Area Affected by Erosion

Indicator Phrasing

number of hectares of agriculture land in the project target area affected by severe surface erosion

Indicator Phrasing

INDICATOR PHRASING: number of hectares of agriculture land in the project target area affected by severe surface erosion

What is its purpose?

The indicator quantifies the total area of the targeted agricultural land that is affected by severe surface erosion. When using the indicator, focus only on those productive agricultural lands (fields, pastures and forests) where recent farming practices caused surface erosion (which your intervention aimed to reduce). When choosing this indicator, be aware that reducing surface erosion is a long-term process taking anything from 4 to 12 or more

How to Collect and Analyse the Required Data

Determine the indicator's value by using the following methodology:


1) In cooperation with local extension workers, farmers and relevant authorities, define what criteria need to be met for each type of land (fields, pastures, forests) to be classified as “affected by severe surface erosion” (for example, the number and total length of erosion rills per m2). For each type of land, prepare observation checklists listing the main criteria.


2) Together with local farmers, the data collectors should conduct transect walks in the area you are assessing. For each area which meets the predefined criteria (i.e. are affected by severe surface erosion), the data collector should measure its size (in hectares). The measurement should be conducted by walking along the border of the areas with a GPS device, having activated the area measurement function.


3) Calculate the indicator’s value by summing up the size of all the areas affected by severe surface erosion. Report the value in hectares, not other units.

Important Comments

1) Since the data collection is time consuming, the indicator is suitable only for interventions covering small to medium-sized areas where the measurement of affected areas is feasible.


2) When considering the timing of the survey, take into account the physical accessibility of the area and the cropping practices. Conduct the survey at a time when erosion is most clearly visible (for example, not in the pre-harvest period when crops cover the land).


This guidance was prepared by Tearfund ©

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