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Water Erosion and Sedimentation

Wind Erosion

Soil erosion involves the breakdown, detachment, transport, and redistribution of soil particles by forces of water, wind, or gravity.  Soil erosion on cropland is of particular interest because of its on-site impacts on soil quality and crop productivity, and its off-site impacts on water quantity and quality, air quality, and biological activity.

The economic impact of mitigating soil erosion significantly burdens the agri-business sector and the Nation as a whole.  Dust contributions to the atmosphere and delivery of sediment, nutrients, and chemicals to water resources are primary environmental concerns addressed by public policy makers and the stewards of our working lands.  Understanding and managing these processes has important long term implications for cropland sustainability, natural resource condition and health, and environmental quality.

The NRCS has erosion prediction tools and conservation practices that contain the technologies to assist land users to plan and implement conservation systems to address soil erosion.


The current NRCS water erosion technology utilizes the Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation, Version 2 (RUSLE2).

The current NRCS wind erosion technology utilizes the Wind Erosion Prediction System (WEPS).