India : 81.4 million-hectare area is undergoing desertification (Google / MSN)

Read at : Google Alert – desertification

Desertification affecting 81.4 million-hectare area in India

New Delhi, Dec 13 (PTI) Desertification is affecting an 81.4 million-hectare area in the country, Parliament was informed today.

The findings came to light on account of desertification and land mapping carried out by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), Minister of State for Agriculture Harish Rawat said in a written reply to the Lok Sabha.

“ISRO has carried out desertification and land degradation mapping on a 1:500,000 scale using Indian Remote Sensing Satellites data of 2003-05 time frame, which indicates that an 81.4 million-hectare area of the country is undergoing a process of desertification,” Rawat said.

To prevent soil erosion, desertification and to maintain balance in different type of land uses, the government of India has worked out an action plan for development under various watershed development programmes, the minister added.


Author: Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.

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