Design of Soil and Water Conservation Structures for Smallholder Agriculture

Badly gullied semi-arid land

Badly gullied semi-arid land

Soil and Water Conservation (SWC) are activities that maintain or enhance the productive capacity
of land in areas affected by or prone to soil erosion. Soil erosion, on the other hand, is the
movement of soil from one part of the land to another through the action of wind or water (Figure
1.1). Thus, soil erosion by water is caused by raindrop impact surface sealing, and crust formation
leading to high runoff rate and amount, high runoff velocity on long and undulating slopes, and low
soil strength of structurally weak soils with high moisture content due to frequent rains. Soil erosion
by wind is caused by lack of vegetation cover, dry pulverized soils, strong wind speeds, and poor land
management practices such as continuous tillage and over-grazing.

For information: Design of Soil and water conservation structures

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