Desertification Current Events

Desertification Current Events, Desertification News Articles.
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Analysis fingers causes of desertification
A meta-analysis published in the September 2004 issue of BioScience concludes that desertification is driven by a limited group of core variables, most prominently climatic factors that lead to reduced rainfall, technological factors, institutional and policy factors, and economic factors. These factors, the analysis shows, drive proximate causes of desertification such as the expansion of cropland and overgrazing, the extension of infrastructure, increased aridity, and wood extraction. (2004-09-01)

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)

UNCCD recognizes importance of satellites for combating desertification
Desertification is a worldwide problem that poses a severe challenge to more than 1.2 billion people in more than 100 countries. Delegates from 191 signatories to the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification gathered in Madrid, Spain, from Sept. 3 to 14 to address this problem that affects a quarter of the Earth's land surface. (2007-09-19)

Perennial vegetation, an indicator of desertification in Spain
A team of scientists has analyzed 29 esparto fields from Guadalajara to Murcia and has concluded that perennial vegetation cover is an efficient early warning system against desertification in these ecosystems. The study has been published in the Ecology magazine. (2009-09-04)

World Day to Combat Desertification focuses on human security
Human security is under threat from desertification, land degradation and drought. Combating this threat requires an integrated international response, which is why the theme for this year's World Day to Combat Desertification is (2009-06-17)

Desertification and monsoon climate change linked to shifts in ice volume and sea level
The East Asian summer monsoon and desertification in Eurasia is driven by fluctuating Northern Hemisphere ice volume and global sea level during the Ice Age, as shown in a study published in Nature Communications. Today, two thirds of the world's population is dependent on agriculture sustained by rains of the East Asian summer monsoon, and future climate change in this region can therefore have a major impact on global food production. (2018-03-07)

Tracking desertification with satellites highlighted at UNCCD COP
With a quarter of the Earth's land surface affected, the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification regards desertification as a worldwide problem. Delegates from the 170-plus signatories to the Convention currently gathered in Nairobi have been briefed by ESA representatives and national partners on how satellites are being used to track desertification in Europe. (2005-10-24)

Space sentinels track desertification on Mediterranean shores
The severe droughts and forest fires of recent years underline Mediterranean Europe's continuing vulnerability to desertification - 300 000 square kilometres of territory are currently affected, threatening the livelihoods of 16.5 million Europeans. A new satellite-based service is set to provide a continuous monitoring of regions most at risk. (2004-11-19)

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)

Scientists re-evaluating the meaning of 'desertification,' Duke ecologist says
A Duke University ecologist is leading an international scientific reassessment of the causes and effects of desertification, a term he said has been subject to misinterpretation and oversimplification. (2003-03-06)

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)

New World Atlas of Desertification shows unprecedented pressure on planet's resources
The World Desertification Atlas by the European Commission's Joint Research Centre provides the first comprehensive, evidence-based assessment of land degradation at a global level and highlights the urgency to adopt corrective measures. (2018-06-21)

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)

Ben-Gurion University of the Negev to host
More than 350 participants from over 40 countries are expected to participate in the largest international conference focused on the environment, which will be held at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Israel. (2008-12-03)

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)

Ages of the Navajo Sandstone
The real Jurassic Park was as an ancient landscape home to a vast desert covered mostly in sand dunes as far as the eye could see, where dinosaurs and small mammals roamed southern Utah. The Navajo Sandstone is known for its beautiful red and tan crossbedded sandstones that grace many of the national parks and monuments in the southwest USA -- for example Arches, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, and Zion national parks. (2019-09-09)

Sahara's abrupt desertification started by changes in Earth's orbit, accelerated by atmospheric and vegetation feedbacks
The Sahara, once covered with grasses and shrubs, did not become a desert gradually, but in two distinct steps, one of which was brutal. They were triggered by changes in Earth's orbit and tilt and were accelerated by feedbacks in the atmosphere and vegetation. (1999-07-07)

Did humans create the Sahara desert?
New research investigating the transition of the Sahara from a lush, green landscape 10,000 years ago to the arid conditions found today, suggests that humans may have played an active role in its desertification. (2017-03-14)

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)

Researchers offer new insights on arid, semiarid landscapes
A team of researchers in New Mexico has developed a multi-faceted process to study arid and semiarid landscapes that takes into account the wide range of factors influencing changes that can result in desertification. (2006-06-01)

Desertification alters regional ecosystem climate interactions
Using advanced remote-sensing techniques from U-2 surveillance plane and field studies, scientists from Carnegie Institution Department of Global Ecology have for the first time determined large-scale interactions between ecosystems and the climate during the process of desertification. The study published in Global Change Biology January 2005, is a milestone both for new methods employed and for understanding what is happening as agricultural and grazing lands change into desert--a top environmental worry of United Nations. (2005-01-18)

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)

High-flying observatory reveals land changing to desert
Using advanced remote-sensing techniques from a U-2 surveillance plane and field studies, scientists from the Carnegie Institution Department of Global Ecology have for the first time determined large-scale interactions between ecosystems and the climate during the process of desertification. The study is a milestone both for the new methods employed and for understanding what is happening as agricultural and grazing lands change into desert--a top environmental worry of the United Nations. (2004-12-20)

BioScience tip sheet, March 2009
The press release provides a listing of peer-reviewed research articles published in the March 2009 issue of BioScience, the journal of the American Institute of Biological Sciences. The journal's tag line is (2009-03-02)

Assessment of recent rapid land-cover change yields portraits of global human impact
The February 2005 issue of BioScience, the monthly journal of the American Institute of Biological Sciences (AIBS), includes a new assessment of rapid land-cover change around the world over the period from 1981 to 2000. Asia has the greatest concentration of areas of rapid land-cover change, but existing data do not support the claim that the African Sahel is a desertification hotspot. The Amazon Basin remains a hotspot of tropical deforestation, and rapid cropland increase is prominent in Southeast Asia. (2005-02-01)

Desertification: UN experts prescribe global policy overhaul to avoid looming mass migrations
Desertification, exacerbated by climate change, represents (2007-06-27)

Semi-arid land in China has expanded in recent decades and probably continues to expand
Semi-arid regions in China have undergone continuous expansion and a significant drying trend in recent decades. In the 21st century, semi-arid regions in China are projected to continuously expand, which will increase the challenges in dealing with desertification, food security and water supply. (2019-07-08)

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)

Spy satellite photos document desert plant invasion
Declassified spy satellite images, combined with aerial photos, document an invasion of honey mesquite bushes into a former arid grassland that is now part of a long-term scientific study of the processes of desertification in southern New Mexico. (2000-08-07)

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)

Millennium Ecosystem Assessment: Many of 2 billion dryland dwellers at risk as land degrades
Growing desertification worldwide threatens to swell by millions the number of poor forced to seek new homes and livelihoods. And a rising number of large, intense dust storms plaguing many areas menace the health of people even continents away, international experts warn in a new report. (2005-06-16)

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)

Yale dean addresses biggest environmental threats in new book
New Haven, Conn. -- Ten global environmental threats and how they can be addressed through treaties, new forms of government and international cooperation are examined in a new book, Global Environmental Governance. The book, written by Yale Dean Gus Speth and political scientist Peter Haas outlines shortcomings of current efforts to address climate disruption, loss of biodiversity, acid rain, ozone depletion, deforestation, desertification, degradation and shortages of freshwater, decline of marine fisheries, toxic pollutants and excess nitrogen. (2006-07-17)

Sowing seed on salty ground
Salty soil caused by irrigation practices in arid regions has become a major agricultural problem. Julian Schroeder and coworkers investigated a sodium transporter called OsHKT2;1 in the roots of rice plants. Their results provide evidence that this transporter has capabilities previously thought to exist but not genetically validated in plants before. Under salt stress, when sodium levels are too high, OsHKT2;1 transport is shut off, protecting the plant from accumulating too much sodium. (2007-06-06)

The first domesticated donkey was born in Africa
An international team of researchers, with the participation of Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (Spain) professor, Jordi Jordana, has published in Science magazine the results of their investigation into the origins of the domesticated donkey. The authors have discovered by using genetic analysis that the domesticated donkey originated in northeastern Africa approximately 5,000 years ago, quite probably due to the desertification of the Sahara. The conclusions of the study state that all domesticated donkeys come from two different lines from northeast Africa. (2004-06-28)

'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)

First global scientific conference supporting UN efforts to curb desertification opens in Argentina
As climate change negotiators continue to skirt the role of agricultural land use in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, top scientists working on land management in the world's vast dry areas will gather this week in Buenos Aires, Argentina, determined to make the case that thwarting desertification in drylands is viable and also critical to the success of a new climate deal. (2009-09-23)

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)

Greening at high latitudes may inhibit the expansion of midlatitude deserts
Besides inducing a stronger greenhouse effect, increasing carbon dioxide is also leading to global vegetation greening, especially in high latitudes, by the fertilization effect. A new study finds high-latitude vegetation greening may inhibit the expansion of midlatitude deserts. (2020-01-08)

How can desertification control and development be reconciled?
A team of sociologists, hydrologists, economists, ecologists and pastoralists of IRD studied the interactions between local societies and their environment at different temporal and spatial scales in the Jeffara, while including the effect of public-sector interventions in desertification control. They suggest recommendations for enabling rural populations to live and prosper in their region. (2007-03-05)

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