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Global Change Master Directory (GCMD)
Desertification Atlas (Africa) Maps 1-17
Entry ID: NBId0270_101


Summary
Abstract: INTRODUCTION
Desertification/Land Degradation - The Background

More than 6.1 billion hectares, over one third of the Earth's land
area, is dryland. Nearly one billion hectares of this area are
naturally hvperarid deserts, with very low biological
productivity. The remaining 5.1 billion hectares are made up of arid,
semiarid and dry subhumid areas, part of which have become desert
since the dawn of civilization while other parts of these areas are
still being degraded by human action today. These lands are the
habitat and the source of livelihood for one quarter of the world's
population. They are areas characterized by the persistent natural
menace of recurrent drought, a natural hazard accentuated by
imbalanced management of natural resources. Particularly acute
drought years in the Sahelian region of Africa from 1968 to 1973, and
their tragic effects on the peoples of the region, drew worldwide
attention to the problems of human survival and development in
drylands, particularly on desert margins. These problems have been
addressed by the United Nations (UN) General Assembly, in conformity
with the Charter of the United Nations. The UN General Assembly's
Resolution 3202 (vi) of 1 May 1974 recommended that the international
community undertake concrete and speedy measures to arrest
desertification and assist the economic development of affected
areas. The Economic and Social Council's Resolution 1878 (LVII) of 16
July 1974 requested all the concerned organizations of the UN system
to pursue a broad attack on the drought problem. Decisions of the
Governing Councils of the UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the UN
Environment Programme (UNEP) emphasized the need for undertaking
measures to check the spread of desert conditions. The General
Assembly then decided, by Resolution 3337 (xxix) of 17 December 1974,
to initiate concerted international action to combat desertification
and, in order to provide an impetus to this action, to convene a UN
Conference on Desertification (UNCOD), between 29 August and 9
September 1977 in Nairobi, Kenya, which would produce an effective,
comprehensive and coordinated programme for solving the problem. For
the purposes of this atlas, desertification/land degradation is
defined as: Land degradation in arid, semiarid and dry subhumid areas
resulting mainly from adverse human impact.

Geographic Coverage
 N: 40.0 S: -35.0  E: 55.0  W: -20.0

Data Set Citation
Version: Not provided


Temporal Coverage
Start Date: 1990-01-01
Stop Date: 1992-12-30


Location Keywords
CONTINENT > AFRICA


Science Keywords
HUMAN DIMENSIONS >HABITAT CONVERSION/FRAGMENTATION >DESERTIFICATION >REGIONAL DESERTIFICATION    [Definition]
HUMAN DIMENSIONS >POPULATION >POPULATION DISTRIBUTION    [Definition]
BIOSPHERE >ECOSYSTEMS >TERRESTRIAL ECOSYSTEMS >DESERTS    [Definition]


Project
GTOS >Global Terrestrial Observing System    [Information]


Access Constraints
Public


Keywords
DESERT
DESERTIFICATION
DRYLANDS
GIS
LAND USE
SAHEL
Terrestrial Ecosystems > Arid Land Ecosystem > Desertification


Data Center
Division of Early Warning and Assessment, United Nations Environmental Program
Data Center URL: https://www.unenvironment.org

Data Center Personnel
Name: JOHANNES AKIWUMI
Phone: (+254-20) 7624214
Fax: (+254-20) 7624315
Email: Johannes.Akiwumi at unep.org
Contact Address:
Head, Data and Information Management Section
Division of Early Warning and Assessment (DEWA)
United Nations Environment Programme
P. O. Box 30552
City: Nairobi
Postal Code: 00100
Country: Kenya


Personnel
JOHANNES AKIWUMI
Role: TECHNICAL CONTACT
Phone: (+254-20) 7624214
Fax: (+254-20) 7624315
Email: Johannes.Akiwumi at unep.org
Contact Address:
Head, Data and Information Management Section
Division of Early Warning and Assessment (DEWA)
United Nations Environment Programme
P. O. Box 30552
City: Nairobi
Postal Code: 00100
Country: Kenya


Extended Metadata Properties
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Creation and Review Dates
DIF Creation Date: 1970-01-01
Last DIF Revision Date: 2018-11-01



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