Revista Egitania Sciencia - Volume 11 | ARTICLE


Author: António Canatário Duarte (, Victor Pissarra Cavaleiro ( e Ana Paula Leite (

Publication: Revista Egitania Sciencia - Volume 11

Water erosion, with the consequent soil loss, represents a cost to agriculture as it means loss of productive land, nutrients and organic matter as well as environmental degradation of water resources downstream. This cycle of unsustainability will lead to a physical desertification of places accompanied by a human desertification. It is essential the understanding of the process, the influence of each factor that it depends on, for the adoption of more effective actions for its prevention. This study takes place in a small hydrographic basin (190 ha), located in the Idanha-a-Nova county, where a suitable experimental device was installed. The randomness of the Mediterranean climate can determine years with higher volumes of precipitation that correspond to more erosive events, and driest years with the occurrence of fewer erosive events, but with expanded erosive potential in some of them. In this analysis we draw conclusions about the strong protective effect of vegetation by comparing the sediment concentration in water in two erosion events, corresponding to quite different covering conditions in the basin. The superficial leakage will be more or less powered, depending on how other factors that influence the erosive process, namely, vegetation, soil, topography, and agricultural practices of farmers will manifest themselves.

Keywords: Water erosion, soils, physical desertification, human desertification, mediterranean climate

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