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Application Of Water Hyacinth (Eichhornia Crassipes) Stalk Nanofibers To Prevent Soil Erosion CHAPTER 1 Introduction In times when torrential

rains come pouring down on Earth, water is seeped through the ground thereby making it moist, causing it to loosen up. This gives a higher risk of probable soil erosion. Landslides are never new to the Philippines due to the fact that rain is present all year round. Fecund landslides also happen not only because of this natural process but also because of mortal deeds such as indiscriminate logging, illicit or even licit mining, deforestation, and the like. These lead not only to the devastation of material possessions amounting to millions of pesos but also to the life of folks of various races alike. Coping with such problems of soil corrosion and landslides, there is a necessity to tackle this dilemma by applying organic materials of beneficial properties that can serve as substitutes for existing materials of this type- a material that can bear the mass of soil to prevent erosion. To date, there is an existing technology that uses coconut coir where it is placed on top of loose soil thus preventing erosion when rain comes. However, this existing solution of preventing soil erosion is not equitably accessible to Surigao del Norte folks due to the great demand of these materials for other products such as mats, bags and furniture not only in the local community but also for worldwide consumption. This in demand state of coconut fibers poses a crisis regarding the availability of the material and would thus result to setbacks regarding mass production. With such circumstances, the researchers seek to uncover an alternative material to coconut coir fiber mat for the prevention of soil erosion in as much as Surigao del Norte holds a lot of dangerprone areas specifically that of landslides mainly because of human activities such as mining. Water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes) with its corresponding photograph shown in Figure 1 is fascinating material for investigation as a substitute for coco coir as expressed by its anatomy that is made up mainly of cellulose, hemicelluloses, and lignin, and is almost similar to coco coir. Furthermore, the said alternative is very abundant in the locality, relatively non-toxic, environment-friendly and of low cost. E. crassipes has not been investigated for its application as mats for possible utilization in landslide-prone areas such as the province of Surigao del Norte where massive mining activities are very rampant. Moreover, no report has been made on the properties of dried water hyacinth stalk such as its micronlevel morphology and the effect of rain water, tap water, and water taken from Taganito on its strength. This study will not only aid on solving problems on landslide-prone areas but also on the problem of massive population of water hyacinth in the locality (Figure 2). The massive population of water hyacinth is destructive to the aquatic ecosystem since is blocks sunlight from reaching depth. This leads to the building up of dissolved carbon dioxide in the water thereby significantly decreasing the amount of oxygen, thus inducing ecological imbalance in the ecosystem.