• Johari A.H
  • Law P.L.
  • Taib S.N.L.
  • Yong L.K.


Soil erosion occurs on construction sites partly due to site clearing that exposes the land to the erosive power of rainfall. A proposed construction project requires the submission of an Environmental Impact Assessment EIA) to assess the impact of the project on the environment. Assessment of soil erosion is included in the EIA, but the equation to estimate soil erosion known as the Universal Soil Loss Equation (USLE) is only applicable to a soil containing up to four percent organic matter. This limitation of USLE requires an alternative that can predict soil erosion on an organic soil. This study attempts to assess erosion that occurs on an organic soil by simulated rainfall. Field soil samples were reconstructed into three shapes and exposed to simulated rainfall. Results indicate that the amount of organic soil loss decreases with increasing duration of rainfall. Particle size distribution shows that particles with sizes finer than coarse sand (1.7 mm) remained on the slopes. Equations were developed from the graphs of soil loss versus duration of simulated rainfall to estimate soil loss occurring on slopes covered by an organic soil. The outcome of this study can be a precursor to developing an equation to estimate soil erodibility of a slope overlain by an organic soil.


R. A. Persyn, T. D. Glanville, T. L. Richard, J. M. Laflen, and P. M. Dixon, "Environmental effects of applying composted organics to new highway embankments: Part 1. Interrill runoff and erosion," Trans. ASAE, vol. 47, no. 2, p. 7, 2004.

X. Z. Xu, H. W. Zhang, G. Q. Wang, S. C. Chen, and W. Q. Dang, "An experimental method to verify soil conservation by check dams on the Loess Plateau, China," Environ. Monit. Assess., vol. 159, no. 1-4, pp. 293-309, 2009.

J. Dong, K. Zhang, and Z. Guo, "Runoff and soil erosion from highway construction spoil deposits: A rainfall simulation study," Transp. Res. Part D Transp. Environ., vol. 17, no. 1, pp. 8-14, 2012.

W. H. Wischmeier and D. D. Smith, Predicting rainfall erosion losses - A Guide to Conservation Planning, no. 537. 1978.

G. S. Fifield, Field Manual on Sediment and Erosion Control Best Management Practices for Contractors and Inspectors. Santa Barbara, California, USA: Forester Press, 2001.

L. Ooshaksaraie, N. E. A. Basri, A. A. Bakar, and K. N. A. Maulud, "Erosion and sediment control plans to minimize impacts of housing construction activities on water resources in Malaysia," Eur. J. Sci. Res., vol. 33, no. 3, pp. 461-470, 2009.

I. A. R. Al-Ani, L. Mohd Sidek, M. N. Mohd Desa, and N. E.A.B., "Knowledge Based Expert System for Minimising Stormwater Erosion and Sedimentation in Malaysian Construction Sites," in Proceeding of the International Conference on Advanced Science, Engineering and Information Technology, 2011.

S. Niu, X. Jia, J. Sang, X. Liu, C. Lu, and Y. Liu, "Distributions of Raindrop Sizes and Fall Velocities in a Semiarid Plateau Climate: Convective versus Stratiform Rains," J. Appl. Meteorol. Climatol., vol. 49, no. Rotstayn 1997, pp. 632-645, 2010.

A. Shamshad, M. N. Azhari, M. H. Isa, W. M. A. W. Hussin, and B. P. Parida, "Development of an appropriate procedure for estimation of RUSLE EI30 index and preparation of erosivity maps for Pulau Penang in Peninsular Malaysia," Catena, vol. 72, no. 3, pp. 423-432, 2008.

Malaysian Meteorological Department, "General Climate of Malaysia," 2016. [Online]. Available:

M. Mohamed, E. Padmanabhan, B. L. H. Mei, and W. B. Siong, "The Peat Soils of Sarawak," 2002.

K. H. Tew, Production of Malaysian soil erodibility nomograph in relation to soil erosion issues. Subang Jaya, Selangor: VT Soil Erosion Research and Consultancy, 1999.

British Standard Institution, "British Standard Methods of Test for Soils for Civil Engineering Purposes BS1377-2," Br. Stand., p. 72, 1990.

M. F. Yusof, R. Abdullah, H. M. Azamathulla, N. A. Zakaria, and A. A. Ghani, "Modified Soil Erodibility Factor, K for Peninsular Malaysia Soil Series," 3rd Int. Conf. Manag. Rivers 21st Century Sustain. Solut. Glob. Cris. Flooding, Pollut. Water Scarcity, pp. 799-808, 2011.

How to Cite
A.H, J., P.L., L., S.N.L., T., & L.K., Y. (2017). ASSESSMENT OF SOIL EROSION BY SIMULATING RAINFALL ON AN EQUATORIAL ORGANIC SOIL. Journal of Civil Engineering, Science and Technology, 8(2), 72-81.