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Universidad Complutense de Madrid (2013)

Evaluación de la erosion hídrica en parcelas experimentales en campos agrícolas de secano mediterraneo

Álcazar Torralba, María

Titre : Evaluación de la erosion hídrica en parcelas experimentales en campos agrícolas de secano mediterraneo

Auteur : Álcazar Torralba, María

Université de soutenance : Universidad Complutense de Madrid

Grade : Doctoral Tesis 2013

Soil is a natural resource non-renewable at a human temporal scale. In agricultural systems, soil conservation is especially important, as theirs productivity depends directly on the health and quality of the soils. Even more in mediterranean extensive agricultural landscapes, where productivity is very limited by climate conditions. The Mediterranean region is particularly prone to erosion and soil degradation due to a combination of physics and environmental factors. Because of this combination, there are many differences between erosion processes in the Mediterranean region and in other agricultural areas typical of humid and wet climates. Spain is the European Mediterranean country with the highest rates of current and potential erosion. In most of the spanish territory, soil erosion represents a serious threat to the sustainability of agroecosystems and the socioeconomic system. However, despite the relevance of the erosion problem, there is a significant lack of knowledge about erosion processes in mediterranean agricultural landscapes, as well as a remarkable lack of field-data to allow to quantify soil loss occurring in different agricultural situations in this characteristic climate conditions. Rainfed herbaceous crops represent 41% of the total area used for agriculture in Spain. Therefore, they have great importance from the point of view of erosion and soil conservation. Also, the study "Erosive states maps" (“Mapas de estados erosivos”) carried out by the ICONA in 1991, reported that the 38% of the total soil loss from water erosion in the country is caused by this type of crop. The erosion problem in Mediterranean agricultural areas has also been recognized by the different local, national and European Administrations. In fact, the Common Agricultural Policy of the European Union (CAP) includes from the middle of the 90s land conservation among its key objectives, and the consecutive regulations developed have been introducing measures to combat erosion and to promote the use of managements and agricultural practices which contribute to soil conservation. The overall thesis objective is to assess the effects of different agricultural management systems, including conventional management systems characteristics of mediterranean rainfed areas and other management promoted by the CAP, in relation to their hydrological and erosive responses in environmental conditions of the Mediterranean central Spain. In order to do this, runoff coefficients and erosion rates recorded in USLE type plots and microplots installed in the ‘experimental field station about agricultural soil erosion’ of La Higueruela (Toledo) for the agricultural years 1993/94 to 2010/11 are presented and discussed, as well as the characteristics of rainfall and its erosivity during the same period. Is important to note that the field work have supposed a considerable part of the effort made in this thesis, because all tasks related to the maintenance of the experimental field station have been carried out by its author from September 2007 to the present...


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