If the tectonic action causes part of the Earth's surface (e.g., a mountain range) to be raised or lowered relative to surrounding areas, this must necessarily change the gradient of the land surface. Longer, steeper slopes (especially those without adequate vegetative cover) are more susceptible to very high rates of erosion during heavy rains than shorter, less steep slopes. Weathering often leads to erosion, breaking down the rock into small pieces that are easier for wind and water to carry away. erosion noun [U] (NEGATIVE EFFECT) C2 the fact of a good quality or situation being gradually lost or destroyed: The survey reveals a gradual erosion of the president's popularity and support. Chemical erosion occurs primarily when material is dissolved and transported by water. [20], Valley or stream erosion occurs with continued water flow along a linear feature. But anyone who has ever seen a picture of the Grand Canyon knows that nothing beats the slow steady movement of water when it comes to changing the Earth. Eroded sedimentor solutes may be tr… Water ErosionWater erosion, the most complex form, encompasses rain splash, unconcentrated surface erosion by sheetwash or rill wash, channel erosion in rivers or in gullies flowing only during storms, erosion by water flowing through surface materials, and erosion in the shallow zone of lakes and oceans by tides, currents and wave action. Rapid river channel migration observed in the Lena River of Siberia is due to thermal erosion, as these portions of the banks are composed of permafrost-cemented non-cohesive materials. It results in the progressive down-slope movement of soil, causing severe soil loss on upper-slope positions and accumulation in lower-slope positions. Erosion should not be confused with weathering. In splash erosion, the impact of a falling raindrop creates a small crater in the soil,[14] ejecting soil particles. Studies of these sediments indicate that it is likely that the erosion of the orogen began in the Cambrian and then intensified in the Ordovician. Any perceptible down-slope movement of rock or sediment is often referred to in general terms as a landslide. [33], Glaciers can also cause pieces of bedrock to crack off in the process of plucking. It is also a major source of land degradation, evaporation, desertification, harmful airborne dust, and crop damage—especially after being increased far above natural rates by human activities such as deforestation, urbanization, and agriculture. A similar process, weathering, breaks down or dissolve s rock, but does not involve movement. [47][48], Mass movement is an important part of the erosional process and is often the first stage in the breakdown and transport of weathered materials in mountainous areas. The most severe wind erosion recorded in Canada occurred in the southern Prairies during the prolonged DROUGHT of the 1930s. Published: 10 th February, 2017. Though the glacier continues to incise vertically, the shape of the channel beneath the ice eventually remain constant, reaching a U-shaped parabolic steady-state shape as we now see in glaciated valleys. Because erosion rates are almost always sensitive to the local slope (see above), this will change the rates of erosion in the uplifted area. The loose and dissolved materials move from one location to another. Most commonly its effects are hidden, but up to 70% of the load carried by many rivers is in solution. Wind erosion requires strong winds, particularly during times of drought when vegetation is sparse and soil is dry (and so is more erodible). 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