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Agriculture 2013, 3(3), 443-463; doi:10.3390/agriculture3030443

Soil Erosion Threatens Food Production

*  and
College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853, USA
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 14 June 2013 / Revised: 20 July 2013 / Accepted: 23 July 2013 / Published: 8 August 2013
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Since humans worldwide obtain more than 99.7% of their food (calories) from the land and less than 0.3% from the oceans and aquatic ecosystems, preserving cropland and maintaining soil fertility should be of the highest importance to human welfare. Soil erosion is one of the most serious threats facing world food production. Each year about 10 million ha of cropland are lost due to soil erosion, thus reducing the cropland available for world food production. The loss of cropland is a serious problem because the World Health Organization and the Food and Agricultural Organization report that two-thirds of the world population is malnourished. Overall, soil is being lost from agricultural areas 10 to 40 times faster than the rate of soil formation imperiling humanity’s food security.
Keywords: soil erosion; malnutrition; cropland; rangeland; pasture; soil organic matter; assessment soil erosion; malnutrition; cropland; rangeland; pasture; soil organic matter; assessment
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Pimentel, D.; Burgess, M. Soil Erosion Threatens Food Production. Agriculture 2013, 3, 443-463.

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