International Issues

Oral

396472 - Using the APEX model to predict the effects of tillage practices on crop yield, soil erosion, and particulate nutrients in agricultural fields of Colombia

Tuesday, June 5
8:30 AM - 10:00 AM
Location: Lake Superior B

Soil erosion from agricultural land affects the water quality and environment, as well as soil fertility and agricultural production. In many areas, the economy is centered on this production; therefore, loss of fertility greatly affects the economy of communities and regions as well. In tropical areas, like the Eastern Savannahs of Colombia, the extreme climate causes the soils to be susceptible to rapidly loose fertility following erosion. Agricultural fields growing soybean, corn, and rice on rotation under three different tillage practices (e.g. conventional tillage, reduced tillage, and direct planting) were studied at the Experimental Station La Libertad (CORPOICA) in Villavicencio, Colombia. Information regarding the climate, crop yield, runoff, sedimentation, and nutrients present in the runoff and eroded materials was collected and compared to the APEX (Agricultural Policy/Environmental eXtender) model predictions. The overall ability of APEX to model runoff and soil erosion is evaluated in this study, with the nutrient enrichment of eroded material being of particular interest. Following the evaluation of soil erosion, environmental economic accounts will be evaluated to determine the economic impact of erosion and loss of soil fertility in the study area.

Laura Wilson

Graduate Research Assistant
Mississippi State University

Laura Wilson is a senior at Mississippi State University studying Civil and Environmental Engineering. She has been extrememly involved in the Engineers Without Borders chapter at MSU and has been the student leader in their water supply project in Zambia, Africa. She has also been involved in the reinstatement of the Soil and Water Conservation Society at MSU and currently serves as president. The Diamondhead, MS native hopes to pursue a career in Environmental Engineering with a focus on water supply, especially water supply and other development in developing countries.

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