Alivia Mukherjee|Dec 4, 2023
IIT Delhi develops 1st national-scale mapping of soil erodibility
IIT Delhi research found that out of 50 districts with the most erodible soil, 29 are in UP, 13 in Bihar, 3 in Gujarat, 2 each in Haryana and Rajasthan, and 1 in Punjab.
NEW DELHI: The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Delhi researchers have developed the first national-scale mapping of soil erodibility. This national-scale mapping of soil erodibility focuses on areas where the soil is most prone to erosion.
The researchers in their study have found that out of the 50 districts with the most erodible soil, 29 are in Uttar Pradesh, 13 are in Bihar, 3 in Gujarat, 2 each in Haryana and Rajasthan, and 1 in Punjab.
The study was conducted by Ravi Raj, Manabendra Saharia, and Sumedha Chakma from the Hydrosense Lab, department of civil engineering at IIT Delhi. According to the institute, “ The national average soil erodibility factors for India as 0.028 and 0.034 t-ha-h/ha/MJ/mm using Nomograph and EPIC models, respectively.”
The IIT Delhi researchers also analyzed the soil erodibility map to visualize its distribution over the national territory in terms of the different soil types, textures, and percentage ranges of erodibility values. “ The results indicated that the K-factor, estimated using the Nomograph approach, exhibited a stronger correlation with the observed K-factors retrieved from the literature” as per the institute.
Manabendra Saharia, department of civil engineering, IIT Delhi said, “ This reflects the combined contribution to erosion due to rainfall, runoff, land use, land cover, deforestation, and agricultural practices. This study fills a critical gap and brings us one step closer to estimating soil loss at a national level and developing a soil erosion model.”
Saharia added, “Soil erosion is a significant trigger for land degradation and a major global geo-environmental issue. Being able to assess its causes and impacts at a high resolution will help us develop a national soil conservation plan that can help our vital agricultural sector”.
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