Signatories to the UN Convention to Combat Desertification began presenting reports yesterday at an international conference in Senegal on their efforts to stop land degradation and reduce the effects of drought.
The interim secretariat of this UN convention, established in 1997, said in a statement yesterday that the oral progress reports at this second conference would be put in writing and in greater detail for the next meeting, scheduled for the second half of 1999.
The review will allow governments, it said, to direct their efforts at areas with the highest priority in fighting desertification. The third conference will place emphasis on Africa, it said, where 73 percent of the continent is severely or moderately desertified.
Officials from the 150 countries represented at the Dakar conference will also discuss relations with the Global Environment Facility (GEF), a multi-billion-dollar fund set up by the international community in 1990. At its first assembly in April, the GEF decided it could fund efforts to combat desertification so long as the projects were linked to its core areas of interest: climate change, biodiversity, international waters or depletion of the ozone layer.
Under the Convention, countries affected by desertification must work with the population and adapt their legal, institutional and policies so that local communities partake actively in fighting desertification. Developed nations and donor agencies are expected to improve coordination with the affected countries when offering financial and technical help.
This article was produced by IRIN News while it was part of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. Please send queries on copyright or liability to the UN. For more information: https://shop.un.org/rights-permissions
Help make quality journalism about crises possible
The New Humanitarian is an independent, non-profit newsroom founded in 1995. We deliver quality, reliable journalism about crises and big issues impacting the world today. Our reporting on humanitarian aid has uncovered sex scandals, scams, data breaches, corruption, and much more.
Our readers trust us to hold power in the multi-billion-dollar aid sector accountable and to amplify the voices of those impacted by crises. We’re on the ground, reporting from the front lines, to bring you the inside story.
We keep our journalism free – no paywalls – thanks to the support of donors and readers like you who believe we need more independent journalism in the world. Your contribution means we can continue delivering award-winning journalism about crises.