Key strategies for the drylands in Ethiopia (Technorati / Zion by the abbay)

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Technorati : desertification

Zion by the abbay

Key strategies for the Drylands and some possibilities for the Ethiopean case

April 19, 2007

As stated earlier, one of the longer term aims for this project would be to extend activities into the lowlands, hopefully helping to establish small community-based projects in different areas of the country, especially the arid lowlands. Establishing a permacutlure centre (with associated eco-tourist-farm project) in the relatively favourable conditions of the highlands will is a strategy for creating a money-generating base from which activities can be extended by training of key people from target communities, backed up by a system of micro-credit finance, followed up with consultation. Eventually a co-operation network could be established to share knowledge and trade resources between extension projects and other endevours going on under different initiatives. If this exists already then it will just be a case of linking up with it.

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Agro-pastoralism in Niger (niger1 / Xinhua / Temoust)

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5 W.African countries (see under Blogroll)



People’s Daily Online – Chine – 17-03-2007

Niger posts better agro-pastoral season

samedi 17 mars 2007, par temoust

Niger has seen a better agro- pastoral season with more harvest of cereals and forage thanks to good weather conditions. The agro-pastoral season which just came to an end was much better than that of the previous year, as it was positive in terms of surplus in cereals as well as in forage, said Bare Hawa, president of the national Food Crisis Prevention and Management Committee, at annual meeting on food crisis management held here Wednesday and Thursday.

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Desertification and sand storms in China (Google News Alert / China Daily)

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Google News Alert for : desertification

China Daily :

Operation blitzkrieg against desert storm

By Wang Ying (China Daily)
Updated: 2007-04-03 06:58

“It was huge, 3,100 square km till the late 1920s. A lifeline of the ancient Silk Road, it was first mapped by ancient Chinese geographers. But the salt lake in the southeastern part of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region has largely dried up today, with marshes and small, shifting lakes receiving the channels of the Tarim River. It’s true, Lop Nur is still there, but at best it can be described as a marshy depression.

Nature’s fury is about to make history repeat itself; this time in Northwest China’s Gansu Province as another tragedy. The Minqin Oasis is still about 1,000 square km, but is shrinking fast. Scarily, its surrounding geographical features are similar to that of Lop Nur. It’s surrounded by the Tengger and Badain Jaran deserts and is vanishing at an alarming the rate of 3 to 4 meters a year, says Gansu Vice-Governor Shi Jun.

Reclaiming of forests and grasslands for agriculture and the unprecedented dry weather of recent years have been blamed for the ecological and economic threat. But the National Conference on Desertification Prevention held in Beijing late last month was determined to not let it disappear. “No stone should be left unturned to stop Minqin from vanishing,” Shi told the conference, the fifth of its kind.

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Ressources végétales en Algérie (

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Les ressources végétales en Algérie:

Au delà de la diversité, des contraintes réelles

“Le fait est indéniable. Les ressources biologiques d’Algérie s’inscrivent dans un espace physique marqué par l’aridité du climat, l’exiguïté des structures agro-foncières au Nord et l’étendue des contrées pâturables vers le Sud. En effet, la superficie utile réservée à l’agriculture (8 millions d’hectares) ne représente, respectivement, que 20 et 3 % de la surface totale réservée à l’agriculture (40.2 millions Ha) et de la superficie totale du territoire national.


Les parcours et les forêts occupent 80 % de l’espace destiné aux activités agricoles. Le territoire valorisé par l’agriculture est caractérisé par une diversité de milieux et de ressources génétiques végétales représentées par un large spectre de taxons et d’espèces exotiques. La position biogéographique de l’Algérie et la structure de ses étages bioclimatiques font de ce pays un gisement relativement important de ressources biologiques qui a eu à subir, par ailleurs, l’influence de diverses civilisations, en termes de flux et d’introduction de taxons et de types génétiques croisés.

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Ressources fourragères en Algérie (

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Les ressources fourragères en Algérie: Déficit structurel et disparités régionale.

Analyse du bilan fourrager pour l’année 2001


Cet article a été extrait d’une étude exhaustive réalisée sur l’ensemble des wilayate de l’Algérie en 2002.

Pour d’amples détails prière contacter le webmaster du Gredaal


L’alimentation constitue, incontestablement, l’une des contraintes majeures à l’essor de l’élevage en Algérie. Un examen détaillé de la structure du bilan fourrager en Algérie a permis de relever que le taux de couverture des besoins du cheptel algérien se situe à moins de 80 % pour une offre estimée à 8 milliards d’unités fourragères en 2001.(Cf. Infra). Ce déficit fourrager a des répercussions négatives sur la productivité des animaux et se traduit par un recours massif aux importations de produits animaux à l’instar des produits laitiers et carnés.

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Lake Chad disappears (Technorati)

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Lake Chad is not the only inland body of water that’s disappearing under the dual assault of climate change and human overuse. Lake Aral, in formerly Soviet Central Asia, is well known for the picturesque images of boats stranded in the desert. I don’t know how fast the process went with Lake Aral, but as this map demonstrates, it’s been mercilessly swift with Lake Chad. The last of these five maps dates from 2001. I even wonder whether six years later there still is a Lake Chad. Gonna check up on that in a minute.

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Desertification in Algeria


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“Algeria is 90% desert, and is at risk of further desertification. Over the years, much of what was lush forestry has been reduced to the stubble of shrubbery and dirt. This process took place over many centuries, but was accelerated by the introduction of European-style agricultural methods in the 1800’s and early 1900’s. Traditional methods tended to try and keep soil erosion at the lowest level possible, as the High Plateaus for instance, the open area that separates northern Algeria from the vast Sahara, were quite dry and prone to such phenomena. This meant shallow digging with simple tools. When the French swarms arrived, they used deep cutting methods over large areas which lead to dusty soil that would wash away with the wind. It continues to this day, though, even with the abandonment of Algeria by the French. Lameen Souag wrote a bit about this in a post early last year. The “green line” he refers to in that post was a planned wall of vegetation, from the coast to the desert, to help combat the expansion of desert areas along the borders of the Sahara. It was abandoned in the 1980’s, having been deemed a failure.

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Pastoralism, traditional knowledge and management in desertification (IUCN / CRIC 5-UNCCD)

22 March 2007

“Indigenous, local people and pastoralists are best positioned to overcome degradation of the world’s drylands. This was one of the key messages that pastoralists, the World Initiative for Sustainable Pastoralism, the World Conservation Union (IUCN) and UNCCD focal points from several Southern African countries communicated to policy makers at a recent conference of the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) in Buenos Aires.

Land degradation and poverty are common phenomena in the world’s drylands. However, inappropriate development has exacerbated the degradation of drylands and in consequence increased poverty. Pastoralists – nomadic herders of sheep, goats and camels – have for centuries used the drylands sustainably. By moving on to new grazing places when resources got scarce, they prevented overgrazing or soil erosion.

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