Deakin Communicating Science 2016

EES 200/101

Stopping the Sands from Spreading

This photos shows what a difference management can make with Holistic Planned Grazing management scheme on the left and advancing desertification on the right.

Desertification is an extremely complex phenomenon and varies greatly from each situation. Desertification in China is vastly different from desertification in Romania or Australia but the one thing they all have in common is the need to find a solution.

On a global scale, The United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD)has brought 195 nations/ parties together to “improve the living conditions for people in drylands, to maintain and restore land and soil productivity, and to mitigate the effects of drought.” , with a 10 year strategy “to forge a global partnership to reverse and prevent desertification/land degradation and to mitigate the effects of drought in affected areas in order to support poverty reduction and environmental sustainability”.  They focus on bringing framework that governments can implement in regards to each country, and international cooperation by allowing more developed countries share their resources, technologies and discoveries, but also encourage a ‘bottoms-up’ approach with involving communities and individuals and educating about their specific situation and what can be done.

For example, at a more regional scale,  The Savory Institute cofounder Allan Savory argues that while a lot of people point to livestock as a cause or at least a contributing factor to desertification, that livestock are vital in reversing desertification and that it would be impossible to fight desertification in the long term without large herds of livestock. See his interview here

Reversing Desertification with Livestock

At any level whether it be global or locally on one farm, revegetation and better land use is a key to combatting desertification, it is suggested in many of government plans of the UNCCD for many countries so we can gather that that these are fundamental solutions while other solutions depend on the locality, the severity, the resources available and of course the awareness of this ever increasing problem.

It is a difficult thing, thinking you are doing something about it and actually doing something about it, but once you have made it a habit, or way of life then your set and this is what many farmers and must do otherwise the sand will keep spreading.


Clean up the world, preventing desertification, viewed the 20th April 2016, desertification,—english.pdf

United Nations Convention to Comabt Desertification, viewed 20th April 2016,

Our World, United Nations University, Reserving desertification with livestock, viewed 20th April 2016,

Savory Institute, viewed 20th April 2016,


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This entry was posted on April 20, 2016 by in Burwood - Friday 11am, Uncategorized and tagged , .

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