Soil erosion measurement using fallout Cesium 137 technique in Sidi Salah Basin (Eastern Central Tunisia)

Azaiez, Naima (2020) Soil erosion measurement using fallout Cesium 137 technique in Sidi Salah Basin (Eastern Central Tunisia). GeoProgress Journal, 7 (1). pp. 11-35. ISSN 2384-9398

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According to FAO, Tunisia is classified among the countries worst hit by different processes of soil degradation, particularly the semi-arid domain, making the example of an ecosystem with increased steppization. Climatic deterioration and inadequate reckless human intervention have led to a deterioration of edaphic factors accompanied by a progressive invasion by steppe facies at the expense of a previously dense and stable forest. This change in landscape has exposed the domain to a severe erosive manifestation and has attracted the attention of many researchers on the problem of water erosion which has been weighing heavily on rural communities for decades. Efforts aimed at estimating soil losses have been made worldwide to choose adequate ways of intervention and deal with this significant degradation. Different empirical models have been established, tested and compared to have a quantitative estimation of this degradation (Tamura, 1964; Rogowski and Tamura, 1970 a and b; Kachanoski et al., 1984, 1987 and 1993; Mabit et al., 1999, 2002, 2008 and 2013; Moukhchane, 2008; Felah 2010; Azaiez, 2016 and 2020 and Akwasi et al., 2020). In this context, it was proposed to quantify soil losses in a test watershed through the Cesium 137 method known for its preferential absorption by the soil’s fine particles and its high sensitivity to mechanical erosion. To do this, a representative transect has been selected in a small basin of 2.3 km2 in area, that of wadi Sidi Salah located on the semi-arid margins of the Eastern tell. Seven samples have been taken along the transect oriented by the soil loss map issued from the application of the USLE equation, allowing to integrate as many compartments subject to various erosive factors and processes as possible. The results of the modeling of soil loss through the Cesium 137 technique have shown a significant specific loss of 32.5 t / ha / year but one which is variable between the different compartments of the basin.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: 900 Storia, Geografia e discipline ausiliarie
Depositing User: Albanese Stefania
Date Deposited: 09 Dec 2021 14:33
Last Modified: 09 Dec 2021 14:33

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