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  • Nadine Anderson

Restoring Our Lands, Building Drought Resilience on World Environment Day


World Environment Day 2024 climate change mindfulness. sustainability

This World Environment Day, the focus is on the critical issue of land degradation and the steps we can take to restore our soils, combat desertification, and build greater resilience to droughts.

 

Land degradation is a global crisis, with over 20% of the planet's land area — an area larger than the United States and Mexico combined — already degraded. This loss of fertile soil, vegetation, and biodiversity has devastating consequences, contributing to the cycle of poverty, food insecurity, and environmental destruction.

 

Overgrazing, deforestation and poor agricultural practices

One of the primary drivers of land degradation is desertification — the process by which formerly productive land turns into desert, often due to a combination of human activities and climate change. Overgrazing, deforestation, poor agricultural practices, and the expansion of urban areas all contribute to desertification, which affects the livelihoods of over 3 billion people worldwide.

 

But there is hope. Land restoration efforts around the world are proving that we can rejuvenate degraded landscapes and build resilience to drought. Techniques like agroforestry, conservation agriculture, and landscape-scale ecosystem restoration are helping to rebuild soil health, reestablish native vegetation, and enhance the ability of communities to withstand the impacts of droughts and other extreme weather events.

 

A renewed mindful awareness and commitment

On this "World Environment Day", let us commit to scaling up these land restoration efforts and ensuring a sustainable future for our planet. By investing in the health of our soils and ecosystems, we can not only mitigate the effects of climate change, but also improve food security, create green jobs, and support the well-being of communities on the frontlines of desertification and drought.


The path forward is clear — through collective action, innovation, and a renewed commitment to environmental stewardship, we can restore our lands, build drought resilience, and create a more sustainable world for all.

 

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