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Soil Conservation in the British Colonial Empire

Nature volume 155, pages 3940 (13 January 1945) | Download Citation



A RECENTLY published article, "Soil Erosion and Soil Conservation in the Colonial Empire", by H. A. Tempany, G. M. Roddan and L. Lord (Emp. J. Exp, Agric, 12, 121; 1944), brings the story of soil conservation in the British Colonies up to date. Much of the story is by now well known, and should be still better known, for it concerns closely the future welfare and sometimes the very existence of British Colonial territories. The menace of soil erosion has perhaps been somewhat exaggerated in the past; if so, it has been done with good reason, for the action necessary to remove the menace has only been taken after the people and more particularly the government authorities in London and the Colonies were thoroughly aroused by fear of catastrophe. Soil erosion is still prevalent and increasing throughout Africa, Ceylon, the West Indies and the Mediterranean Dependencies, but the fear of it seems to be abating. It has been shown that erosion can be controlled by apparently simple measures. As yet there are few areas where it has been completely controlled, but the knowledge that it can be has engendered confidence that it will be, and there is a tendency now to play down the menace, which in fact is neither greater nor less than it was.

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