Long term variation in rainfall erosivity in Uruguay: a preliminary Fournier approach
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- Munka, C., Cruz, G. & Caffera, R.M. GeoJournal (2007) 70: 257. doi:10.1007/s10708-008-9139-7
In order to explore the consequences of precipitation increase on soil erosion in Uruguay, the monthly Fournier Index (FI) and the annual Modified Fournier Index (MFI) were developed as a preliminary approach, covering consecutive decadal periods from 1931 to 2000. Rainfall data were used from 13 stations distributed all over the country. MFI shows a decrease in the 1940s, an increase during the 1950s, then a little decrease during the 1960s and 1970s and an increase in the 1980s, remaining near these last values during the 1990s. FI behavior in July and October in the last two decades shows a decrease in the Northeast region of the country—the region with highest annual precipitation—and a slight increase over the Southeast—the region with the lowest annual precipitation and the only region with a winter rainfall maximum. For the core months of winter and early spring there is a decline in erosivity in the Northeast, but an increase in the Southeast. January shows erosivity decreasing in the South during the last two decades. In April there is a peak in precipitation variability all across the country. FI shows an early increase during the 1940s in the Northwest, and generally very low values during the 1970s, with the return of high values in the 1990s, especially in the Northern corner. Results pose a challenge in order to improve research on the erosion problem, since the main source of freshwater nationwide remains surface river flow, which is prone to higher turbidity problems in areas of high soil erosion.