Desertification is a global phenomenon that many countries suffer from, and it is defined as the degradation of land and soil in dry, arid and semi-humid areas, which causes the loss of biodiversity and plant life in them. In this article, we will talk about the phenomenon of desertification in the Arab world, its causes, and ways to reduce it.
Causes of desertification
- Overgrazing and excessive grazing, which leads to depriving the land of its plants and weeds.
- Excessive exploitation of the land, which leads to soil weakness and depletion.
- Cutting down forest trees that help hold soil particles together.
- Wrong and poor irrigation methods.
Desertification in the Arab world
Desertification covers about 9.7 million square meters of the total area of the Arab world, or about 68% of it, and there are about 500 million hectares of fertile lands that have turned into deserts; Because of environmental and human factors, in addition to more than 900 million people who are threatened by poverty, drought, and economic backwardness.
Drought is the prevailing climatic feature in the Arab countries, where dry and very dry conditions prevail in about 89%, while the remaining areas are arid and semi-humid areas. Arid, about 800 mm per year, and rainfall in each region is characterized by rapid change in seasonal variation, areal distribution, and fluctuation between years, and it changes throughout the growing seasons. There are large areas in most of the Arabian Peninsula covered with shifting sands, which represent about 36.9% of the area of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and 70% of the territory of Iraq is dominated by a dry desert climate.
Ways to reduce desertification
- Rationalizing the use of natural resources, through television channels and various publications.
- Taking appropriate measures for the use of agricultural lands, including not draining the soil, and regulating the vegetation cover.
- Increase planting of plants and trees, and not excessive cutting of forest trees.
- erecting necessary dams and fences; In order to prevent soil erosion during heavy rains and torrential rains.
- Reducing overgrazing.
- Plowing the land first of winter.
- Creation of lakes and ponds in order to collect water.
- Developing human capabilities, through the use of modern technology, and training specialists in it in order to combat the phenomenon of desertification and limit its spread, such as the use of a remote sensing system; To determine the places where water and minerals are available in the ground.
The phenomenon of desertification in the Arab world