Rural roads and trails as a source of sediment: Preliminary results from the Alegre watershed in Eastern Brazil
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Extensive networks of unpaved roads and trails often exist in rural areas. These particular routes of transportation can be significant sources of sediment in a tropical watershed. Past research has offered little insight on comparisons between erosion prediction models. The purpose of this preliminary assessment was to offer a comparison between seven erosion prediction models (KINEROS2, SEDD model, WARSEM, ROADMOD, STJ-EROS, WEPP, and SEDMODL) in order to determine their suitability for assessment of an Eastern Brazil tropical watershed. The seven models were evaluated based upon ease of use, considerations of erodible features and processes, data requirements, temporal and spatial scales, ability to simulate management practices, level of output, and applicability to tropical environments. This comparison also employed a 13 km2 mixed land use watershed as a case study. Three models (SEDMODL, STJ-EROS, and WEPP) were selected for future application to the erosion analysis of the Alegre watershed and will be compared to field observations in order to identify roads of high erosion potential and true applicability to this particular watershed.