File
Authors
Ayehu, Nigussie Haregeweyn International Platform for Dryland Research and Education, Tottori University / Arid Land Research Center, Tottori University Researchers DB
Tsunekawa, Atsushi International Platform for Dryland Research and Education, Tottori University / Arid Land Research Center, Tottori University Researchers DB KAKEN
Poesen, Jean Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Division of Geography and Tourism
Tsubo, Mitsuru Institute for Soil, Climate and Water, Agricultural Research Council, South Africa Researchers DB KAKEN
Meshesha, Derege Tsegaye Department of Natural Resources Management, Bahir Dar University
Fenta, Ayele Almaw Department of Land Resources Management and Environmental Protection, Mekelle University
Nyssen, Jan Geography Department, Gent University
Adgo, Enyew Department of Natural Resources Management, Bahir Dar University
Keywords
Drought-prone
Grand Ethiopian renaissance dam
Gross soil loss
Gully erosion
Soil and water conservation
Sediment yield
Abstract
In the drought-prone Upper Blue Nile River (UBNR) basin of Ethiopia, soil erosion by water results in significant consequences that also affect downstream countries. However, there have been limited comprehensive studies of this and other basins with diverse agroecologies. We analyzed the variability of gross soil loss and sediment yield rates under present and expected future conditions using a newly devised methodological framework. The results showed that the basin generates an average soil loss rate of 27.5 t ha− 1 yr− 1 and a gross soil loss of ca. 473 Mt yr− 1, of which, at least 10% comes from gully erosion and 26.7% leaves Ethiopia. In a factor analysis, variation in agroecology (average factor score = 1.32) and slope (1.28) were the two factors most responsible for this high spatial variability. About 39% of the basin area is experiencing severe to very severe (> 30 t ha− 1 yr− 1) soil erosion risk, which is strongly linked to population density. Severe or very severe soil erosion affects the largest proportion of land in three subbasins of the UBNR basin: Blue Nile 4 (53.9%), Blue Nile 3 (45.1%), and Jema Shet (42.5%). If appropriate soil and water conservation practices targeted ca. 77.3% of the area with moderate to severe erosion (> 15 t ha− 1 yr− 1), the total soil loss from the basin could be reduced by ca. 52%. Our methodological framework identified the potential risk for soil erosion in large-scale zones, and with a more sophisticated model and input data of higher spatial and temporal resolution, results could be specified locally within these risk zones. Accurate assessment of soil erosion in the UBNR basin would support sustainable use of the basin's land resources and possibly open up prospects for cooperation in the Eastern Nile region.
Publisher
Elsevier
Content Type
Journal Article
Link
ISSN
00489697
EISSN
18791026
Journal Title
SCIENCE OF THE TOTAL ENVIRONMENT
Volume
574
Start Page
95
End Page
108
Published Date
2017-01-01
Publisher-DOI
Text Version
Publisher
Rights
(C) 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/).
Citation
Haregeweyn Nigussie, Tsunekawa Atsushi, Poesen Jean, et al. Comprehensive assessment of soil erosion risk for better land use planning in river basins: Case study of the Upper Blue Nile River. SCIENCE OF THE TOTAL ENVIRONMENT. 2017. 574. 95-108. doi:10.1016/j.scitotenv.2016.09.019
Department
Affiliated Institutes
Language
English
Web of Science Key ut
WOS:000389090100010