More rain, less soil: long-term changes in rainfall intensity with climate change

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Burt, Tim ; Boardman, John ; Foster, Ian D L ; Howden, Nicholas (2016)
  • Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
  • Related identifiers: doi: 10.1002/esp.3868
  • Subject: erosivity | QC981.8 | soil erosion | QE570 | climate change

This commentary discusses the role of long-term climate change in driving increases in soil erosion. Assuming that land use and management remain effectively constant, we discuss changes in the ability of rainfall to cause erosion (erosivity), using long daily rainfall data sets from south east England. An upward trend in mean rainfall per rain day is detected at the century-plus time scale. Implications for soil erosion and sediment delivery are discussed and evidence from other regions reviewed. We conclude that rates of soil erosion may well increase in a warmer, wetter world.
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