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Climate-Vegetation trends (areas of concern)

Changes in vegetation biomass are critical in assessing land degradation. Climate variations, alone or in combination with human-induced land use and land change, can affect biomass productivity and may trigger changes in vegetation type and structure. Depending on their severity and duration, precipitation anomalies can trigger or aggravate existing land pressures. This layer displays the areas of concern for climate-vegetation trends derived from the convergence of global evidence of human-environment interactions that can have consequences on land degradation. It highlights areas with declining plant productivity in response to climate fluctuations (drought conditions in particular).

Cherlet, M., Hutchinson, C., Reynolds, J., Hill, J., Sommer, S., von Maltitz, G. (Eds.), World Atlas of Desertification, Publication Office of the European Union, Luxembourg, 2018.


Concerns can be validated or dismissed only by evaluating them within their local biophysical, social, economic and political contexts. Local context provides an understanding of causes and consequences of degradation, but also offers guidance for efforts to control or reverse it.

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