Few regions of the United States are entirely safe from wind erosion. Whenever the soil surface is loose and dry with limited crop residue cover, and the wind sufficiently strong, soil erosion will occur. Soil erosion by wind causes diffuse pollution, loss of topsoil, reduced crop production, and damage to both public and private facilities. Factors contributing to the wind erosion process can vary daily. This complex process presents a challenge to the science of wind erosion prediction and control. USDA Agricultural Research Service is developing a new Wind Erosion Prediction System (WEPS) to overcome the limitations of the existing Wind Erosion Equation (WEQ). WEPS is a computer based model with submodels for crops, soils, tillage, erosion, weather, hydrology, and decomposition. USDA Soil Conservation Service assisted with the characterization of changes in the temporal soil properties of the tillage zone and ground surface and erosion rates at a validation site in the Great Lakes region. The results of the data collection for the soils and erosion submodels and a discussion of a windbreak demonstration site show the dynamic nature of the wind erosion process.

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