For the InstructorThese student materials complement the A Growing Concern Instructor Materials. If you would like your students to have access to the student materials, we suggest you either point them at the Student Version which omits the framing pages with information designed for faculty (and this box). Or you can download these pages in several formats that you can include in your course website or local Learning Managment System. Learn more about using, modifying, and sharing InTeGrate teaching materials.
Agricultural practices (C and P factors)
These images illustrate the impact that conservation practices can have on soil erosion rates in agricultural lands. Terracing (creating a series of "steps" on steep slopes), stripcropping (alternating different crops in a single field), and contouring (planting rows along the contour of the hill), as shown in the image on the right, are common conservation practices that can help significantly reduce soil erosion in agricultural landscapes. The effectiveness of these practices can be explained by considering how water moves through a landscape. In the image on the left, water can flow freely downhill, taking soil particles with it. The conservation practices employed in the other image impede the flow of water, slowing it down giving it less erosive power. The impact of these practices are reflected in the support practices factor, abbreviated by the letter "P". These practices are big scale investments and typically don't change on a regular basis.
- Renard, K. G., Foster, G. R., Weesies, G. A., and Porter, J. P., 1991, RUSLE - Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation: Journal of Soil and Water Conservation, v. 46, no. 1, p. 30-33.
- Renard, K. G., Foster, G. R., Weesies, G. A., McCool, D. K., and Yoder, D. C., 1997, Predicting Soil Erosion by Water: A guide to conservation planning with the Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation (RUSLE) , USDA Agricultural Research Service Agriculture Handbook Number 703, 384 p.
- RULSE: On-line Soil Erosion Assessment Tool