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Important dates

Early '70s Drought in sub-Saharan Africa - Over 200,000 people and millions of animals die
September 1973 Inter-State Permanent Committee on Drought Control in the Sahel (CILSS) established by 9 Sahelian countries
August - September 1977 United Nations Conference on Desertification (UNCOD) held in Nairobi, Kenya - Desertification addressed as a worldwide problem for the first time and a Plan of Action to Combat Desertification (PACD) adopted
June 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil - The Earth Summit and Agenda 21 call on the UN General Assembly to set up an inter-governmental committee to prepare for a legally binding instrument that addresses the problem of desertification
June 17, 1994 United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) adopted in Paris, France
December 1996 The UNCCD enters into force, 90 days after the 50th ratification is received
October 1997 COP 1 in Rome, Italy - Rules governing the COP and its subsidiary bodies established, the functions of the Global Mechanism set forth and the permanent secretariat designated
December 1998 COP 2 in Senegal, Dakar - Consultations on the medium-term strategy of the secretariat. Declaration of the first round table of Members of Parliaments on desertification
January 1999 Permanent secretariat of the UNCCD established in Bonn, Germany
November 1999 COP 3 in Recife, Brazil. "Recife Initiative" on commitments to enhance the implementation of the UNCCD launched.   
December 2000 COP 4 in Bonn, Germany - Implementation annex for Central and Eastern Europe (Annex V) adopted and the "Declaration on the commitments under the Convention", as follow up to the "Recife Initiative" approved.
March - April 2001 Intersessional meeting of the ad hoc working group (AHWG) in Bonn, Germany. Building on a review of national and other reports, a comprehensive report on further steps in the implementation of the Convention is adopted and submitted to COP 5
October 2001 COP 5 in Geneva, Switzerland - CRIC established as a subsidiary body of the COP. Reform of the CST is adopted and a Group of Experts is established
August - September 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD), Johannesburg, South Africa - Governments call on the Global Environment Facility (GEF) to become a financial mechanism of the UNCCD
October 2002 Second Assembly of the GEF in Beijing, China, adopts a decision to designate land degradation as its fifth focal area and to establish the GEF as a financial mechanism of the UNCCD
November 2002 CRIC 1 in Rome, Italy - Innovative solutions to combat desertification are identified and shared. A report is adopted and will be submitted to COP6
August - September 2003 COP 6 in Havana, Cuba - The Global Environment Facility (GEF) designated as a financial mechanism of the Convention; CRIC 2 recommendations on ways to improve the implementation of the Convention endorsed
May 2005 CRIC 3 in Bonn, Germany. New ways mapped to mainstream desertification.
October 2005 COP 7, CST 7 and CRIC 4 are held in Nairobi, Kenya

International Year of Deserts and Desertification

March 2007​ CRIC 5 in Buenos Aires, Argentina ​
September 2007

COP8, CST 8 and CRIC 6 are held in Madrid, Spain. Country Parties adopt the ten-year strategic plan and framework to enhance the implementation of the Convention (2008–2018, the Strategy). In November, an extra session of the COP is held in New York for budget considerations.

November 2008 CST S-1 and CRIC 7 are held in Istanbul, Turkey. 
September 2009​ First UNCCD scientific conference is held in Buenos Aires, Argentina, on the theme "Bio-physical and socio-economic monitoring and assessment of desertification and land degradation, to support decision-making in land and water management". ​
September 2009

COP 9, CST 9 and CRIC 8 are held in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Parties decide on the framework for assessing the implementation of the Strategy and further define the work of the subsidiary bodies.  

February 2011​
CST S-2 and CRIC 9 are held in Bonn, Germany.  First review of performance towards the operational objectives of the Startegy is carried out. ​CST continues the development of impact indicators.
Septermber 2011​ United Nations General Assembly high level meeting on desertification, land degradation and drought​ (DLDD) brings together world leaders to debate on the importance of addressing DLDD for sustainable development and poverty eradication.
October 2011​ COP 10, CST 10 and CRIC 10 are held in Changwon, Republic of Korea, with largest-ever number of participants. ​Parties agree on tools for the first UNCCD impact monitoring and continue the institutional reform. Several partnerships addressing land degradation from different aspects, including the "Changwon Initiative", are launched.  

September 2013                           COP 11, Windhoek, Namibia.


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