Desertification awareness decade


  • Leslie Ofori,

  • Randy Showstack


In an effort to raise awareness about desertification and better protect and manage the world's drylands, the United Nations (U.N.) launched the Decade for Deserts and the Fight Against Desertification in mid-August. Five U.N. agencies—including the U.N. Environment Programme and the U.N. Development Programme—will spearhead activities related to desertification. The degradation of drylands affects 25% of the Earth's landmass and more than 2.1 billion people, most of whom are from developing counties, according to the U.N. Each year, 12 million hectares of land are lost to desertification, an area that could produce 20 million tons of grain.