Current Desertification News and Events | Page 2

Current Desertification News and Events, Desertification News Articles.
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Conservationists 'on the fence' about barriers to protect wildlife in drylands
To fence or not to fence? That is the question facing conservationists concerned with barriers that keep wildlife in and people out. (2015-05-06)

Baylor researcher finds first-ever evidence of climate change in ancient Northern China
Using a relatively new scientific dating technique, a Baylor University geologist and a team of international researchers were able to document -- for the first time -- a drastic climate change 4,200 years ago in northern China that affected vegetation and led to mass migration from the area. (2015-02-17)

Dirt mounds made by termites in Africa, South America, Asia could prevent spread of deserts
Termites might not top the list of humanity's favorite insects, but new research suggests that their large dirt mounds are crucial to stopping deserts from spreading into semi-arid ecosystems. (2015-02-05)

Tiny termites can hold back deserts by creating oases of plant life
Princeton University research suggests that termite mounds can help prevent the spread of deserts into semi-arid ecosystems and agricultural lands. The results not only suggest that termite mounds could make these areas more resilient to climate change than previously thought, but could also inspire a change in how scientists determine the possible effects of climate change on ecosystems. (2015-02-05)

Bottom trawling causes deep-sea biological desertification
A study led by scientists from the Polytechnic University of Marche -- Ancona, Italy -- involving researchers from the Institute of Marine Sciences and the Autonomous University of Barcelona, has determined that fishing trawling causes intensive, long-term biological desertification of the sedimentary seabed ecosystems, diminishing their content in organic carbon and threatening their biodiversity. (2014-05-20)

Salt needed: Tolerance lessons from a dead sea fungus
Some organisms thrive in salty environments by lying dormant when salt concentrations are very high. Other organisms need salt to grow. In the May 9, 2014 issue of Nature Communications, a team including DOE Joint Genome Institute researchers described the genome of a Dead Sea fungus. Understanding how organisms adapt to extremely salty environments could help improve salt tolerance in crops, laying the groundwork of understanding necessary to grow them in desert and saline environments. (2014-05-09)

A new tree-planting technique for ecological control of desert
A recent research using desert plant Haloxylon ammodendron discovered that high desert surface temperature is a major limiting factor under numerous desert habitats. It provides a novel idea for the measures of desert ecological control. Based on the discovery, a new tree-planting technique for desert afforestation is invented. This study has been published in a new issue of SCIENCE CHINA. (2014-04-02)

Paper predicts a future without carnivores would be truly scary
A fascinating paper released today from a team of leading scientists, including Dr. Joel Berger of the Wildlife Conservation Society and University of Montana, reports on the current status of large carnivores and the ecological roles they play in regulating ecosystems worldwide, and finds that a world without these species is certainly scarier than a world with them. (2014-01-09)

Study documents catastrophic collapse of Sahara's wildlife
A new study led by the Wildlife Conservation Society and Zoological Society or London warns that the world's largest tropical desert, the Sahara, has suffered a catastrophic collapse of its wildlife populations. (2013-12-03)

Greater desertification control using sand trap simulations
In the fight against desertification, so-called straw checkerboard barriers (SCB) play a significant role. SCB consists of half -exposed criss-crossing rows of straws of wheat, rice, reeds, and other plants. The trouble is that our understanding of the laws governing wind-sand movement in SCB and their surrounding area is insufficient. Now, researchers in China have performed a numerical simulation of the sand movement inside the SCB, described in a paper just published in EPJ E. (2013-09-27)

Economic rewards of better land management: Estimated 2.3 billion tons of crops worth $1.4 trillion
Adopting proven sustainable land management practices could raise world crop supplies by an estimated 2.3 billion tonnes, worth $1.4 trillion, experts say in a study being released at a major global desertification conference. Conducted by the international Economics of Land Degradation initiative, the scientific interim report says land's economic value (2013-09-24)

Overgrazing turning parts of Mongolian Steppe into desert
Overgrazing by millions of sheep and goats is the primary cause of degraded land in the Mongolian Steppe, one of the largest remaining grassland ecosystems in the world, researchers say in a new report. The degraded land holds implications both for local food production and global climate. (2013-09-05)

Identification of animal disease-transmission agents based on social networks tools
Spanish and US scientists propose a new criterion to identify disease-transmission agents in an article published in the prestigious journal PNAS. Their study could make an important contribution to predicting the species most likely to cause future pandemics. (2013-06-11)

Pollution in Northern Hemisphere helped cause 1980s African drought
Air pollution in the Northern Hemisphere in the mid-20th century cooled the upper half of the planet and pushed rain bands south, contributing to the prolonged and worsening drought in Africa's Sahel region. Clean air legislation in the 1980s reversed the trend and the drought lessened. (2013-06-06)

Demographic miracle in the deserts
Dryland ecosystems cover 41 percent of the Earth's land surface. These ecosystems are highly vulnerable to global environmental change and desertification. But climate change seems to have a positive impact on some plants. A study involving the Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research in Rostock has come to this conclusion. (2012-10-08)

Disappearing grasslands: ASU scientists to study dramatic environmental change
The Earth's grasslands and savannas are experiencing a major transformation as woody plants, such as trees and shrubs, have begun to dominate arid lands. Many ecologists documenting this change consider it to be desertification. However, ASU scientists believe it may not be completely detrimental. Scientists are beginning research funded by the National Academies Keck Futures Initiative. (2012-06-22)

Earth observation for us and our planet
The Rio+20 summit on promoting jobs, clean energy and a more sustainable use of our planet's resources closed today after three days of talks. During the summit, the role of Earth observation in sustainable development was highlighted. (2012-06-22)

Ben-Gurion University planting an olive tree forest in the desert for agricultural research
Wadi Mashash is the only site in Israel where agricultural production is entirely based on the collection and use of the desert's rare flood waters. The techniques developed at Wadi Mashash are used to combat desertification worldwide and facilitate sustainable development of drylands. Already, much of the knowledge gained by past experiments, such as an acacia tree forest, is helping many countries in Africa grow trees for food, fodder and firewood without depleting all their resources. (2012-04-18)

AGU journal highlights for April 16, 2012
Featured in this release are research papers on the following topics: (2012-04-16)

Lung doctors expect respiratory diseases will worsen with global climate change
Worldwide increases in the incidences of asthma, allergies, infectious and cardiovascular diseases will result from a variety of impacts of global climate change, including rising temperatures, worsening ozone levels in urban areas, the spread of desertification, and expansions of the ranges of communicable diseases as the planet heats up, the professional organization representing respiratory and airway physicians stated in a new position paper released today. (2012-03-15)

Sand layer plays a key role in protecting the underlying permafrost in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau
The effect of sand layer on the ground temperature of permafrost is one of the unsolved scientific problems in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, the sand layers were found to play a key role in the protection of the underlying permafrost by the measured data, and this research work was published in Chinese Science Bulletin. (2012-03-05)

Sprawling and powerful 'community models' shaping future of regional and global science
Where the earliest ideas might have been conveyed in something as simple as a cave painting, modern-day scientists are wrestling with phenomena as big and complicated as intercontinental air pollution, desertification and global warming. Experts drawn from WSU and elsewhere will tackle the challenge in a panel this Friday at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Vancouver, British Columbia. (2012-02-17)

Biodiversity enhances ecosystems global drylands -- Ben-Gurion U researchers
Study indicates ability of ecosystems in drylands worldwide to maintain multiple functions, such as carbon storage and buildup of nutrient pools (multi-functionality) is enhanced by the number of perennial plant species, mainly shrubs and dwarf-shrubs, whereas increased average annual temperature reduces this ability. This study is the first in explicitly evaluating relationships among real ecosystems at a global scale. (2012-01-30)

Diverse ecosystems are crucial climate change buffer
Preserving diverse plant life will be crucial to buffer the negative effects of climate change and desertification in in the world's drylands, according to a new landmark study. (2012-01-12)

Deep words, shallow words: An initial analysis of water discourse in 40 years of UN declarations
UN University's Canadian-based Institute for Water, Environment and Health today published a study of the changing language related to water used in high-level declarations from relevant UN conferences over the past 40 years. Arguing that words matter, the report suggests effective strategies for highlighting and strengthening key concepts. (2011-10-31)

Acknowledgement and Incentive - Bernd Rendel Prizes 2011
In 2011, the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation) will award the tenth annual Bernd Rendel Prizes to young researchers who, before having achieved their doctorates, have already made significant and inventive contributions to basic research in the geosciences. (2011-08-30)

Best optimization of production of cloned Pinus genus described to date
Neiker-Tecnalia (the Basque Institute for Agricultural Research and Development) is working on the development of new biotechnological tools to produce in vitro selected trees of the Pinus genus. (2011-04-19)

Sand drift explained
The sand along the south-western coastal rim of Norway has drifted for more than 9000 calendar years. This was triggered by sea-level changes and human activities, new research has found. (2011-04-07)

Climate projections show human health impacts possible within 30 years
A panel of scientists speaking today at the Annual Meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) unveiled new research and models demonstrating how climate change could increase exposure and risk of human illness originating from ocean, coastal and Great Lakes ecosystems, with some studies projecting impacts to be felt within 30 years. (2011-02-19)

Climate change to continue to year 3000 in best case scenarios
New research indicates the impact of rising CO2 levels in the Earth's atmosphere will cause unstoppable effects to the climate for at least the next 1,000 years. (2011-01-09)

Ben-Gurion University of the Negev hosts UNESCO conference on drylands, deserts and desertification
Ben-Gurion University of the Negev will once again host an international conference on desertification. More than 500 people from 50 countries, including more than 20 presenters from American universities and US government agencies will attend next month's conference. A number of Palestinian and Jordanian delegates are also expected to participate. (2010-10-12)

Cocaine and ecstasy detected in waters of the L'Albufera in Valencia
The water in the canals and irrigation channels in the L'Albufera Natural Park in Valencia contain cocaine, ecstasy and a further six drugs. This has been confirmed by a study carried out by researchers from the University of Valencia, who have issued a warning about the continued presence of these substances on wildlife and human health. (2010-09-22)

Team devises technique to predict dust storms with infrared satellite
Researchers based at the University of Pittsburgh have developed a method for predicting dust and sandstorms that uses infrared satellite images to determine when conditions are ripe for the destructive phenomena, a technique that could be implemented globally and that the research team used to forecast a 2008 New Mexico dust storm -- the area's largest in decades -- two days beforehand. (2010-07-06)

More water for life
Water is the life-blood of agriculture; it is the liquid elixir that nurtures the growth of billions of hectares of crops needed to feed the world. The ample supply of water for farming and agriculture often means the difference between feast and famine. Many parts of the world, however, suffer from the opposite -- the growing scarcity of water available for agriculture. (2010-03-22)

38 percent of world's surface in danger of desertification
A team of Spanish researchers has measured the degradation of the planet's soil using the Life Cycle Assessment, a scientific methodology that analyses the environmental impact of human activities, and which now for the first time includes indicators on desertification. The results show that 38 percent of the world is made up of arid regions at risk of desertification. (2010-02-09)

'Cooling' forests can heat too
Forests can trap heat as well as carbon. Recent research at the Weizmann Institute shows that in one type of semi-arid forest, it may take years for the effects of carbon capture to override those of heat retention. (2010-01-21)

World forest observatory needed to monitor vital role of forests in climate deal
A new scientific organization is needed to monitor the commitments that will be made by developing countries at Copenhagen to cut their deforestation rates, according to research at the University of Leeds. (2009-11-30)

Nitrogen loss threatens desert plant life, study shows
As the climate gets warmer, arid soils lose nitrogen as gas, reports a new Cornell study. That could lead to deserts with even less plant life than they sustain today, say the researchers. (2009-11-06)

Developing countries must prepare for large-scale change
An international group of experts meet in Brazil this week to discuss global change impacts, adaptation and vulnerability with a focus on developing countries. (2009-11-02)

Satellite data instrumental in combating desertification
With land degradation in dryland regions continuing to worsen, the UN Convention to Combat Desertification has agreed on scientist-recommended indicators for monitoring and assessing desertification that signatory countries must report on. (2009-10-07)

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