Multi-temporal analysis of sediment yield caused by hydric erosion in a basin of the Anoia-Penedès vineyard region (NE Spain)

J. A. Martínez-Casasnovas, M. Guevara Bonilla, M. C. Ramos


The aim of the present work was to analyse the multitemporal variability of sediment yield in an agro-forestry system of the Penedès region (NE Spain). In this area high erodible soil parent materials, frequent high intensity rainfall, as well as other external factor such as land use management changes and abandonment of traditional soil conservation measures, favor erosion processes. The Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) was used to estimate runoff and soil erosion at basin scale during the decade 2001-2010, using detailed soil, land use and relief data. Important differences of runoff and sediment yield along the analyzed years were found. Forest and natural vegetated areas were the responsible for 48.8% of the sediments exported from the basin, being 82.0% of these sediments generated in the bare gully sidewalls of these areas. Agricultural lands produced the rest 51.2% of the total soil losses. In these lands, particularly in vineyards, traditional agricultural practices were removed during past land transformations and the soil is maintained bare most of the year. The selected decade (2001-2010) represent an example of the situation that more and more frequently are observed in the area under the climate change conditions.


Soil erosion; Mediterranean region; agro-forestry system; SWAT

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