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Modeling of the spatial and temporal dynamics of erosivity in the Amazon


Precipitation is one of the main factors of soil erosion, and the intensity, duration and frequency of precipitation can aggravate the erosive process. The objective of the study was to determine the spatial and temporal distribution of rainfall erosivity in the Amazon. Data were collected from 334 rainfall gauge stations distributed throughout the region, composing a series of 20 years (1997–2016). The gaps in this series were filled with satellite data using the CPC MORPHing technique. The erosivity equations used were those available in the literature and based on the modified Fournier index. The values of precipitation and erosivity were interpolated using GIS software, and thematic maps were generated for these variables. The annual value of rainfall erosivity ranged from 7060 to 36767 (Mj mm ha−1 h−1 year−1). On the monthly scale, the highest rates of erosivity were recorded in the rainy season, i.e., February and March, at approximately 1548 and 2651 (Mj mm ha−1 h−1 month−1), respectively. In the context of erosion risk, the region was classified as having very strong erosivity. Therefore, it is imperative that land management and conservation policies be implemented to minimize erosion in the region, which, at its borders, undergoes intense land use change, i.e., forests are being transformed into pastures and grain crops.

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Source: INMET (2019)

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Source: Adapted Silva (2004)

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The authors would like to thank the Coordination for the Improvement of Higher Education Personnel- Brazil (CAPES) - Finance Code 001 and Amazon Foundation for Studies and Research Support (FAPESPA). The second author would like to thank the CNPq for funding a research productivity Grant (Process 303542/2018-7). We would like to thank the office for research (PROPESP) and the Foundation for Research Development (FADESP) of the Federal University of Pará through Grant No. PAPQ 2019.

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Correspondence to Claudio José Cavalcante Blanco.

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dos Santos Silva, D.S., Blanco, C.J.C., dos Santos Junior, C.S. et al. Modeling of the spatial and temporal dynamics of erosivity in the Amazon. Model. Earth Syst. Environ. 6, 513–523 (2020).

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  • Rainfall erosivity
  • Soil erosion
  • Modified Fournier index (MFI)
  • Amazon