Understanding Soil Degradation and Desertification

Salinization and Leaching

Salinization: salt is drawn upwards from deep layers of soil, creating a thin layer of salt on top of the soil. Leaching: substances such as minerals, nutrients, or contaminants are washed out or carried away from the topsoil.

Soil Composition

Tri├íngulo 50 Clay 30 Silt 20 Sand (LOAM): What’s the balance of clay, silt, and sand for loam? Primary Productivity: The capacity of soil to supply nutrients and water for plant growth.

Impact of Deforestation

How does cutting down trees contribute to desertification and soil degradation? Trees help prevent soil erosion by holding the soil together with their roots. Removal of trees makes soil vulnerable to erosion, leading to desertification.

Soil Formation

Weathering processes, wind erosion, water erosion contribute to soil formation. Soil is composed of minerals, water, organic material, and microorganisms.

Soil Structure

Components: Rock particles, humus, water, air, living organisms. Different horizons like O, A, E, B, C, and R contribute to soil structure.

Soil Properties

Silt: Improves water holding and consistency. Porosity: Amount of space between particles. Permeability: Ease at which gases and liquids pass through soil.

Agricultural Practices

Subsistence agriculture, commercial agriculture, cash cropping, extensive farming, intensive farming, irrigation, terrestrial and pastoral farming, arable farming, malnutrition, and nutrient types.

Green Revolution and Food Supply

The Green Revolution increased food production through pesticides, irrigation, and improved agriculture. Predictions for future food supply include increased meat consumption and the need for additional cereals.

Factors of Soil Degradation

Erosion, overgrazing, overcropping, deforestation, unsustainable agricultural techniques, and urbanization contribute to soil degradation.

Atmospheric System

Layers like troposphere, stratosphere, mesosphere, thermosphere, and exosphere. Greenhouse effect, greenhouse gases, and the ozone layer are essential components of the atmospheric system.