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Soil Erosion Examples and How Erosion is Reduced

Conservation Problems

In just one rainstorm, enough topsoil that took nature hundreds of years to build could be washed away and end up in our rivers and lakes.

Helping farmers and land owners protect soil from erosion is part of NRCS's mission.   Why?

  • Our soil is vital to our environment and our own existence.   
  • Not only does soil erosion pose a threat to our water quality, but also threatens our nations' ability to grow our food, support our wildlife, plants, and keep the environment clean.

Soil Erosion That Could Have Been Prevented

Photo of hat in a gulley caused by erosion.

Photo of NRCS Conservationist standing in a ditch.

A hat lying in a gully caused by heavy rain.  Waterways and conservation tillage are just a couple ways to help reduce this type of erosion.  How could this have been prevented?

 

An NRCS Conservationist standing in a ditch at the bottom of highly erodible land which is not protected by  conservation practices.  How could this have been prevented?

 

Photo of NRCS truck next to a gulley caused by rain erosion.

Photo of soil washed down.

An NRCS truck is parked along side a gully caused by rainfall on land where soybeans were grown.  This type of erosion is called "ephemeral" erosion.  How could this have been prevented?
 
Soil washed down this hill during a large rainstorm.  This erosion could have been reduced with grassed waterways.  How could this have been prevented?

Photo of soil washed onto a road.

Photo of ephemeral erosion on soybean fields.

Soil washed across this country road during a rainstorm.  How could this have been prevented? This soybean field was severely eroded during a heavy rainfall.  This is another example of ephemeral erosion due to inadequate cropland conservation practices.  How could this have been prevented?

 

NRCS planning helps reduce erosion

See real-life examples of NRCS conservation systems at work to reduce or prevent soil erosion.