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Decreasing land productivity (areas of concern)

Humans need increasingly more biomass for food, fodder, fibre and energy. Meeting these demands changes global ecosystems. Tracking changes in total biomass production or land productivity is an essential part of monitoring land transformations that are typically associated with land degradation. Land productivity dynamics (LPD) are used as an indicator of change or stability of the land’s capacity to sustain primary production. This layer displays the areas of concern for land productivity related issues, derived from the convergence of global evidence of human-environment interactions that can have consequences on land degradation.

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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