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18th November 2023 (10 Topics)

Report on Sand and dust storm (SDS) released


According to the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), sand and dust storms are an underappreciated problem now “dramatically” more frequent in some places worldwide, with at least 25% of the phenomenon attributed to human activities.

About the report:

  • UNCCD meeting in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, reviews global progress on Convention implementation.
  • Sand and dust storms (SDS) discussed as a major environmental challenge.

Highlights of the Report:

  • As per the report, two billion tons of sand and dust, equal in weight to 350 Great Pyramids of Giza, enter the atmosphere every year.
  • Key Issues:
    • SDS exacerbated by poor land and water management, droughts, and climate change.
    • Fluctuations in intensity, magnitude, or duration make SDS unpredictable and dangerous.
  • Concerns highlighted:
    • SDS has trans-boundary impacts affecting environment, climate, health, agriculture, and livelihoods.
    • Source areas experience crop damage, livestock impact, and topsoil erosion.
  • Policy Recommendations:
    • UNCCD, FAO, and partners provide guidance through the Sand and Dust Storms Compendium and SDS Toolbox.
    • Recommendations cover data collection, monitoring, early warning, impact mitigation, and anthropogenic source mitigation.

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