How Does Erosion Effect Humans?

Damian Davies/Photographer’s Choice/Getty Images

Erosion effects humans by adding additional toxic organic chemicals and heavy metals to the soil as well as eroding land so that there is less land to farm on. Humans are accelerating the rate of erosion.

Erosion used to only occur through natural erosion, which is caused by the planet. However, now there is human-induced erosion that occurs in lower elevations. Human-induced erosion is primarily caused by farming, construction and mining whereas natural erosion occurs at the highest elevation levels and is typically caused by earth, wind, water and glaciers.

It is predicted that with the continuing growth of the human population and the continuing soil loss from erosion that humans will face serious challenges meeting food needs. The global cropland has increased by 11 percent since 1961, but the global population had nearly doubled. While erosion on its own might not be considered a crisis and might be considered more of a change, with less land to grow food on and a growing population, it has become a serious problem. Researchers have found that the United States erosion rates are unsustainable and that the erosion rates in Africa, Southeast Asia and Latin America are in even worse shape. A solution to the erosion problem has not been found.