|The Soil / Water Relationship|
What's the Connection Among Soils, Compost, and Water?
Soil degradation and water pollution are widely recognized as major environmental problems. Less widely recognized is that soil and water are interconnected.
A healthy soil provides a number of vital functions including the ability to store water and nutrients, regulate flow of water, and neutralize pollutants.
The disturbance, compaction, and degradation of soils from human activity impacts soil structure and reduces its ability to provide these functions. When native soils are removed or eroded, soil organic content is reduced, soil structure declines, and the biological activity of the soil decreases — all resulting in poor water filtration and holding capacity. Soil erosion in stormwater runoff contributes to poor water quality and compromised salmon habitat in nearby streams. When soil is unhealthy, management of healthy landscaping becomes dependent on application of herbicides and pesticides which also runs off, further damaging adjacent ecosystems.
For more information on the connection between soil quality and water resources and water quality, visit WORC's Soils for Salmon website.