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1: Factors influencing soil erosion by water. Figure was derived from various publications cited in the text

1: Factors influencing soil erosion by water. Figure was derived from various publications cited in the text

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This report shows that there is good evidence from scientific research that the land management practices adopted by farmers have a direct impact on soil condition. Improving soil condition benefits production as well as providing a range of ecosystem services to the broader community; including water purification, breakdown of wastes and toxins, r...

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Citations

... Soils underpin, literally and figuratively, all of the processes that support human societies and economies and, indeed, all other terrestrial life on earth (Steven et al., 2012). Ensuring food security for the everincreasing world population has a direct relation with fertility and productivity of soils. ...
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Information on soil fertility assessment and mapping of arable land helps to design appropriate soil fertility management practices. Experiment was conducted at Amaregenda-Abajarso sub-watershed to assess the fertility status and mapping the spatial variability of selected soil fertility parameters. Based on land use type, soil color, altitude, slope gradient and aspect, and to a lesser extent soil management practices, the study area was divided into 8 land units (LUs). Then, a total of 24 composite surface soil samples were collected for laboratory analysis. All of the analyzed soil properties vary significantly (P < 0.01) among LUs except C: N ratio. The mean values of sand and clay fractions ranged from 67.33 (LU 8) to 43.4% (LU 3) and 40.93 (LU 1) to 12.67% (LU 8), respectively. Dominantly, sandy clay loam soil textural class was recorded. The mean soil bulk density varied from 1.15 to 1.38 g cm-3. The lowest (6.05) and highest (6.74) values of soil pH were recorded for LUs 8 and 2, respectively. The organic matter content of soils ranged from 1.33 (LU 2) to 3.70% (LU 8). The total N content ranged from 0.09 (LU 2) to 0.30% (LU8). The available P content ranged from 9.31 (LU 8) to 19.53 mg/kg soil (LU 1). The exchangeable K content ranged from 97.48 (LU 2) to 357.70 mg kg-1 (LU8). The highest CEC (46.6) and lowest (33.47 cmol (+) kg-1) values were recorded in LUs 8 and 5, respectively. Exchangeable Ca and Mg ranged from 9.25 (LU 4) to 23.35 cmol (+) kg-1 (LU 2) and 2.76 (LU 5) to 8.50 cmol (+) kg-1 (LU 3), respectively. The highest (76.86%) and lowest (50.61%) mean values of PBS were recorded for LUs 2 and 4, respectively. The EDTA extractable Fe, Mn, Cu and Zn, in mg kg-1 , ranged from 56.03 to 96.19, 65.30 to 226.48, 1.84 to 6.19, and 1.12 to 4.34, respectively. From the total LUs, 87.5 % were low in OM; 50%, deficient in total N and Fe, 25% were deficient in Cu and Zn and 12.5% were deficient in available K and Mn. In conclusion, integrated plant nutrient management practices that use organic inputs, mineral fertilizers, and improved crop varieties that can be adapted to local farming situations should be implemented to improve and sustain productivity of cultivated land in the area.
... Soils underpin, literally and figuratively, all of the processes that support human societies and economies and, indeed, all other terrestrial life on earth (Steven et al., 2012). Ensuring food security for the everincreasing world population has a direct relation with fertility and productivity of soils. ...
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Information on soil fertility assessment and mapping of arable land helps to design appropriate soil fertility management practices. Experiment was conducted at Amaregenda-Abajarso sub-watershed to assess the fertility status and mapping the spatial variability of selected soil fertility parameters. Based on land use type, soil color, altitude, slope gradient and aspect, and to a lesser extent soil management practices, the study area was divided into 8 land units (LUs). Then, a total of 24 composite surface soil samples were collected for laboratory analysis. All of the analyzed soil properties vary significantly (P < 0.01) among LUs except C: N ratio. The mean values of sand and clay fractions ranged from 67.33 (LU 8) to 43.4% (LU 3) and 40.93 (LU 1) to 12.67% (LU 8), respectively. Dominantly, sandy clay loam soil textural class was recorded. The mean soil bulk density varied from 1.15 to 1.38 g cm-3. The lowest (6.05) and highest (6.74) values of soil pH were recorded for LUs 8 and 2, respectively. The organic matter content of soils ranged from 1.33 (LU 2) to 3.70% (LU 8). The total N content ranged from 0.09 (LU 2) to 0.30% (LU8). The available P content ranged from 9.31 (LU 8) to 19.53 mg/kg soil (LU 1). The exchangeable K content ranged from 97.48 (LU 2) to 357.70 mg kg-1 (LU8). The highest CEC (46.6) and lowest (33.47 cmol (+) kg-1) values were recorded in LUs 8 and 5, respectively. Exchangeable Ca and Mg ranged from 9.25 (LU 4) to 23.35 cmol (+) kg-1 (LU 2) and 2.76 (LU 5) to 8.50 cmol (+) kg-1 (LU 3), respectively. The highest (76.86%) and lowest (50.61%) mean values of PBS were recorded for LUs 2 and 4, respectively. The EDTA extractable Fe, Mn, Cu and Zn, in mg kg-1 , ranged from 56.03 to 96.19, 65.30 to 226.48, 1.84 to 6.19, and 1.12 to 4.34, respectively. From the total LUs, 87.5 % were low in OM; 50%, deficient in total N and Fe, 25% were deficient in Cu and Zn and 12.5% were deficient in available K and Mn. In conclusion, integrated plant nutrient management practices that use organic inputs, mineral fertilizers, and improved crop varieties that can be adapted to local farming situations should be implemented to improve and sustain productivity of cultivated land in the area.
... Climate and land management affect net primary production (agricultural productivity), that in turn influences soil processes and health. Agricultural production impacts many soil properties such as soil structure, bulk density, soil microbes and soil carbon [1] [2] [3] [4]. It is important to ensure soil health is not negatively impacted by agricultural practices to sustain productivity in the long term. ...
... It is important to ensure soil health is not negatively impacted by agricultural practices to sustain productivity in the long term. Converting land use from native vegetation to agriculture production results in multiple changes, including increases in soil carbon and nutrients from crop residue and fertiliser inputs, and changes in soil microbial activity, plant production and other aspects of soil quality [4] [5]. ...
... Total NDVI accumulation within a year, Spring vegetation cover (NDVI) and fractional ground cover (FGC) are examples of measures that can be derived from remotely sensed data, and that may provide useful information about agricultural productivity and changes in soil health. FGC is also an important factor in wind and water erosion mitigation [4]. This study aims to improve our understanding of the influence of land cover history and various environmental factors on soil condition in the Wimmera region of north-west Victoria, by examining linkages between vegetation cover over time (derived from satellite imagery) and factors such as rainfall and production history. ...
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Measuring different indicators of production and soil health over the long term will help build a picture of soil health and productivity across the landscape. This paper examines the potential contribution of satellite imagery to this area. This investigation undertook a very long time series analysis of Landsat imagery (approximately 40 years) and MODIS imagery (approximately 10 years). Novel datasets and approaches were used to assess areas based on land use history and land cover condition. Spring Normalised Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI), land cover maps based on NDVI thresholds, annual cumulative NDVI and fractional ground cover (FGC) were used to identify trends in vegetation cover change at a landscape scale, and their relationship with factors such as land use intensification history, geomorphology, rainfall, and land use. This work has improved the broad, baseline understanding of production variation across the landscape, while also providing a practical demonstration of the integration of a range of disparate data sources. Available at: http://iopscience.iop.org/1755-1315/25/1/012013/
... Soil security is necessary to achieve sustainable development and long-term agricultural productivity. Soil is secured through agricultural land management practices that are matched to the functional capability of the soil and which improve and maintain soil condition ( " Soil condition " can be used interchangeably with " soil quality " and is the official term used by the Australian Government to describe " the capacity of a soil to function, within land use and ecosystem boundaries, to sustain biological productivity, maintain environmental health, and promote plant, animal, and human health " [3,4]). This requires consideration and understanding of the five dimensions of soil security that encompass the biophysical, social and economic aspects of soil, and policy and legal frameworks that support them, i.e.: ...
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The Australian National Soil Research, Development and Extension Strategy identifies soil security as a foundation for the current and future productivity and profitability of Australian agriculture. Current agricultural production is attenuated by soil degradation. Future production is highly dependent on the condition of Australian soils. Soil degradation in Australia is dominated in its areal extent by soil erosion. We reiterate the use of soil erosion as a reliable indicator of soil condition/quality and a practical measure of soil degradation. We describe three key phases of soil degradation since European settlement, and show a clear link between inappropriate agricultural practices and the resultant soil degradation. We demonstrate that modern agricultural practices have had a marked effect on reducing erosion. Current advances in agricultural soil management could lead to further stabilization and slowing of soil degradation in addition to improving productivity. However, policy complacency towards soil degradation, combined with future climate projections of increased rainfall intensity but decreased volumes, warmer temperatures and increased time in drought may once again accelerate soil degradation and susceptibility to erosion and thus limit the ability of agriculture to advance without further improving soil management practices. Monitoring soil degradation may indicate land degradation, but we contend that monitoring will not lead to soil security. We propose the adoption of a triaging approach to soil degradation using the soil security framework, to prioritise treatment plans that engage science and agriculture to develop practices that simultaneously increase productivity and improve soil condition. This will provide a public policy platform for efficient allocation of public and private resources to secure Australia’s soil resource.
... In the case of vegetation the saline water can also cause the plants to die of drought, since saline water, having lower osmotic potential than the plant's leaf, retards the plant's capacity to draw enough H2O to sustain photosynthesis (ibid). These changes in soil biodiversity impact soil function and so the soil ecosystem capacity to provide ecosystem services (Cork, 2012a), such as nutrient cycling and soil formation. ...
... Others go further from there and translate the soil characteristics and attributes into the three remaining groups of ecosystem services (the provisioning, regulating and cultural). This ecosystem services approach to sustainable land management, based on the 'stock-fund'-'fund-service' principle (Robinson et al., 2013), has become the focus of the research for soil scientists and land managers, especially in the last decade (Aguilar, 1999; Cork et al., 2012a; Dominati et al, 2010; Ferreira et al., 2013). Even though there is no scientific consensus on the definition, valuation and nature of the ecosystem services (Dominati et al., 2010), it remains popular among land managers for its holistic outlook and flexibility of indicators (Ferreira et al., 2013; Patterson & Mackay, 2010). ...
... The scheme is however missing a valid method of evaluation of the quality and quantity of the feedback loops, which we call ecosystem services (Wheatbelt NRM, 2013b, p.3). The feedback loop from natural resources to community and industry-derived ecosystem services represents the provisioning, regulating and cultural services, while the other feedback loop represents the supporting service (Cork et al., 2012a; Cork et al., 2012b). To accommodate the scheme, the WNRM calls for a tool which would (i) be employable alongside the existing DSMO efficiency evaluation framework and would (ii) comply with both the State Salinity Strategy and the WNRM strategy (Wheatbelt NRM, 2013b). ...
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Dryland-salinity management options aim to positively influence the adverse human-induced processes which lead to salinisation of top-soil. Specifically, the processes causing dryland-salinity are rising saline groundwater table and soil erosion. In the Avon region of Western Australia, the management options are evaluated solely on the basis of their efficiency in lowering groundwater tables. However, recently the need to take into account also their wider impact on the ecosystems' resilience has been recognised as well. Nevertheless, the tool to assess these impacts is missing. The aim of this thesis is to synthesise the missing tool from existing ecosystem services-based land-use evaluation frameworks, which would fit the environmental issue, regional socio-economic demands and the existing dryland salinity management options' efficiency evaluation framework. The thesis builds on secondary data and describes (i) the environmental issue of dryland salinity in Australia, (ii) the dryland salinity-environmental, economic, social and political environments of the Avon region, and (iii) five chosen evaluation frameworks which assess the impact of land-use on ecosystem resilience. The proposed optimal framework for the Avon region is then a combination of two existent frameworks: (i) ecosystem resilience evaluation framework & (ii) the ecosystem services economic valuation framework. Where the inputs of the proposed optimal framework are: (i) soil properties, (ii) external natural and anthropogenic drivers and (iii) beneficiaries; the transfer phase is represented by the soil processes; and the output of the framework are (i) ecosystem services and (ii) their economically valued benefits.
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Ecosystem services (ES) are the benefits people obtain from ecosystems. A substantial part of human well-being is dependent on the sustainable flow of ES. Climate change, economic growth and an increasing human population has placed greater pressures on global ES. Australia’s ecosystems are among the most vulnerable sectors to climate change. Hence, a comprehensive review is necessary to explore ES research that integrates climate change impacts. Our review reveals that ES research in Australia, stimulated in the early 2000s, has continued to increase consistently after the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment. Australian ES research has primarily focused on the impact of land-use change and management, policy and governance issues, but less on the impact of climate change on ES. Climate change models show that climate will threaten most of the main ES in Australia by 2050. For the sustainable management of these ES – incorporating climate change – ecosystem and ES specific adaptations are suggested as the best sustainable policy tools for the future. Therefore, further research needs to incorporate climate change and ES for evidence-based sustainable management of Australia’s ES. We provide the following recommendations for future ES research: (i) evaluating the extent and trend of climate change impacts on ES through consideration of different climate change scenarios; (ii) preparing vulnerability maps of important ES that are likely to be sensitive to climate change and (iii) developing ecosystem and ES specific adaptations to climate change that involve key stakeholders.