soil destruction

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  • OVERGRAZING
  • DEFORESTATION
  • USE OF AGROCHEMICALS
  • Overgrazing can reduce ground cover, enabling erosion and compaction of the land by wind and rain.. This reduces the ability for plants to grow and water to penetrate, which harms soil microbes and results in serious erosion of the land.
  • Construction and Development
  • As land loses its fertile soil, agricultural producers move on, clear more forest and continue the cycle of soil loss.
  • Mining
  • Scientists have found that overuse of some of these chemicals changes soil composition and disrupts the balance of microorganisms in the soil. This stimulates the growth of harmful bacteria at the expense of beneficial kinds.
  • Desertification
  • The soil that is washed or blown away ends up in nearby low lying areas, in rivers and streams, or in downstream lakes or reservoirs.
  • The digging of strip mines involves the removal of plants and soil. By exposing rocks and minerals to the air and to rainwater, these forms of mining speed up the rate of chemical weathering.
  • Unprotected, dry soil surfaces blow away with the wind or are washed away by flash floods, leaving infertile lower soil layers that bake in the sun and become an unproductive hardpan.
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