Impacts of soil and water conservation on crop yield, soil properties, water resources, and carbon sequestration: A review
Abstract, Academic Journals, 2018
This paper reviews the impact of soil and water conservation (SWC) measures on crop yield, soil properties, water resources and carbon sequestration. Land degradation due to soil erosion in Ethiopia is too severe which affects the livelihood of a community and ecosystem functions. The dry and highland part of the country was identified as seriously vulnerable to land degradation because of soil erosion. And, soil erosion can be limited with proper land management. Ethiopia started construction of SWC on cultivated land nearly 40 years ago. However, the efficiency of structures showed mixed results that are influenced by the type of measures and the agro-ecology. The physical SWC measures in Ethiopia were most widely applied throughout the country. However, the rate of adoption was considerably low due to space competition, inhibition to farming activity, water logging, weed, and rodent problems, topdown approach, and huge maintenance requirement. Majority of studies showed that crop yield on conserved dry land was increased significantly and the economic evaluation also showed positive increment with conservation. In addition, SWC resulted in positive relationship with soil quality improvement and enhancement of water resources. Moreover, SWC measures enhanced carbon sequestration of the soil due to improvement of soil fertility status.
Key words: Carbon sequestration, crop yield, land management, soil bunds, soil erosion.