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Sediment production simulation in catchments according to forest restoration scenarios

Grant number: 07/07413-8
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): March 01, 2008
Effective date (End): February 28, 2009
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Forestry Resources and Forestry Engineering - Nature Conservation
Principal researcher:Silvio Frosini de Barros Ferraz
Grantee:Matheus Fernando Pereira
Home Institution: Instituto de Biociências (IB). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Rio Claro. Rio Claro , SP, Brazil

Abstract

Environmental changes by human poses several environmental problems, among them, soil erosion process acceleration, that consists in the detachment and drag of particles, like sand, clay, oxids and humus, lower areas in the terrain, by natural agents, such as wind and rain, accelerating the natural resources degradation, mainly water and soil. It is important to point out that erosion is a natural process and important for relief formations existing, meanwhile, on soils covered by forests, it presents very low rates. However, the human activities can accelerate it radically, mainly by the removal of original vegetation and inadequate soil management. This project aims to conduct a simulation of erosive process in cathments of Corumbataí river basin, according to differents scenarios, such as the Permanent Protection Areas implementation and the Legal Reserve establishment, required under the existing Brazilian environmental law. For these simultions, will be held the topographyc maps and the aerial photographs digitalization, using the software ArcGIS 9.2. Then, a map will be drawn up for each factor of the Universal Soil Loss Equation, through which one can determine the annual loss of soil for a given region. Different scenarios will be simulated, including Permanent Protection Areas implementation, the Legal Reserve establishment, and the reforestation of hydrologically sensitive areas, considered more sensitive, and the current situation, without any change. The results will be analyzed by mean test, between values of the average production of sediments for each scenario. By these simulations, it is expected to know how the proportion and the position of the forest cover in Permanent Preservation Areas influences sediment production in the region, and how the environmental legislation application implementation may reduce the sediments production and what are the areas of highest priority for reforestation.