Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS


Arid and semi-arid regions cover one third of the continental areas on earth. These regions are very sensitive to a variety of physical, chemical and biological degradation processes collectively called desertification. Although interest in desertification has varied widely in time, there is a renewed concern about the evolution of dryland ecosystems because (1) a significant fraction of existing drylands already suffers from miscellaneous degradation processes, (2) increasing populations will inevitably result in further over-utilisation of the remaining productive areas, (3) climatic changes expected from the greenhouse warming might result in drier continental interiors, and (4) some of the desertification processes themselves may amplify local or regional climatic changes. This paper reviews some of the many aspects of this issue in the context of the Global Change research programme.

Additional information

Authors: VERSTRAETE M M, JRC Ispra (IT);SCHWARTZ S A, University of Michigan, Department of Atmospheric, Oceanic and Space Sciences, Ann Arbor (US)
Bibliographic Reference: Article: Vegetatio, Vol. 91 (1991) pp. 3-13
Record Number: 199110762 / Last updated on: 1994-12-02
Original language: en
Available languages: en