POPULATION & ENVIRONMENT LINKAGES SERVICE
Land Use - Desertification
Last updated: 04/13/00
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"Desertification is land degradation in arid, semi-arid and dry sub-humid areas (drylands) resulting mainly from adverse human impact. It is a widespread but discrete in space process of land degradation throughout the drylands which is quite different from the phenomenon of observed cyclic oscillations of vegetation productivity at desert fringes ("desert expansion or contraction") as revealed by satellite data and related to climate fluctuations. At present desertification directly affects about 3.6 billion hectares-70% of the total drylands, or nearly one quarter of the total land area of the world, and about one sixth of the world's population. These figures exclude natural hyper-arid deserts." -- United Nations Environment Programme

Type of Resource Summary
Title Desertification, Drought and their Consequences
Author A.P. Koohafkan
Affiliation Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Url http://www.fao.org/WAICENT/FAOINFO/SUSTDEV/EPdirect/EPan0005.htm
Peer Review Unknown Review Process
Abstract 1996 summary notes that "desertification is a world-wide phenomenon which causes the earth's ecosystems to deteriorate. It affects about two-thirds of the countries of the world, and one-third of the earth's surface, on which one billion people live, namely, one-fifth of the world population" and "Desertification weaken the economies of the developing countries, particularly when they have no other resources than their agriculture. This is particularly true in dry-zone African countries, which have to deal with emergency situations created by drought and desertification, despite the increasing debt burdens."

Type of Resource Report
Title Status of Desertification and Implementation of the United Nations Plan of Action to Combat Desertification
Author United Nations Environment Programme
Affiliation United Nations Environment Programme
Url http://grid2.cr.usgs.gov/des/uncedtoc.html
Peer Review Unknown Review Process
Abstract Includes an Executive summary of the full report which includes:

Type of Resource Report
Title Implementation of The Plan of Action to Combat Desertification
Author United Nations Environment Programme
Affiliation United Nations Environment Programme
Url http://grid2.cr.usgs.gov/des/desfintoc.html
Peer Review Unknown Review Process
Abstract 1991 report prepared for the United Nations General Assembly. The report focuses particularly of issues of financing programs to combat desertification.

Type of Resource Treaty Chapter + Report Chapter
Title Agenda 21: Chapter 12.  Managing fragile ecosystems: combating desertification and drought
Earth Summit +5: Chapter 12.  Managing fragile ecosystems: combating desertification and drought
Author United Nations Conference on Environment and Development
Affiliation United Nations
Url http://www.cnie.org/agenda21/a21-12.htm (Treaty Text)
http://www.fao.org/WAICENT/FAOINFO/SUSTDEV/EPdirect/EPre0031.htm (Report Chapter)
Peer Review Unknown Review Process
Abstract Text of Chapter 12 of the Treaty adopted    at the 1992 United Nations Confrence on Environment and Development (UNCED - the "Earth Summit") in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Plus, a chapter of a 1997 UN report looking at progress five years later.

Type of Resource Journal
Title Aridlands Newsletter
Author Editor Katherine Waser
Affiliation The Office of Arid Lands Studies: University of Arizona
Url http://ag.arizona.edu/OALS/ALN/ALNHome.html
Peer Review Unknown Review Process
Abstract This is the home page of the Newsletter Arid Lands. The full text of each Newsletter is available. "The purpose of The Arid Lands Newsletter is to explore events and issues of interest to arid lands researchers, resource managers, and policy makers." which sometimes touches upon population issues.

Type of Resource Bibliography
Title Bibliography of world desertification.
Author Global Resources Information Database
Affiliation United Nations Environment Programme
Url http://grid2.cr.usgs.gov/des/desbib.lst.Z
Peer Review Unknown Review Process
Abstract "This is a comprehensive listing with keynames. The file is compressed with the UNIX compress command. Click on "Load to local disk" and save with .Z extension."

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