Navigation Links
World Day to Combat Desertification focuses on human security
Date:6/17/2009

Human security is under threat from desertification, land degradation and drought. Combating this threat requires an integrated international response, which is why the theme for this year's World Day to Combat Desertification is 'Conserving land and water = Securing our common future'.

Desertification, land degradation and drought (DLDD) deprive people of food, water and their homes and can undermine security and even trigger conflicts. According to the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), these phenomena have already forced between 17 and 24 million to leave their homes and that number is expected to rise to 200 million by 2050.

In its effort to combat DLDD, the UNCCD is calling for the global creation of short-, medium- and long-term strategies to deal with the scarcity of fertile soil by strengthening ecosystem management through the use of technology, knowledge and engineering concepts.

The term 'desertification' does not refer to the spread of existing deserts, but to the creation of new ones through the degradation of drylands, which cover 40% of the world's land surface. Since dryland desertification can be remedied by using appropriate land management techniques, it is essential to monitor the areas most at risk.

ESA has been working closely with the UNCCD secretariat for more than eight years, developing and demonstrating information services based on satellite Earth observation (EO) technologies to allow a better assessment and monitoring of desertification and land degradation.

EO satellites are able to highlight relevant changes in land use and can provide authorities with an overall picture of key pressures on land, such as burned land due to forest fires, erosion processes and their trends over time.

In 2004, ESA launched a large pilot project called DesertWatch to develop a set of satellite-based information services to monitor and assess the status of land degradation with the support of four of the European countries most affected by desertification Greece, Italy, Portugal and Turkey.

These satellite data were also combined with in-situ information, processing tools, models and geo-information systems to create standardised and comparable geo-information products that were also used to satisfy UNCCD reporting requirements.

ESA is currently preparing an extension to DesertWatch to review and adapt the methodology developed during the first project so it can be applied globally, for the benefit of all UNCCD Contracting Parties. The new methodology will be demonstrated in Portugal, Brazil and Mozambique.

ESA, through its TIGER initiative, is also supporting African countries to overcome water-related problems, such as drought, and to bridge gaps in information related to water through the use of EO technology. Under the first phase of TIGER, ESA provided more than 8500 satellite-based products free of charge to African researchers working on water-related research activities and management projects.

At the request of African water authorities, ESA has extended the initiative. TIGER II will support African efforts to develop sustainable observation systems by using EO technology that will help to establish a sound scientific basis for developing effective adaptation or mitigation measures against the impacts of climate change.

This year's official observance of the World Day to Combat Desertification is being held in Bonn, Germany. ESA will attend the ceremony to highlight the role of satellites in reversing desertification and land degradation.


'/>"/>

Contact: Mariangela D'Acunto
mariangela.dacunto@esa.int
39-069-418-0856
European Space Agency
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. First ever worldwide census analysis of caribou/reindeer numbers reveals dramatic decline
2. Wildlife Conservation Society supports worlds first study of egg-laying mammal
3. Study finds colorectal cancer rates increasing worldwide
4. Canadian-based UN coral reef expert honored at world meeting in Australia
5. Wiping out the worlds mass migrations
6. Shellfish face an uncertain future in a high CO2 world
7. World-class innovation through international cooperation
8. Hunt for climate-ready crops accelerates as organizations search seed collections worldwide
9. Scientists identify worlds largest leatherback turtle population
10. Researchers gain genome-wide insights into patterns of the worlds human population structures
11. Scientists urge global action to preserve water supplies for billions worldwide
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/1/2016)... NEW YORK , Feb. 1, 2016  Today, ... Heart Association (AHA) announced plans to develop a first ... cognitive computing power of IBM Watson. In the first ... disease, AHA, IBM (NYSE: IBM ), and Welltok ... metrics and health assessments with cognitive analytics, delivered on ...
(Date:1/25/2016)... , Jan. 25, 2016   Unisys Corporation (NYSE: ... John F. Kennedy (JFK) International Airport, New York City ... (CBP) identify imposters attempting to enter the United States ... to them. pilot testing of the system at ... three terminals at JFK during January 2016. --> pilot ...
(Date:1/21/2016)... India , January 21, 2016 ... According to a new market research report "Emotion Detection ... and Others), Software Tools (Facial Expression, Voice Recognition ... Regions - Global forecast to 2020", published by ... is expected to reach USD 22.65 Billion by ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/10/2016)... , Feb.10, 2016 ASAE is introducing a ... Management Companies (AMC) the option of joining or renewing ... fee determined by staff size, every employee in any ... ASAE and reap all available member benefits.   ... new organizational membership options will allow organizations of any ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... ... February 10, 2016 , ... Benchmark Research, a fully-integrated ... of two long-standing principal investigators (PI) to the roles of Chief Medical Officer, ... , Dr. Laurence Chu, a Benchmark Research PI in the Austin office, will ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... February 10, 2016 , ... ... now available on Microsoft Azure. On Azure, Arvados provides capabilities for managing and ... clear demand for Microsoft Azure from major institutions collecting and analyzing genomic data,” ...
(Date:2/9/2016)... FALLS, N.J. , Feb. 9, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... a biotechnology company specializing in the development and ... health of damaged tissues and organs, recently reported ... for the first quarter of 2016. ... began the new 2015 fiscal year in the ...
Breaking Biology Technology: