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Vegetated earth-banked terraces

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WOCAT

Earth-banked terraces are constructed by carefully removing a superficial soil layer from one part of a field, concentrating it on the lower end of that field in order to reduce slope gradient and length. Another terrace is created directly downslope to form a cascade of terraces. The earth-banked terraces reduce flooding, damage to infrastructure and siltation of water reservoirs, while maintaining (or slightly increasing) crop productivity. This is achieved by reducing runoff, soil erosion and hydraulic connectivity through a decreased slope gradient and increased vegetation cover.

The use of stones from the fields to reinforce the terraces is optional, but facilitates crop production in the fields and makes the ridges more resistant to higher runoff velocities. The technology requires an initial investment in the construction of the terraces.

Vegetated earth-banked terraces