Spatial and Temporal Responses of Soil Erosion to Climate Change Impacts in a Transnational Watershed in Southeast Asia
It has been widely predicted that Southeast Asia is among the regions facing the most severe climate change impacts. Despite this forecast, little research has been published on the potential impacts of climate change on soil erosion in this region. This study focused on the impact of climate change on spatial and temporal patterns of soil erosion in the Laos-Vietnam transnational Upper Ca River Watershed. The Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT) coupled with downscaled global climate models
... al climate models (GCMs) was employed for simulation. Soil erosion in the watershed was mostly found as "hill-slope erosion", which occurred seriously in the upstream area where topography is dominated by numerous steep hills with sparse vegetation cover. However, under the impact of climate change, it is very likely that soil erosion rate in the downstream area will increase at a higher rate than in its upstream area due to a greater increase in precipitation. Seasonally, soil erosion is predicted to increase significantly in the warmer and wetter climate of the wet season, when higher erosive power of an increased amount and intensity of rainfall is accompanied by higher sediment transport capacity. The results of this study provide useful information for decision makers to plan where and when soil conservation practice should be focused.