Why the universal soil loss equation and the revised version of it do not predict event erosion well

School of Resource, Environmental and Heritage Sciences, University of Canberra, Canberra ACT 2601 Australia
Hydrological Processes (Impact Factor: 2.7). 02/2005; 19(3):851 - 854. DOI: 10.1002/hyp.5816
  • Source
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Soil erosion can lead to an increase in the concentration of sediment in the runoff and the surplus floodwater during flood season, which increases the likelihood of a flood disaster. To analyze the relationship between the risk of soil erosion and the surplus floodwater during flood season, a case study of the Jinghe River Basin located in the middle Loess Plateau of China was performed. A measure of the soil erosion risk R-e was presented, which combined the five factors in universal soil loss equation (USLE) with information entropy theory. The results show that the northern watershed features both high and severe levels of soil erosion risk, especially the watershed controlled by the Qingyang (QY) station, whereas the risk level is low or slight in the southern Jinghe basin, the Ziwuling Mountains in the east, and the Liupanshan Mountains in the west. Compared with the USLE, the R-e measure can better reflect the spatial distribution of soil erosion risk and identify the areas corresponding to different soil erosion levels. Data for the sediment yield rate from 37 subbasins also prove the correctness of the R-e measure. The results from a sensitivity analysis indicate that the same amount of factor variability led to a larger soil erosion risk increment in 1986, followed by those of 2000 and 1995. The magnitude of the influences of the R, C, P, and LS factors on the soil erosion risk features a descending order of R > C > P > LS. The regression analysis reveals a statistically significant linear relationship between the coefficient of surplus floodwater and the level of soil erosion risk. The higher level of soil erosion risk can cause more surplus floodwater downstream when the sediment concentration is smaller than the limit of the sediment concentration for river water use. The limit also has important influences on the amount of surplus floodwater during flood season. (C) 2014 American Society of Civil Engineers.
    Journal of Hydrologic Engineering 07/2014; 19(7). DOI:10.1061/(ASCE)HE.1943-5584.0000912 · 1.62 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The sediment yield model of the MUSLE (modified universal soil loss equation) is applied extensively throughout the world, but different performances have been reported of its success relative to measured data. A review of all the available literature is presented to assess the application of the model under different conditions and, ultimately, make a comprehensive judgement on the different aspects to allow readers to adjust their further research. A review of 49 papers showed the variable accuracy of the model, which depends on the manner of calculation and determination of the input and output, and the study time and space scales. There were differences in land use, in correspondence of the physiographic characteristics with those of the original conditions of model development, and even in the experience of researchers in applying the model. The results also show the need to consider the original application of the model, as proposed by its developers, to achieve comparable results. Key words: MUSLE Model; Sediment Yield; Storm Event; Soil Erosion Models; Model Goodness Of Fit.
    Hydrological Sciences Journal/Journal des Sciences Hydrologiques 02/2014; 59(2):365-375. DOI:10.1080/02626667.2013.866239 · 1.25 Impact Factor


Available from