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Parameters considered in the past include latitude, elevation, relief, seismicity, basin slope and area, percent basin cover by vegetation, and mean annual precipitation and temperature.
In order to understand the relationship between erosion rates and environmental parameters, we compiled all publicly available outcrop and drainage basin erosion rates inferred from measurements of Be half-life (Nishiizumi et al., 2007), production rate (Balco et al., 2008), and scaling schemes (Lal, 1991) used over the past 24 years, we compared erosion rates and a variety of environmental parameters, both individually and using multivariate statistical methods.
Drainage basin and outcrop erosion rates both vary by climate zone, rock type, and tectonic setting.
of Geology and Rubenstein School of the Environment and Natural Resources, University of Vermont, 180 Colchester Ave., Burlington, Vermont 05405, USA ), likely reflecting the acceleration of rock weathering rates under soil.In some cases, information was provided in the original publications; in other cases, we contacted authors directly.Samples in this compilation required recalculation because constraints on production rates, neutron attenuation path length, and the GSA supplemental data item 2011216, reference list for text Figure 1, erosion rate recalculation methods, Arc GIS data extraction methods, statistical methods, results of statistical analyses (including Figs.Kirchner et al., 2001; Trimble, 1977; Wilkinson, 2005), and various modeling approaches have been implemented (Syvitski et al., 2005) to overcome the limitations of sediment yield data.Geologic erosion rates are useful for placing human impact on the sedimentary system and global environment in context.
Our compilation and analyses are carried out using available data, however, and further sampling in under-studied regions can only improve our understanding of how different factors control erosion rates. We included only unshielded outcropping bedrock samples collected from horizontal or subhorizontal surfaces and modern stream sediment samples from drainage basins that did not experience extensive recent glacial cover.