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End of Desertification?

Condition: BRAND NEW
ISBN: 9783642160134
Author(s): Roy L. Behnke
Format: Hardcover
Year: 2016
Edition: 2012th
Publisher: Springer-Verlag Berlin and Heidelberg GmbH & Co. KG
Dimensions: 155 x 0 x 235 (w x l x h)
Pages: 568
Series: Springer Earth System Sciences

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Description:
The question in the title of this book draws attention to the shortcomings of a concept that has become a political tool of global importance even as the scientific basis for its use grows weaker. The concept of desertification, it can be argued, has ceased to be analytically useful and distorts our understanding of social-environmental systems and their resiliency, particularly in poor countries with variable rainfall and persistent poverty. For better policy and governance, we need to reconsider the scientific justification for international attempts to combat desertification. Our exploration of these issues begins in the Sahel of West Africa, where a series of severe droughts at the end of the 20th century led to the global institutionalization of the idea of desertification. It now seems incontrovertible that these droughts were not caused primarily by local land use mismanagement, effectively terminating a long-standing policy and scientific debate. There is now an opportunity to treat this episode as an object lesson in the relationship between science, the formation of public opinion and international policy-making.
Looking beyond the Sahel, the chapters in this book provide case studies from around the world that examine the use and relevance of the desertification concept. Despite an increasingly sophisticated understanding of dryland environmen
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