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Universität Wien (2008)

Land use and soil quality in an arid environment (Egypt)

Purzner, Maria-Elisabeth

Titre : Land use and soil quality in an arid environment (Egypt

Auteur : Purzner, Maria-Elisabeth

Université de soutenance : Universität Wien, Fakultät für Geowissenschaften, Geographie und Astronomie, Institut für Geologische Wissenschaften

Grade : Thesis. Doctoral 2008

Cultivated soils in arid environments are threatened by degradation due to many factors : false irrigation, overfertilisation and non-sustainable practices often result in salinisation of the soils. This means that soil fertility decreases, and many inherent processes of soils that are needed for a functioning soil environment decline. If those processes aren’t ameliorated at their onset, this degradation can result in desertification, i.e. the complete loss of soils and the extension of deserts. In Egypt, these problems are intensified due to the constant population growth and the relatively small amount of arable land (<4% of the total area), which is lost due to soil degradation and urbanisation, as well as the limited amount of water. On the other hand, very ambitious land reclamation programmes have been started by the Egyptian government to increase the amount of arable land up to 25% of the total area by the year 2017. In order to assess soil quality of already existing agricultural soils, two experimental sites were chosen in Egypt : soil of two fields in the Nile Delta, which have been agriculturally used for centuries were compared to two fields in Upper Egypt that are part of a desert reclamation project in Sohag. In the Nile Delta, a cotton field was compared to a clover field (fallow crop, Trifolium alexandrinum, also called Berseem), in Sohag, a wheat field was compared to a clover field. By choosing fields with the same crops, a thorough comparison was made possible as well as the assessment of the influence of crop use on soil quality. In both sites, five samplings were performed, by taking 6 samples evenly spread across the fields, which consisted of 5 sub-samples taken from 0-25cm below surface. By combining geological as well as biological parameters, which were chosen to assess physical , chemical and biological soil conditions, a thorough analysis of soil quality in both experimental sites was conducted

Mots clés : soil degradation / desertification / egypt / soil quality analysis / land use / desert reclamation

Présentation : Österreichische Dissertationsdatenbank

Page publiée le 20 avril 2009, mise à jour le 14 mars 2019