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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: A Method for Using Weps to Map Wind Erosion Risk of Alberta Soils

Authors
item Coen, Gerald - AGRICULTURE AND AGRI-FOOD
item Tatarko, John
item Martin, Tim - ALBERTA AGRICULTURE
item Cannon, Karen - ALBERTA AGRICULTURE
item Goddard, Tom - ALBERTA AGRICULTURE
item Sweetland, Norma - AGRICULTURE AND AGRI-FOOD

Submitted to: Journal of Environmental Modeling and Software
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: May 19, 2003
Publication Date: May 19, 2003
Citation: COEN, G.M., TATARKO, J., MARTIN, T.C., CANNON, K.R., GODDARD, T.W., and SWEETLAND, N.J. 2003. A Method for Using WEPS to map Wind Erosion Risk Assessment of Albert Soils. Environmental Modelling and Software 19:185-189.

Interpretive Summary: Alberta has 27 million hectares (66.7 million acres) of agricultural land, a significant portion of which is at risk to wind erosion. Combining recently completed digital soils maps, weather data, and land management descriptions (crop rotations plus cultivation practice), the wind erosion risk on soils/land in the dominantly agricultural portion of Alberta was evaluated using the WEPS (Wind Erosion Prediction System) model. Since WEPS calculates erosion on farm field sized areas it requires specific environmental and management information. We used a quarter section (65 ha or 160 acres) fields as the typical situation for a WEPS estimation. Using these data, erosion risk in Alberta was obtained by the sum of the separate contributions of each soil-management-climate combination. The WEPS model with appropriate databases provides a means to make more spatially explicit, and hopefully more accurate, assessments of wind erosion risks as affected by changing agricultural management.

Technical Abstract: Alberta has 27 million hectares of agricultural land, a significant portion of which is at risk to wind erosion. Combining recently completed provincial digital soils maps (Agricultural Region of Alberta Soil Inventory Database''AGRASID) with geographically referenced spatial weather data and land management descriptions (crop rotations plus cultivation practice) provided an opportunity to evaluate, using the Wind Erosion Prediction System (WEPS) model, wind erosion risk on soils/land in the dominantly agricultural portion of Alberta. Since WEPS is a point model, it requires comparatively specific environmental and management information. We used a quarter section (65 ha) as a typical situation for a WEPS estimation. Using these data, the erosion risk for each of the 28,000 AGRASID polygons in Alberta was obtained by the sum of the separate contributions of each soil'management'climate combination. The WEPS model with appropriate databases provides a means to make more spatially explicit, and hopefully more accurate, assessments of wind erosion risks as affected by changing agricultural management.

Last Modified: 10/30/2014
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