Increased Drought due to Global Warming
What is desertification? Desertification is the degradation of soil in arid areas and occurs due to climate variations, which may be caused by human activities. Factors that could lead to the decreased productivity of land include deforestation, overgrazing, poverty, political instability, and deficient irrigation systems.
Restoring degraded land helps in numerous ways including job growth, economic resiliency, increased incomes, and food security. Along with human benefits, healthy land also provides an avenue for biodiversity to thrive.
Additionally, restoring our degraded land will help decrease the amount of atmospheric carbon that contributes to global warming, slowing climate change. Through this method, we can ensure a greener recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Currently, about 75% of Earth's ice-free land has been harmed due to an increased demand for raw materials, highways, homes, and food according to the Living Planet Report 2020 by the WWF and the Zoological Society of London. Avoiding the destruction of productive land is crucial and urgent to reverse the current trend of global warming. So far, over 100 countries have committed to restore approximately 1 billion hectares of land, almost the size of China, over the next decade according to a study by the Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency. If we can restore this land, then there will be many benefits for humans.
Therefore, it is vital to treat all land as limited and valuable capital that cannot be restored easily. The United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) aims to raise awareness about the growing issue. Even during the recovery of this pandemic, it is important to prioritize the health of our limited land. Every individual on the planet has a role to play in combatting this issue since all of us hold a stake in the future based on the land that we can use.