The vision of the SOIL Fund is to expand the science of erosion and sediment control and to improve the lives of those impacted by erosion and sedimentation.
The SOIL Fund provides technical assistance for programs and projects that address soil erosion and sedimentation through applied technology, education, and research.
How we Accomplish our Mission
The work of the SOIL Fund is accomplished through our regions, chapters, affiliate organizations, and individual members. Our potential to provide technical assistance depends on the soundness and practicality of a proposal, availability of funds, and the willingness and qualifications of IECA members to volunteer for a specific project.
- To support research that advances our knowledge of the impacts of erosion and the techniques to control it.
- To support erosion control education and applied technology.
- To support projects that improve the lives of those impacted by erosion and sediment.
Click here to download the SOIL Fund's brochure in English or in Spanish.
When you donate to the SOIL Fund you receive satisfaction in helping a good cause, a tax deduction for a charitable contribution and an opportunity to put your money where your passion lies. Be a part of the solution!
Apply for SOIL Fund Support
IECA Members & Chapters
We encourage IECA chapters and individual IECA members from both Regions 1 and 2 to identify and support worthy projects which will further international erosion and sediment control. If you are interested in applying for project approval and funding please download the SOIL Fund Pre-Application (PDF). The Pre-Application is also available as a WORD Document. If your project is selected for further consideration, you will be asked to submit additional information to complete the application process.
Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) & Communities
NGOs and communities are encouraged to apply for technical assistance from the SOIL Fund. Please tell us about your project using the Request for Technical Assistance (PDF) form which is available for download. This form is also available as a WORD document. If your project is selected for further consideration, you will be asked to submit additional information, and we will attempt to find an IECA member or chapter that is interested in providing technical assistance.
Projects We Have Supported
Nursery under construction
Wetland Restoration Project in Southern Mexico
The latest active project for the SOIL Fund is along the Pacific coast of southern Mexico, in the State of Oaxaca, at Cacaluta one of the famous nine bays of Huatulco. The Cacaluta watershed, topographically defined, is well studied given its relatively small size, 49 sq. km. It is a unique watershed in that biological diversity is very high, but it is also threatened by land development, competing land uses, and competing government jurisdictions. Within the Park lies the Zanate lagoon, which covers approximately seven hectares. It is named for one of the dominant trees, Zanate, (Bravaisea integerrima) a threatened and endangered species. Laguna Zanate has lost its hydraulic capacity and natural drainage patterns, as two plus meters of sediment have accumulated due to hurricanes and altered land use. The SOIL Fund to date has supported the construction of a native plant nursery, primarily Zanate, for establishment of 11 vegetated islands that will provide erosion control, habitat (fisheries, wildlife), shade, and soil building.
The SOIL Fund may be able to help with construction of the islands as well as provide technical assistance with other erosion related issues.
Tom Williams gets his hands dirty while working on the Tsuraku Water Supply Project
Tsuraku Water Supply Project, Ecuador
The SOIL Fund's first project was conducted at the edge of the Amazon basin rainforest in Ecuador in 2009. Two IECA teams traveled to the area to provide erosion and sediment control guidance for installation of a pipeline through the jungle from a water intake structure to a water storage tank and village school as well as hands-on soil stabilization instruction. The teams included Tom Williams (CPESC), Nancy Roth Williams, Jeff DeGraffenried, and Meredith Jackson. Ricardo Schmalbach, Executive President of Geosolutions Synthetic S.A. in Quito, Ecuador, provided a liner for the water storage tank. The project was conducted in cooperation with the Engineers Without Borders student chapter at the University of Arizona.
Doug Wimble speaking at LANDCON 2010 in Xian, China
LANDCON 2010 International Conference on Combating Land Degradation in China
IECA Past President, Doug Wimble, was sponsored by the SOIL Fund to speak at this joint conference of the World Association of Soil and Water Conservation (WASWAC) and the Desertification Mitigation and Remediation of Land Project (DESIRE). The conference was held in October 2010 in Xian, China. Doug's objectives were to encourage an alliance between WASWAC and IECA and explore the possibilities for an IECA chapter in China. He also participated in a field trip to China's Guangzhou Province which provided an opportunity to see erosion control measures along highways and at a mine site.
Planting banana trees within water infiltration trenches on Easter Island
Land reclamation on Easter Island: a demonstration project
In 2010 and 2011, Dr. Pablo Garcia-Chevesich led a team which established banana orchards on Easter Island, a Chilean territory in the South Pacific. Pablo intends for this SOIL Fund project to show local residents how idle, deforested, eroded land can be used to cultivate a cash crop with a ready market on the Chilean mainland. Fifty trees were planted at two adjacent sites owned by two families in the Hanga Roa community. The project included establishment of artificial windbreaks to protect the young banana trees, excavation of water infiltration trenches, and construction of a rainwater harvesting system to facilitate irrigation. The families will grow vegetables between the rows of banana trees.
Severe erosion in the Malingua Pamba community of the Ecuadorian Andes
Preliminary Assessment of Erosion Problems in Malingua Pamba, Ecuador
In July 2011, Will Mahoney (CPSWQ) conducted a field reconnaissance of approximately 75 eroded sites in a rural agricultural community in the Ecuadorian Andes. Hundreds of years of clearing native vegetation have resulted in a loss of much of the original rich organic topsoil leaving sandy volcanic soils which are very susceptible to water erosion. Will produced a report for the SOIL Fund which recommended low-tech solutions for erosion mitigation. In October 2012, a team from Engineers Without Borders, Denver Professional Chapter assisted the community with installation of structural BMPs using local materials and planting native vegetation at five of the high-priority sites along roads and in agricultural fields.
Will Mahoney (blue shirt and tie) speaking about the SOIL Fund at an erosion seminar organized by the University of Montenegro in southeastern Europe
Erosion Control around the World with the SOIL Fund
In 2012, the SOIL Fund provided support to Will Mahoney who made a three-month around-the-world trip visiting 26 countries and territories on 5 continents. He attended international erosion conferences in New Zealand, China, Serbia, and Spain; spoke at three of these conferences about the SOIL Fund project in Malingua Pamba, Ecuador; met with erosion control professionals in several other countries; and observed erosion and sedimentation control projects and problems while participating in field trips. Will has documented his travels in a blog titled Erosion Control Around the World.