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Assessing Farmers’ Perception of Soil Erosion Risk in Northern Jordan

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DOI: 10.4236/jep.2015.68079    4,086 Downloads   4,932 Views   Citations

ABSTRACT

Socioeconomic factors and farmer’s perception of soil erosion and conservation were examined with special reference to Wadi Kufranja catchment, northern Jordan. Field data were collected through a household field survey, and soil erosion loss was calculated and mapped using the Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation (RUSLE), within a GIS/RS environment. In-situ field measurements of soil erosion were also conducted to assess splash, sheet and runoff soil erosion. The estimated potential average annual soil loss is 10 ton·ha-1 year for the watershed. 42.1% (5317. 23 ha) of the watershed area was estimated to have moderate soil loss (5 - 25 ton·ha-1·years -1). Soil erosion risk is severe to extreme over 31.2% (3940.56 ha) of the catchment, whereas the calculated soil loss is 25 - 50 and >50 ton·ha-1·year-1. The measured sheet and splash soil erosion in W. Kufranja was 10 ton·ha-1·year-1 from tillage land, and 3 ton·ha-1·year-1 from the fallow land, with an average ranges from 8 to 10 ton·ha-1·year-1. Similarly, the maximum measured soil erosion on the eastern margin of W. Kufranja was 12.7 ton·ha-1·year-1, while the minimum soil erosion was 2.9 ton·ha-1·year-1. The collected household socioeconomic/conservation data have been subjected to multivariate statistical analysis. Through factor analysis, the twenty one variables were reduced into four significant factors which account for 69.7% of the variation in the original variable. Stepwise multiple regression analysis revealed that the total variance explained by three independent variables was 0.585 (R = 0.765, R2 = 0.585). Out of the total variance, forest clearance explained 34.7%, fallow land 7.7%, and land use/land cover 16.1% respectively. The F-value for forest clearance, fallow land, and land use/land cover are significant at 0.1% level. Most of the farmers aware that poor land management, deforestation, overgrazing, traditional cultivation (cultivation up-and-down the slope, and mono-cropping), and population pressure, are the major direct and indirect causes of soil erosion. By contrast, vegetative measures (i.e., afforestation and tree planting), adoption of structural soil and water conservation measures (terraced farming, check dams and gully control), and crop system management were recommended to control soil erosion.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Cite this paper

Farhan, Y. , Zregat, D. and Anbar, A. (2015) Assessing Farmers’ Perception of Soil Erosion Risk in Northern Jordan. Journal of Environmental Protection, 6, 867-884. doi: 10.4236/jep.2015.68079.

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