What is desertification and how does it relate to South Africa?

Desertification is, “land degradation in arid, semi-arid, and dry sub-humid areas resulting from various factors, including climatic variations and human activities”. … Desertification processes affect about 46% of Africa.

What is desertification and how is it affecting Africa?

Desertification affects about 46 percent of Africa. … Agriculture in Africa tends to result in low productivity, as most of the land is characterized as a semi-desert. Clearing the land of trees also reduces the structure of the soil. Coupled with wind erosion, the topsoil blows away and leaves a desert-like land.

What is desertification explain?

Desertification refers to the persistent degradation of dryland ecosystems by climatic variations and human activities. … Desertification occurs as a result of a long-term failure to balance human demand for ecosystem services and the amount the ecosystem can supply.

What is the desertification and what causes it?

The United Nations’ official definition says desertification is land degradation in typically dry areas resulting from various factors, including climatic variations and human activities. … Many things can cause desertification. Drought, overgrazing, fire, and deforestation can thin out vegetation, leaving exposed soil.

Why is desertification in Africa?

Fire is a primary cause of desertification in the Sahel region of North Africa, where the degradation of drylands is especially pronounced. The degradation of drylands in Africa is forcing people who can no longer make a living off the land to move to urban areas.

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Why is desertification so bad in Africa?

It has been estimated that 319 million hectares of Africa are vulnerable to desertification hazards due to sand movement. … Deforestation exposes the soil to high temperatures which break down the organic matter, increase evaporation and make the soils vulnerable to erosion.

What is the importance of desertification?

Vegetation and its diversity are key for soil conservation and for the regulation of surface water and local climate. Desertification also contributes to global climate change by releasing to the atmosphere carbon stored in dryland vegetation and soils.

How can desertification affect humans?

Land degradation and desertification can affect human health through complex pathways. As land is degraded and deserts expand in some places, food production is reduced, water sources dry up and populations are pressured to move to more hospitable areas. … the spread of infectious diseases as populations migrate.

How can desertification be prevented?

Strategies to reduce desertification

  1. Planting more trees – the roots of trees hold the soil together and help to reduce soil erosion from wind and rain.
  2. Improving the quality of the soil – this can be managed by encouraging people to reduce the number of grazing animals they have and grow crops instead.

What are the impacts of desertification?

“In many countries, desertification means a decline in soil fertility, a reduction in vegetation cover – especially grass cover – and more invasive shrub species. Practically speaking, the consequences of this are less available land for grazing, and less productive soils.

How does desertification affect economy?

World Atlas of Desertification

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As the world develops economically and its population increases, pressure on land resources is increasing. … Land degradation causes a decline in land productivity and is therefore likely to lead to increased levels of poverty.

What is desertification short answer?

Desertification refers to the process of fertile land becoming unproductive. This means that the land struggles to grow any type of vegetation due to lack of minerals and nutrients in the soil.

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