PESERA results (2)

PESERA-RDI_GRID coarse scale model

The PESERA-RDI_GRID coarse scale model is a physically-based model that estimates potential monthly erosion at a 1km grid resolution. PESERA predicts runoff with a daily time-step that is predicted from daily rainfall volumes, soil storage capacity, and vegetation interception. The model estimates ground cover, surface crusting, runoff and sediment transport, to give an estimate of water and sediment delivered to stream channels. The emphasis of the PESERA-RDI_GRID model is the prediction of hill-slope erosion, and the delivery of erosion products to the base of each hill-slope. Channel delivery processes and channel routing are explicitly not considered. More details on the model are provided on the PESERA webpages (PESERA model concepts, Kirkby, 2001), Irvine and Kirkby (2003) and Gobin and Govers (2003). See figure PESERA-RDI_GRID for an illustration of data flow.

The PESERA -RDI_GRID coarse scale model was run for the dominant Arable Crop (Actual PESERA runs), and all arable land under maize as a worst case scenario. See figure for dominant land use of the window areas. The data layers on actual and potential land use were produced by Gobin (2003).

Results South of Spain and Portugal window

The projected increase in winter rains in the HADRM3-A2B scenario for 2071-2080, does not lead to an increase in predicted erosion, on the contrary, erosion rates decline spectacularly. Only summer (July-August) shows increases in erosion rates. This is mainly a change of erosion pattern, or more an increase in the area for which erosion (risk) is predicted. Some areas have a an increase (relative to zero) of 100%, but at the absolute scale scenario erosion rates are low (0.5-1 t.ha-1).

See seasonal erosion risk for actual conditions for the South window, dominant land use (Source: Mantel et al., 2003):

See seasonal erosion risk change for A2b scenario (2073 relative to actual climate), for the South window under dominant land use (Source: Mantel et al., 2003):

Results Belgium and northern France window

The enhanced difference in erosion risk between summer and winter for the scenario runs follows the pattern of the expected change in rainfall for this window, with an increase in autumn and winter and a clear decrease in summer months. However, more detailed spatial variations are not explained by differences in rainfall and only to some extent by topography and/or land use. The difference between actual erosion under dominant crop or maize and the different years in scenario A2b show a strong relative decrease of erosion in spring and summer for the scenario in almost all years and a mixed picture in autumn and winter.

See seasonal erosion risk for actual conditions for the North window, dominant land use (Source: Mantel et al., 2003):

See seasonal erosion risk change for A2b scenario (2073 relative to actual climate), for the North window for dominant land use (Source: Mantel et al., 2003):


  • Gobin, A. and Govers, G.e., 2003. Pan--European Soil Erosion Risk Assessment. Third Annual Report. EU Fifth Framework Programme. Project no. QLK5-CT-1999-01323. Available at: 
  • Gobin, A., 2003. Agricultural Parameters for the PESERA model at the European scale. PESERA working paper, Laboratory for experimental Geomorphology, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Leuven.
  • IPCC, 1997. The Regional Impacts of Climate Change: An Assessment of Vulnerability. A Special Report of IPCC Working group II.
  • IPCC, Watson, R.T., Zinyowera, M.C. and Moss, R.H.E. (eds.). Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, pp. 527 pp. IPCC, 2000. Special Report on Emissions Scenarios, UNEP-WMO.
  • Irvine, B. and Kirkby, M., 2003. Mapping of European Soil Erosion: The PESERA- RDI model, 7th International Conference on GeoComputation, 8 - 10 September 2003, University of Southampton, United Kingdom.
  • LINK, 2003. The Climate Impacts LINK Project: Pioneering Climate Data Provision. Climate Data for the International Climate Change Research Community since 1991.
  • Mantel, S., Van Lynden, G.J. and Huting, J., 2003. PESERA, Work package 6: Scenario analysis. Final report: April 2003 - September 2003, ISRIC - World Soil Information, Wageningen.