HS9.6Quantifying erosion, sediment and contaminant redistribution in river basins
|Convener: Will Blake | Co-Conveners: Pascal Boeckx , Ana Navas , Marcel van der Perk , Patrick Byrne , Olivier Evrard , Gema Guzmán|
Enhanced soil erosion and downstream sedimentation, and associated contaminant transfers, have a major impact on food, water and energy security but the linkages between these are often not clearly defined or recognised in local, national and regional land management strategies.
Soil erosion by water poses a serious threat to water and nutrient retention, biodiversity and plant primary productivity on agricultural land. Downstream, sediment and nutrient export to rivers and lakes contributes to eutrophication and contamination of water resources by algae and associated natural toxins, affecting the functioning of wetland and lake ecosystems. Furthermore, siltation enhances the habitats that promote water-borne disease vectors and siltation of reservoirs compromises water supply and HEP generation.
Against threats from soil erosion, however, it is recognised that global food production must increase by 70% to feed the projected growth of the world’s population (from 7 to 9 billion by 2050). Extreme climatic conditions may become more frequent with changing global climate and this demands ‘win-win’ systems of soil conservation which permit enhancement of land productivity while protecting ecosystem services in the wider river basin.
We invite contributions that explore all aspects of soil erosion, sedimentation and the water-food-energy security nexus particularly in the context of:
• Planning and evaluation of soil conservation strategies for mitigating on- and off-site impacts (both natural and social science perspectives welcome)
• Impacts of agriculture on river basin ecosystem services
• Multi-scale studies exploring linkages between agricultural soil and water management
• Quantification of downstream agricultural pollution in water supply catchments
• Studies evaluating agricultural soil erosion and siltation impacts on HEP generation
• Demonstration datasets of new technologies and approaches to evaluate the position of soil erosion within the water-food-energy-security nexus