A selection of UN TV programmes, webcasts and video clips on issues in the news

Sunday, 15 June 2014

World Day to Combat Desertification 2014, June 17.

World Day to Combat Desertification,  Día Mundial de Lucha contra la Desertificación, Всемирный день борьбы с опустыниванием и засухой, 防治荒漠化和干旱世界日, Journée mondiale de la lutte contre la désertification et la sécheresse , اليوم العالمي لمكافحة التصحر

World Day Against Desertification  2014 Poster

Land degradation, caused or exacerbated by climate change, is not only a danger to livelihoods, but also a threat to peace and stability.  The warning signs lie in conflict between pastoralists and subsistence farmers competing for more productive land and communities fighting over increasingly scarce water resources.  We see the symptoms of insecurity in global food market volatility, internal displacement and mass migration.
While land degradation is acutely felt in the world’s arid lands, some 80 per cent is actually occurring outside these areas.  More than 1.5 billion people subsist on land that is degrading – the majority of whom are small farmers.  Climate change directly threatens their productivity.  In many regions, freshwater resources are declining, food-growing areas are shifting and crop yields are faltering.

Globally, unpredictable and extreme weather is predicted to have an even greater impact on food production.  With world population rising, it is urgent that we work to build the resilience of all productive land resources and the communities that depend on them.  We need to manage the land sustainably, avoid further degradation, and reclaim and repair that which has been damaged.  More than 2 billion hectares of land have potential for restoration and rehabilitation.  We need to inspire action that will prompt the recovery of these areas.

Recovering land that is degrading will have multiple benefits.  We can avert the worst effects of climate change, produce more food and ease competition over resources.  We can preserve vital ecosystem services, such as water retention, which protects us from floods or droughts.  And a comprehensive and large-scale approach to land recovery can create new jobs, business opportunities and livelihoods, allowing populations to not only survive but thrive.

The theme of this year’s World Day to Combat Desertification is “Land belongs to the future, let’s climate-proof it”.  It can be done, as communities in Burkina Faso, Niger and Mali have shown by recovering more than 5 million hectares of degraded land.  Let us take inspiration from these and other examples and protect and nurture the land for this and future generations. 

Ban Ki-moon

Land belongs to the future, let's climate proof it.


" Land belongs to the future, let's climate proof it! " is the theme of the World Day to Combat Desertification, 17 June 2014.
About the World Day to Combat Desertification

In 1994, the United Nations General Assembly declared (A/RES/49/115) June 17 the "World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought" to promote public awareness of the issue, and the implementation of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification in those countries experiencing serious drought and/or desertification, particularly in Africa. It is a unique occasion to remind everybody that desertification can be effectively tackled, that solutions are possible, and that key tools to this aim lay in strengthened community participation and co-operation at all levels.

About the UN Decade for Deserts and the Fight a gainst Desertification With more lands around the world facing increasing deterioration and degradation, the United Nations General Assembly declared 2010-2020 the United Nations Decade for Deserts and the Fight against Desertification. There are two objectives for this period: to raise awareness about the causes of and solutions to desertification and land degradation; and to mobilize resources for special initiatives to achieve this objective.

Земля принадлежит будущему — защитим ее от изменения климата, Всемирный день борьбы с опустыниванием и засухой ,17 июня 2014 года

“土地属于未来,让其不受气候变化影响” , 防治荒漠化和干旱世界日, 6月17日
Land belongs to the future let’s climate proof it - 17 June 2014 World Day to Combat Desertification

موضوع العام 2014 — تربتنا مستقبلنا، فلنحمها من تغير المناخ

La Terre est notre Avenir préservons-la des changements climatiques, 17 juin 2014 Journée mondiale de la lutte contre la désertification

La tierra pertenece al futuro, protejámosla del cambio climático, Día Mundial de Lucha contra la Desertificación, 17 de Junio.

About the UNCCD

Desertification, along with climate change and the loss of biodiversity, were identified as the greatest challenges to sustainable development during the 1992 Rio Earth Summit. Established in 1994, UNCCD
is the sole legally binding international agreement linking environment, development and the promotion of healthy soils. The Convention’s 195 signatory Parties work to alleviate poverty in the
drylands, maintain and restore the land’s productivity, and mitigate the effects of drought.

Global temperatures are rising. This is now well understood. But climate change is not only about the planet heating up. Global warming brings more extreme weather events such as prolonged droughts and floods. As a result, farmers produce less food, livestock herders have less grass to feed cattle, and communities become more vulnerable. Building up resilience is particularly important in the drylands where people living in poverty depend heavily on the productivity of their land and the many benefits it provides. Desertification, defined as land degradation in drylands, is a major challenge being exacerbated by climate change.

While we must continue to reduce our carbon footprint, we must also learn to adapt. The good news is that with the right interventions, we can turn the vicious cycle of climate change and desertification into a virtuous cycle of productive land and reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.

By strengthening biodiversity and ecosystem services through sustainable land management, we can help people adapt to the adverse effects of climate change. For ecosystem-based adaptation, land and soil play an important role. Healthy soil not only ensures steady food production, but increases resilience in the face of incremental changes in temperature and rainfall as well as disasters and extreme weather events.
Healthy soil also stores more carbon which helps mitigate climate change impacts.

 Implementing ecosystem-based adaptation through sustainable land management practices does not have to be difficult or expensive.For example, Farmer Managed Natural Regeneration is a low-cost, sustainable land restoration technique which promotes the regeneration of trees and shrubs and thus increasing productivity and resilience. Holistic Management is another example that facilitates the natural recovery of grasslands through livestock planning and monitoring. There are many success stories of land restoration and its sustainable management that support the effectiveness of ecosystem-based adaptation and even have other co-benefits like increasing food security.

In many cases ecosystem based adaptation strategies are potentially more cost-effective than other hard engineered adaptation options,yet they are often overlooked.

The theme of 2014 World Day to Combat Desertification (WDCD) is ecosystem-based adaptation.

About the World Day Against Desertification- UNCCD
The 2014 WDCD highlights the benefits of mainstreaming sustainable land management policies and practices into our collective response to climate change.
Call to action for the World Day Against Desertification 2014
The Objectives of the 2014 World Day to Combat Desertification - UNCCD

With the slogan ‘Land Belongs to the Future, Let’s Climate Proof It’, the 2014 WDCD highlights the benefits of mainstreaming sustainable land management policies and practices into our collective response to climate change. Sustainable land management increases both community and ecosystem resilience while improving the human condition particularly in the drylands.

The objectives of the 2014 WDCD are to:
1. Increase the attention given to land and soil within climate change adaptation
2. Mobilize support forsustainable land management
3. Call for the inclusion of land and soil and their significance in food security into national climate change adaptation policies.

Many claim that we have entered a new geological period in our planet’s history, the anthropocene. For the first time, the major driver of change on Earth is human activity, specifically the unsustainable use of our natural resources.
We still have time to reverse these trends, and for this to happen, sustainable land management is our pathway to change. We, as consumers and land users, have contributed to the acceleration of climate change. We now need to be part of the solution

Call to action

The 2014 WDCD campaign will kick-off on the African Environment Day/Wangari Maathai Day on 3 March. The kick-off combines the observance of the UN Decade for Desert and the Fight against Desertification (2010-2020).

The events planned for the global observance include: exhibitions of various kinds; the announcement of the 2014 Land for Life Award winners and the 2014 National Drylands Champions;
the release of a cartoon animation of success full and rehabilitation activities; and infographics featuring innovative actions to climate-proof land as well as the observance events for 2014 planned by various actors in countries that are party to the Convention.
The place and venue for the global observance will be announced in early 2014.

WDCD is an occasion for countries to honour National Dryland Champions.

These are individuals or institutions that have made a worthy practical contribution to sustainable land management practices. Under the Dryland Champions motto “I am part of the solution,” the initiative focuses first and foremost on people, their commitment and endeavors to improve the livelihoods of populations and the conditions of ecosystems affected by desertification and drought.

Join us in observing the 2014 World Day to Combat Desertification. If you plan to host an event, send us a short paragraph with information about the date, venue and planned activity.

It will be posted on our website as part of the global country-by-country infographic.

Please join us in spreading the word about the Day.

For further information,
Awareness Raising, Education and Communication Unit
United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD)
P.O.Box 260129,
53153 Bonn, Germany

World Day to Combat Desertification Observance Event

Afternoon Programme 13h00-18h00,  World Bank, Washington DC; Preston Auditorium - WDCD 2014 Global Observance event
Morning Programme 8h30- 13h00,  World Bank, Washington DC; Preston Auditorium - WDCD 2014 Global Observance event
Tuesday, 17 June, 2014 - World Bank, Washington DC; Preston Auditorium - WDCD 2014 Global Observance event
Events around the World 2014

​ The slogan for the 2014 World Day to Combat Desertification is “Land belongs to the future - let's climate proof it." See how different stakeholders celebrated the Day and what events and activities took place in different parts of the world. If you marked the Day, but cannot find yourself on the list, please send us a note with information about your events to secretariat(at)



The Government of Burundi has decided to observe the World Environment Day and the World Day to Combat Desertification together on 14 June this year. On that day, the 2014-2015 campaign on forest will be launched by Director General of Forests and Environment.


On the occasion of the World Day to Combat Desertification, the All Africa Students Union (AASU), an NGO based in Ghana has called upon the African youth, especially students, to imbibe a sense of voluntarism and participate in the efforts to combat desertification and drought. Recognizing the special status of Africa as with regard to the issue of land degradation, and the need to adapt, AASU urged African governments to implement national and regional strategies to combat desertification. Statement


Kenya will mark the World day to Combat Desertification  in Mwea Kirinyaga County, a Semi-Arid ecosystem that is depended on water from the slopes of Mount Kenya, a montane ecosystem, critical in supporting livelihoods downstream. Some of the efforts to climate proof have been through irrigation initiatives to produce rice to boost national food security. Kirinyaga County is therefore relevant in showcasing sustainable land management in Kenya.


Mali holds several observance activities starting from 5 June, World Environment Day and end with 17 June, the World Day to Combat Desertification. The series of events will be launched in the even of the World Environment Day in the 4th Administrative Region of Mali, Segou. This event will be coupled with the launch of the national reforestation campaign from 2014 to 2015 under the initiative of the Prime Minister. During the period, the issues that will be addressed, among others, are: sustainable land management (SLM) / Climate Change, Sustainable Development, Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM), waste management, access drinking water, Public-Private Partnership in the management of natural resources and forest.
On 17 June, the Minister of the Environment will deliver a speech on the occasion of the World Day to Combat Desertification and film screenings are scheduled in addition to other activities.


The Réseau Associatif de Développement Durable des Oasis (RADDO) will organize in Tinjdad, Errachidia the conference entitled "collective oasis lands : what's their future? with participants from Algeria, Mauritania, Morocco and Tunis. A field trip will also be organized. More


The Nigerian NGO "Nigeria goes green" is marking this year's WDCD with an Award dinner to honor those who contributed in the fight against Desertification in Nigeria. Announcement 



China will observe and promote the day thru various channels and events. Since June 10, a TV Public Service Advertisement for awareness raising will be broadcasted in all 18 channels of CCTV with the theme of “Change Desert Into Oasis”. In the same vain, the Public Service Advertisement about the national hero of combating desertification will be broadcasted around June 17.The minister of SFA will get coverage by XinHua News agency

An article by Mr. Zhou Shucong will be released in People's daily and Green Times both Chinese newspapers. The Vice Minister of State Forestry Administration will appear on television (CCTV), scheduled on 17 June, and explain the present situation and future work on desertification. An online interactive dialogue among scientist and the public on desertification will be hosted by the Micro blog(Weibo) of the state Forestry Administration on June 17. Success stories and approaches on how to combat Desertification as well as on the progress made in China  will be the main topic at   theMicro blogs of and People daily.


On the occassion of the WDCD 2014 Iran will organize a meeting and a field trip to a desertified area. A special newsletter for WCDC will be also prepared.


For the World Day to Combat Desertification, Kuwait provided a brief overwiev of the current afforestation campaign implemented throughout the State of Kuwait.Thanks to the afforestation projects, new trees and new varieties of trees have been introduced for the first time into the country. The construction of modern irrigation systems has also marked another significant development in the process of combating desertification in Kuwait.  Brief report

Republic of Korea

The Korea Forest Service, in collaboration with the National Assembly of the Republic of Korea, is organizing the International Symposium on Combating Desertification in observance of the 2014 WDCD. It will bring together policy makers to discuss future directions of national policies relating to combating desertification, raise public awareness about the adverse affects of desertification and also to promote public-private partnership in the field. Programme/ Poster


 the Green consultancy comapny Ecogreen Marché will be hosting the “1st World Day to Combat Desertification (Singapore) 2014” event on 27 June, 2014.
Ecogreen Marché will be showcasing their solutions to  combat desertification on a global scale. 


 On WDCD, Thailands National Focal Point Agency in cooperation with the Saoil and water Conservation Society of Theialnd will organize a seminar with the aim to promote awarness raising and better cooperation among stakeholders for the UNCCD implementation. Programme


On 16-17 June, 2014 Turkmenistan will host the inter-regional Conference on issues of desertification in Central Asia. The government of Turkmenistan invites public officials, academic and community and non-governmental organizations from five Central Asian countries as well as reputed experts and representatives of international organizations, to discuss issues of desertification in Central Asia. The meeting is sponsored and organized by the Government of Turkmenistan with the support of the Secretariat of the UN Convention to Combat Desertification. The participants will get familiar with international experience in the area of assessment of ecosystems services and ecosystems based adaptation. The issue of the regional cooperation among five affected Central Asian countries will be broadly discussed to provide impetus for further actions. The study tour to learn the experience on afforestation in Turkmenistan will also complement the meeting.



In Hungary every year an expert meeting is organized on the occasion of the World Day to Combat Desertification. This year the General Directorate for Water Management will host the event on 17th June 2014. Hungarian experts, stakeholders and decision makers in the field of drought management, climate change adaptation, agriculture, meteorology are invited to the meeting. About 50 participants from the government, STIs and CSOs are expected to attend the consultation and representatives from the media will also be invited to inform the larger audience.
At the expert meeting the following topics will be discussed:  
1. Increase the attention given to land and soil within climate change adaptation
2. Mobilize support for sustainable land management
3. Call for the inclusion of land and soil and their significance in food security into national climate change adaptation policies.


On the occasion of the 2014 WDCD and in the context of the 149th session of the FAO Council, the Government of Italy, FAO and the GM are celebrating the inauguration of the GM’s Office at FAO with a side event on “Land for Life – How Sustainable Land Management can Improve People’s Livelihood and Resilience”. The side event will highlight activities of FAO, UNCCD and the Governments of Italy and Kuwait to combat desertification, land degradation and drought and present the priorities of the newly established GM office at FAO.
See the programme and flyer


On June 17th 2014, the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation and Initiatives of Change International are organising a public event to celebrate the World Day to Combat Desertification 2014 in collaboration with UNCCD, the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and the Centre for Development and Environment (CDE)/WOCAT. The objective of the event is to raise awareness on the issue of desertification and to introduce the concept of ecosystem-based adaptation to climate change. See the poster


Currently relevant activities are being preparing by respective governmental bodies and scientific organizations. Ukrain will observe the WDCD 2014 through several events and activities.
The  National Academy of Agrarian Sciences of Ukraine (NAASU) for instance, has planed to organize 18 events at the occasion of the WDCD including, among others:
-  5-th International Conference “Combination of Research, Education, and Practice Production and Fair Selling High-quality Organic Products” (Organizer – National Scientific Centre “Institute of Agriculture of  NAASU”,  Date – 17.06.2014
- Workshop “Combating DLDD in the context of climate change” (Organizer –Institute of Agroecology  and Nature Resources Use of  NAASU,  Date – 17.06.2014
- Round Table “Combating DLDD for Sustainable Development of Agriculture of the Region” (Organizer – Biosphere Reserve “Askania – Nova” of NAASU,  Date – 17.06.2014,
MENR is preparing a special publication on the WDCD, UNCCD process and DLDD issues to the Ukrainian Geographical Journal.
A press-release on the WDCD will be distributed by MENR among different mass-media and relevant information will be placed on the Web-page of MENR.

Latin American and the Caribbean


The Argentinean NGO Fundacion Agreste in collaboration with the University of Moròn and the Instituto de Estudios ambientales sociales y Resolución de conflictos will organize an event to celebrate June 17 and present the conclusions of the Environmental Management Indicators for the Republic of Argentina. More
The Ministry of Education of Argentina will show on its channel "Canal Encuentro" an environmental video focussing on climate change and desertification. More 


Brazil is celebrating the World Day to Combat Desertification with the Brazilian match in the World Cup this year. Ministry of Environment will observe the World Day at an event on 16 June, in which the Ministry will recognize the national Dryland Champions winners as part of the programme.


The National Forest Commission (CONAFOR) will celebrate the WDCD organizing a conference with representatives of FAO Mexico, Parliamentarians and representatives from the Water National Commission and the National Institute for climate change. The CONAFOR is also organizing an exhibition with information posters from environmental and academic institutions from Mexico and other Latin American countries. Agenda of the meeting


As part of the celebrations of the 2014 WDCD, Piura Regional Government and AIDER are organizing a workshop about REDD+ as a a financial alternative for dry forests. This event will take place from 11 to 13 June in the city of Piura, with financial support of the Environment Ministery and the Sustainable Forest Management Program of the Interamerican Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA).
Introduction /Agenda

Other Regions


The UNCCD secretariat is organizing the global observance of the World Day to Combat Desertification in Washington DC this year, which will be hosted at the World Bank in partnership with the Global Environment Facility (GEF), TerrAfrica and Connect4Climate. The event is open to public.


No comments:

Post a Comment