Erosion Control and Soil Quality

  • Humberto Blanco-Canqui
  • Rattan Lal


Soil is a living, complex, and three-dimensional body, which undergoes continuous and dynamic changes. Rapid changes in energy fluxes and organic matter decomposition reflect the dynamic nature of the soil. The need for a greater understanding of implications of different land use and management scenarios on soil function resulted in the emergence of a conceptual paradigm in late 1970’s known as soil quality (Warkentin and Fletcher, 1977). This concept has received greater attention since 1990’s (Karlen et al., 1990; Larson and Pierce, 1991). It stemmed from an innovative perspective that attempts to define how a soil functions and what measures or management practices maintain and improve a soil for a specific use. Soil quality concept has attained importance for merging traditional concepts of soil taxonomy with management and conservation to address growing concerns about the depletion of natural resources, non-point source pollution, and the projected global climate change. Present and future needs of food production and environmental protection depend on how the soil responds to external and internal stresses. Soil attributes in interaction with science-based agricultural inputs determine soil productivity. Introduction of soil quality concept represents an innovative paradigm in soil science research.


Soil Property Soil Quality Organic Matter Concentration Earthworm Population Soil Quality Index 
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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Humberto Blanco-Canqui
    • 1
  • Rattan Lal
    • 1
  1. 1.Ohio State UniversityColumbusUSA

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