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Competency Area 5: Soil conservation AEM

PO 47. Understand the basic approaches to structural soil conservation practices.

  1. Filter strips
  2. Grassed waterways
  3. Diversions
  4. Ponds
  5. Terraces
  6. Drop structures


Diversions are cross-slope channels used to intercept surface runoff and divert it to a safe or convenient discharge point. They are usually placed above the area to be protected and are permanently vegetated with grass. They are often used on steeper slopes where a terrace would be too expensive or difficult to build, maintain, or farm. They can also be used to protect barnyards or farmsteads from runoff. 


Diversion terrace

Photo courtesy of NRCS 


Ponds can act as sedimentation basins. Surface (open tile) inlets allow movement of surface runoff water into underground tile drains and safely direct discharge into surface waters. WASCOBs (water and sediment control basins) are short earthen dams built across a drainage way that trap sediment and water.


Conservation pond

Photo courtesy of NRCS