United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification

The 1994 UN Treaty to Avert Desertification is the first universal agreement that links conservational defense, economic growth, and sustainable terrestrial management (UNCCD). The drylands, also known as dry, semi-dry, and dry sub-humid areas, are home to some of the most vulnerable ecosystems and inhabitants, and they are specifically addressed by the Convention.

The Convention was acknowledged in Paris, France, on June 17, 1994, and went into upshot in December 1996. It is the only treaty that was unswervingly recommended by Agenda 21 at the Rio Conference. It is the only globally enforceable creation reputable to deal with the delinquent of desertification.

What is Desertification?

Desertification is the term used to describe how dry and semidry lands' genetic efficiency is declining due to anthropogenic or natural influences. It does not mean that prevailing deserts will grow. Deforestation, excessive farming, excessive grazing, inconsiderate irrigation methods, etc. are a few factors contributing to desertification.

The States Parties

The European Union, all 193 UN members, the Cook Islands, Niue, and the State of Palestine have all endorsed the UNCCD. Canada was the first nation to leave the conference on March 28, 2013. Yet three years later, on December 21, 2016, Canada responded the convention, reversing its extraction. As a result, on March 21, 2017, Canada once again became a party to the convention. The one state that is not a party to the convention and is therefore entitled to accede to it is the Holy See (Vatican City).

The Science and Technology Committee

A Commission on Science and Technology has been reputable by the UN Convention to Fight Desertification (CST). According to Article 24 of the Agreement, the CST was established as a subordinate body of the COP, and during the Conference of the Parties' debut session in 1997, its mission and terms of reference were acknowledged and adopted.

It is made up of government officials skilled in the disciplines vital to halt desertification and lessen the possessions of drought. The group suggests measures to improve researcher collaboration as well as research goals. All parties are welcome to contribute, and it is multidisciplinary. It meets concurrently with the COP's regular meetings.

The CST accumulates, assesses, and inspects pertinent data. Through appropriate sub-regional, provincial, and national institutions, as well as in particular through its investigate and expansion activities, which contribute to greater acquaintance of the processes triggering desertification and drought as well as their impacts, it also inspires cooperation in the field of combating desertification and justifying the possessions of drought.

Conferences of the Parties

The Convention's execution is administered by the Conference of the Parties (COP). All ratifying governments are represented in it, which the Convention recognized as the top governing body.

COP 13

In Ordos, China, from September 6 to 16, 2017, the Conference of Parties (COP 13) to the UN Convention to Avert Desertification (UNCCD) held its thirteenth session. In order to improve and effectively implement the Convention, the

COP 14

The 14th Conference of Parties (COP 14) for the UNCCD concluded on September 13, 2019. India hosted the UNCCD COP for the first time this year. India, one of the hand-picked few nations to have hosted their individual COPs, accommodated the three Rio meetings on climate variation, biodiversity, and land.

The country parties have decided to generate the national action plan for the Sustainable Growth Goal of attaining land deprivation neutrality by 2030.The Drought Toolbox has been reputable as a one-stop shop for all drought-related actions. It's a sort of acquaintance bank with resources that assist communities develop the land administration skills they need to become more resilient to drought as well as resources that help nations improved plan for drought and decrease its significances.

A program called 3S, which stances for sustainability, stability, and security, has been created by 14 African nations to combat relocation that is caused by land deprivation. The restoration of the land and the creation of green jobs for settlers and vulnerable populations are the key objectives. In order to fetch composed youth promoters from all over the world, develop their capacity, share associate, create networks, and evocatively engage them in the UNCCD processes, the global Youth Caucus on Desertification and Land conducted its first formal assembly alongside the UNCCD COP14.

Programs at the National, Regional, and Sub-Regional Levels

One of the main apparatuses for executing the treaty is the National Action Plan (NAP). Action programs at the sub-regional (SRAP) and regional (RAP) levels help to support them. National Action Plans, which outline the exact processes and actions to be taken to avert desertification in certain ecosystems, are created within the framework of an involved approach that engages the local populations.

2018–30 UNCCD Strategy Framework

The Addis Abeba Action Agenda and the 2030 Agenda for Supportable Growth were both recapped in the UNCCC 2018-30 strategy agenda., which is a crucial part of it. It also noted the substantial impact that UNCCD execution will have on the overall accomplishment of their goals.

The strategy plan for UNCCC 2018–30 highlights the following points −

  • Apprehending both the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the UNCCD goals.

  • Specifically, by 2030, achieve the purposes of Sustainable Growth Goal 15.

  • Intensification in ecosystem quality and services.

  • The strategic goals include

    • Improvement for impacted environments

    • Fighting the spread of deserts

    • Supervision the environment sustainably

    • Enhancement in the inhabitants' quality of life

    • Supervision, adaptation, and reduction of drought's consequences

    • Formation of global environmental advantages

    • Mobilization of significant and additional financial resources, as well as non-financial ones, to carry out the UNCCD's goals


Land that has been tarnished or is experiencing drought reduces its ability to sustenance life, which has a variety of effects, including agricultural failure, migration, and conflict. In order to safeguard a more sheltered, equitable, and sustainable future for all people, the United Nations Convention to Prevent Desertification (UNCCD) was developed.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1. What is wind erosion?

Ans. It is a natural procedure for the wind to carry soil from one place to another. It may seriously harm the economy and ecology. Wind erosion can be brought on by a light breeze that carries soil particles across the surface to a strong wind that lifts a lot of material into the air and causes dust storms.

Q2. What is the bone challenge?

Ans. The Bonn Challenge is an international initiative that aims to restore 150 million hectares of damaged and deforested landscapes by 2020 and 350 million hectares by 2030. The Challenge, which was established in 2011 by the German government and the IUCN, received pledges totaling 150 million hectares in 2017.

Q3. What is vegetation Degradation?

Ans. The main element of terrestrial ecosystems is vegetation. Degradation of the vegetation is defined as a drop in biomass or a modification in the composition of the vegetation community. Climate change and human actions, such as global warming, altered precipitation patterns, and overgrazing, can both lead to vegetation deterioration.

Updated on: 07-Apr-2023


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