Journal of Arid Land

Article Title

Changes in sediment discharge in a sediment-rich region of the Yellow River from 1955 to 2010: implications for further soil erosion control


The well-documented decrease in the discharge of sediment into the Yellow River has attracted considerable attention in recent years. The present study analyzed the spatial and temporal variation of sediment yield based on data from 46 hydrological stations in the sediment-rich region of the Yellow River from 1955 to 2010. The results showed that since 1970 sediment yield in the region has clearly decreased at different rates in the 45 sub-areas controlled by hydrological stations. The decrease in sediment yield was closely related to the intensity and extent of soil erosion control measures and rainstorms that occurred in different periods and sub-areas. The average sediment delivery modulus (SDM) in the study area decreased from 7,767.4 t/(km2•a) in 1951–1969 to 980.5 t/(km2•a) in 2000–2010. Our study suggested that 65.5% of the study area with the SDM below 1,000 t/(km2•a) is still necessary to control soil deterioration caused by erosion, and soil erosion control measures should be further strengthened in the areas with the SDM above 1,000 t/(km2•a).


sediment delivery modulus (SDM); Yellow River; hydrological station(s)-controlled sub-area; soil and water conservation

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