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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service


item Sparovek, Gerd
item De Jong Van Lier, Quirijn
item Ranieri, Simone
item Demaria, Isabella
item Flanagan, Dennis

Submitted to: Brazilian Journal of Agrocomputation
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/1/2001
Publication Date: 6/30/2001
Citation: Sparovek G., De Jong Van Lier, Q., Ranieri, S.B., DeMaria, I.C., Flanagan, D.C. Application of a databse interface (EDI) for erosion predictions in Brazil. Brazilian Journal of Agrocomputation. 2001. v. 1(1). p. 5-12.

Interpretive Summary: This paper describes the use of special computer mapping software to automate the prediction of soil erosion with common tools, in this case the Universal Soil Loss Equation (USLE) and the Water Erosion Prediction Project (WEPP) model. The new software was applied to a watershed in Brazil that is currently in sugarcane production. The results show that the approach works quite well. The impact of this research is that it makes it easier to estimate soil erosion at the small watershed scale, and to see how different management practices can affect soil loss. It can also be used to identify critical areas that are predicted to have very high erosion compared to the rest of the watershed, which could then be targeted first for treatment. Determining the best land management is important for protecting the soil and water resources, as well as for maintaining farm profits.

Technical Abstract: The quantification of erosion at the small watershed scale as a georeferenced variable is essential for its analysis together with other important data treated in Geographic Information Systems (GIS). This paper describes a computer program named Erosion Vector Interface (EVI) that allows georeferenced applications of USLE and the WEPP model at the watershed scale. EVI operates as a pure interface, allowing the connection with any GIS that works with vector formats. The georeferenced vector-based design, the action as a pure interface and the flexibility to fit to different scales are aspects that distinguish EVI from other spatial erosion prediction tools. For use with USLE, each soil type has its own K value and each land use has its own CP value. The R factor is constant and LS-values are calculated from topographic data. For use with WEPP, EVI builds a soil, management and slope input file for each transect after separating it into Overland Flow Elements, which are used by WEPP for erosion rate calculations. Based on input data from either USLE or WEPP, EVI will generate output files with longitude and latitude in meters and soil loss in kg/m**2/yr or Mg/ha/yr. To illustrate EVI's performance in a scale compatible with land use planning for the Brazilian small watershed programs, a practical example of a sugarcane area located at the southeastern part of Brazil was used. The resulting maps and some statistics are presented and it is concluded that EVI is an efficient program for georeferenced erosion prediction with both WEPP and USLE. The presentation of erosion rates as a georeferenced information gives a new dimension to the erosion process as compared to results given only as mean rates.

Last Modified: 05/25/2017
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