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DESIRE Project contribution

The DESIRE Project draws the attention to the leaflet "The idea of Sustainable Development, and what it means for achieving zero net-growth in degradation", as a contribution to the theme of the UNCCD's Land Day 5.


The DESIRE Project suggests that the UNCCD call to reduce land degradation rapidly to a state of zero growth is not dependent on advances in science and technology, but rather on the uptake of science by decision makers; those with power and finance. There are many issues such as non-enforcement of legislation or land tenure problems that often get in the way of the achievement of sustainable land management. However, DESIRE can help by identifying such issues and providing the methodology to select appropriate technologies.

Read the DESIRE leaflet on zero net-growth online, and/or download it from:

The DESIRE Project has consulted with stakeholders to select a range of sustainable land management (SLM) options at study sites around the world, according to a circular framework.

WOCAT methodology has been used to identify, evaluate and select SLM options, and these were then trialled over at least two years. The results and conclusions are currently being disseminated to a wide range of stakeholders, from land users to policy makers. If technology options are not as successful as hoped for, of if the context (perhaps the climate) changes, the selection process can be repeated in this cyclical process to promote adaptive management. Further information see the DESIRE Harmonised Information System and especially a new booklet: "Using land for the benefit of all":

DESIRE addresses the aims of not only the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification, but also the United Nations conventions for Climate Change and Biological Diversity, and the United Nations Forum on Forests. The basic premise common to DESIRE and all of these Conventions is the urgency for sustainable use of natural resources, from local to global scales. Water scarcity, land degradation, desertification, drought, agricultural production and climate change are intricately linked, and need to be considered in conjunction. Various scientific results and models suggest that action is needed now, to prevent irreparable damage to the environment. The big challenge for scientists is to present probabilities and possibilities based on science, in the context of a wider debate, including the impact on economic development.

For more information:
Nichola Geeson
Leading Dissemination in the DESIRE Project
DESIRE website:
DESIRE Harmonised Information System:


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