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Geoscientific Model Development An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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https://doi.org/10.5194/gmd-2020-231
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/gmd-2020-231
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: development and technical paper 06 Aug 2020

Submitted as: development and technical paper | 06 Aug 2020

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This preprint is currently under review for the journal GMD.

Soil salinization risk assessment owing to poor water quality drip irrigation: A case study from an olive plantation at the arid to semi-arid Beit She'an Valley, Israel

Vladimir Mirlas1, Yaakov Anker1, Asher Aizenkod2, and Naftali Goldshleger1 Vladimir Mirlas et al.
  • 1The department of chemical engineering and The Eastern R&D center, Ariel University, Israel
  • 2The Plant Protection and Inspection Services of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Israel

Abstract. Salinization causes soil degradation and soil fertility reduction. The main reasons for soil salinization are poor irrigation water quality and incorrect irrigation management. Soil salinization is accelerated owing to irrigation with treated wastewater with elevated salt concentration. The study area is located in the Beit She'an Valley, one of the most important agricultural regions in Israel. The combination of soil salinization and poor drainage conditions impedes plant development and is manifested in economic damage to crops. Without clear irrigation criteria, an increase in soil salinity and steady damage to soil fertility might occur. The study objective was to provide an assessment of soil salting processes as a result of low-quality irrigation water at the Kibbutz Meirav olive plantation. This study combined various research methods, including soil salinity monitoring, field experiments, remote sensing (FDEM), and unsaturated soil profile saline water movement modeling. The assessment included the salinization processes of chalky soil under drip irrigation by water with various qualities. With a drip irrigation regime of water with a dissolved salt content of 3.13 dS/m, the salinization process is characterized by salts accumulation in the upper root zone of the trees. The modeling results showed that there is a soil salinization danger in using brackish water and that irrigation with potable water helps to reduce soil salinization.

Vladimir Mirlas et al.

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Vladimir Mirlas et al.

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Short summary
Salinization owing to poor irrigation water quality causes soil degradation and soil fertility reduction that with poor drainage conditions impedes plant development and is manifested in economic damage. This study provided a soil salting process evaluation procedure, by a combination of soil salinity monitoring, field experiments, remote sensing, and unsaturated soil profile saline water movement modeling. The modeling results validated the soil salinization danger from using brackish.
Salinization owing to poor irrigation water quality causes soil degradation and soil fertility...
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