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Soil Erosion Modelling for Sustainable Environmental Management in Sebeya Catchment, Rwanda

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Document pages: 19 pages

Abstract: Soil erosion models can be understood as a virtual laboratory that brings together data, observations and knowledge from different fields for sustainable environmental management. The present study was carried out on Sebeya catchment which is located in the Western Province of Rwanda. The main objective of this study was to develop a Universal Soil Loss Equation type of erosion model to be used in predicting soil loss and associated crop yields for sustainable agriculture management in Sebeya catchment at the level of parcels. USLE parameters were determined on each parcel in Sebeya catchment using map overlapping techniques as applied in Geographical Information System (GIS). Applying a combination of 0, 1, 2 and 3 soil erosion control measures on each of 259,673 parcels, the simulated annual soil loss for Sebeya catchment was 849.94; 143.27; 88.64 and 28.59 t ha yr respectively. Soil Loss and Crop Yield (SOLCY) model has been developed to predict soil loss and crop yields for each main cultivated crop in Sebeya catchment. A combination of 3 soil erosion control measures such as (bench terrace + mulching + drainage channels) has been found to be the most effective in reducing soil erosion on each parcel with slope range of (16 - 60) . Farmers and agriculture technicians can use SOLCY model. Finally, researchers should develop similar models on other catchments based on SOLCY model design concept.

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