Desertification, land degradation and drought

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Deforestation worldwide could have important consequences for diet quality and human nutrition given the numerous ecosystem services that are provided by forests and biodiverse landscapes. Yet, empirical research assessing the links between deforestation and diets is lacking. In this study, we examined the association between deforestation and diet diversity among children using geolocated Demographic and Health Survey data for 33,777 children across 15 countries of sub-Saharan Africa coupled with remotely-sensed data on forest cover loss.
Living in a harsh, desert climate, Omani rural communities have developed locally-appropriate knowledge to deal with water scarcity. Similar to the qanat, the aflaj taps into the natural water table and uses a gravity system to channel water through underground channels to villages. Traditional techniques of water management, such as the aflaj, represents a way of adapting to and coping with difficult climates which have persisted for millennia. However, knowledge systems have often ‘decayed’ with the onset of modernity.
Ethnopharmacological relevance In the Peruvian Amazon, the use of medicinal plants is a common practice. However, there is few documented information about the practical aspects of their use and few scientific validation. The starting point for this work was a set of interviews of people living in rural communities from the Peruvian Amazon about their uses of plants. Protozoan diseases are a public health issue in the Amazonian communities, who partly cope with it by using traditional remedies.
After a long-term decline in the frequency and lethality of famines, 2017 has witnessed resurgent international concern over the issue. This paper examines the trends in famine over the last 150 years, with particular attention to the fusion of famine with forcible mass starvation. It identifies four main historic periods of famines, namely: the zenith of European colonialism; the extended World War; post-colonial totalitarianism; and post-Cold War humanitarian emergencies; and asks whether we may be entering a fifth period in which famines return in new guises.
Elsevier, Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, Volume 26-27, 1 June 2017
Spatial distribution of deforestation observed in 1988–2004 and 2005–2014, including the main territorial units (agrarian settlements) created prior to 2004 and subsequently, along with key transportation infrastructure (paved roads and ports).
The Brazilian Amazon is being affected by the new worldwide geopolitical transformation that is tending towards an integrated global economy. In the region environmental considerations have not been adequately incorporated into long-term land use planning and this failure has partly been due to the complexities of the country's existing inter-sectorial institutional arrangements. In this paper, we briefly explore two distinct economic development phases that have been reshaping Amazonian landscapes since the 1990s.
Land Degradation (LD) in socio-environmental systems negatively impacts sustainable development paths. This study proposes a framework to LD evaluation based on indicators of diversification in the spatial distribution of sensitive land. We hypothesize that conditions for spatial heterogeneity in a composite index of land sensitivity are more frequently associated to areas prone to LD than spatial homogeneity. Spatial heterogeneity is supposed to be associated with degraded areas that act as hotspots for future degradation processes.
Using newly-released and globally available high-resolution remote sensing data on forest loss, we update the assessment of the cross-country determinants of deforestation in developing countries. We validate most of the major determinants found in the previous literature, generally based on earlier time-periods, except for the role of institutional quality. Agricultural trade, hitherto relatively neglected, is found to be one of the main factors causing deforestation.
Background Information about the global structure of agriculture and nutrient production and its diversity is essential to improve present understanding of national food production patterns, agricultural livelihoods, and food chains, and their linkages to land use and their associated ecosystems services. Here we provide a plausible breakdown of global agricultural and nutrient production by farm size, and also study the associations between farm size, agricultural diversity, and nutrient production.
Green waste left over from vegetable harvesting provides feed for sheep and is then returned to the soil as manure
Livestock has disappeared from swathes of England in the past 50 years as many growers became increasingly specialised. However as our soils increasingly suffer leaching, erosion and compaction from ever-heavier modern machinery, more and more arable farmers are reaping the benefits of bringing sheep and cattle back on to the land. Such measures help support SDG 12 Responsible Consumption and Production.