Soil erosion and deforestation both are challenges and issues for development in India-illustrated with examples.

 Question.

Soil erosion and deforestation both are challenges and issues for development in India-illustrated with examples.  ( UPPSC, 2020, 10 Marks)

Answer.

The destruction of the upper part of the soil is called soil erosion. Soil erosion leads to loss of organic matter in the soil and consequently, it decreases fertility. Deforestation is a major cause of soil erosion because plants bind the soil with roots which prevents erosion. Soil erosion is more in hilly areas because deforestation is more in hilly areas.

Both soil erosion and deforestation are challenges and issues for development in India as follows:

  • Soil erosion is a serious cause of soil degradation and reduction in agricultural productivity.
  • Deforestation causes loosening of soil and soil erosion, eroded soil drains into the river, which reduces the water carrying capacity of the river, resulting in frequent floods and hindering the development of the country. Causes are made.
  • According to the report of the National Center for Coastal Research, one-third of the Indian coastline has been lost due to intense soil erosion in the last 26 years.
  • West Bengal has recorded the highest number of beaches
  • 30% of India's land is degraded and mostly due to soil erosion and deforestation.
  • India has lost about 38 thousand hectares of tropical rainforest between 2019 and 2020.
  • In recent years, Kerala has suffered heavy losses due to floods caused by erosion and deforestation in the Western Ghats.
  • No proper survey has been done to know and prevent soil erosion at the national level.

Ways to tackle soil erosion and deforestation:

  • Need for National Soil Conservation Policy
  • limit deforestation
  • Land with a gradient of a slope of 15 to 25 should not be used for cultivation.
  • Terraced farming should be done in hilly areas.
  • Educating the village about the negative consequences of overgrazing and shifting cultivation.
  • Contour binding and relay cropping should be adopted to measure soil erosion.

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