pollution as one the most important issues facing human society and asserted that governments plan for economic development in a way that it severely damages the environment.

In the near future, only organizations can carry on with their activities which take the environmental matters into consideration in their functions, she stressed.

The soil erosion rate is another major environmental challenge which is mostly a result of harmful and inappropriate human activities.

Pirouzbakht named “environmental regulations, environmental ethics, and education” as three components of preservation and described the government measures on this area in the past year as “effective”.

She emphasized the role of standards in preserving the environment and stated that today standard has been redefined and is beyond social principles. “It is not limited to goods and items as in recent years we have witnessed that standards for human rights have been set.”

Soil erosion by water, wind and tillage affects both agriculture and the natural environment. Soil loss, and its associated impacts, is one of the most important (yet probably the least well-known) of today’s environmental problems.

Soil erosion is a natural process but becomes problematic when human activity causes it to occur much faster than under natural conditions.

Half of the topsoil on the planet has been lost in the last 150 years. In addition to erosion, soil quality is affected by other aspects of agriculture. These impacts include compaction, loss of soil structure, nutrient degradation, and soil salinity. These are very real and at times severe issues.

The effects of soil erosion go beyond the loss of fertile land. It has led to increased pollution and sedimentation in streams and rivers, clogging these waterways and causing declines in fish and other species. And degraded lands are also often less able to hold onto water, which can worsen flooding. Sustainable land use can help to reduce the impacts of agriculture and livestock, preventing soil degradation and erosion and the loss of valuable land to desertification.

The health of soil is a primary concern to farmers and the global community whose livelihoods depend on well managed agriculture that starts with the dirt beneath our feet. While there are many challenges to maintaining healthy soil, there are also solutions and a dedicated people who work to innovate and maintain the fragile skin from which biodiversity springs.

In Iran, according to a report by agriculture ministry dubbed ‘history and status of soil in Iran’, dated April 2012, the critical aspect of soil erosion is that the rate of the process is highly dependent on anthropogenic actions.

Natural rates of soil erosion are lower for soil with a good cover of vegetation than for bare soil. In fact, any human actions that uncover soil (e.g. farming, logging, building, overgrazing, off road vehicles, fires, etc.) greatly enhance soil erosion rates.

Soil erosion in agricultural systems is a very important problem to manage. Soil can be eroded away by wind and water. High winds can blow away loose soils from flat or hilly terrain. Water erosion generally occurs only on slopes, and its severity increases with the severity of the slope. In the Midwest much of the wind erosion occurs in winter when the ground is frozen, but the upper most soil layer is dry and loose. Water erosion occurs during the spring with the thawing and melting action of the snow.

Soil erosion in Iran is basically divided into two types which are seen in field and in watershed regions.