The desertification can be defined as a process of degradation of the land that is mainly in the arid , semiarid and subhumid due to various factors, including climate variations and human activities . To put it another way, desertification results in the persistent degradation of drylands that occupy practically half of our planet’s land surface and ecosystems.that are more fragile due to man-made activities and different changes in the weather. Desertification is when the land that was originally from another type of biome becomes a desert biome due to the changes that have occurred in it over time. It is a great problem that is occurring every day more in different countries worldwide.

What is desertification?

Desertification is the process through which there is the constant degradation of ecosystems and dry land , which constitutes a large part of the earth’s crust through different climatic changes and by human activity.

  • What is desertification
  • Desertification process
  • Causes of desertification
  • Consequences
  • How to avoid desertification
  • Examples

What is desertification

Desertification is a process that occurs on practically all continents with the exception of Antarctica . It is a process that affects drylands worldwide, including those lands that have a shortage of water. It is a process of degradation of land mainly in dry regions through different processes climatic and activities of humans. It is a serious environmental problem that affects the socio- economic part of the peoples since it affects natural resources , water and vegetation, degrading the planet.

Desertification process

Desertification is a process of ecological degradation that occurs in soils. In this process, their fertility is lost and to a large extent, it occurs as a consequence of deforestation . The erosion , on irrigation and overexploitation of natural resources are the processes that initiate different changes when cause desertification as soils dry out and are completely unprotected . The climatic effects then intervene, causing the soils to become deserts., changing its physical and productivity characteristics. It then consists of converting the biomes that are originally fertile into biomes with desert characteristics .

Causes of desertification

The causes of desertification are varied and include the following:

  • Human causes : the misuse that is given to water and soil mainly for agriculture produces an alkalization of the soils causing the plants to die and not grow in the place, which causes the soils to dry out. The overgrazing causes the vegetation is removed, causing the soil to be exposed to the water and wind . The logging uncontrolled trees and mining opencast activities are performed without human control. The use of heavy machines causes the soil to become very compact, eliminating any possibility of thevegetation to develop, burning and felling are human causes as well.
  • Natural causes: natural causes are given merely by the biological and natural processes of nature. The erosion is one of the processes that occurs more frequently and produces wear and physical changes and chemical in nature and rocks. The droughts that occur in some parts of the planet cause plants to not grow, leaving the soil exposed to the wind. The torrential rains They wash the soils, mainly when it falls in areas that are already arid, causing the dragging of a large amount of sediment and removing practically all the vegetation cover that provides protection to the soils.


Desertification produces a decrease in soil fertility , which translates into a decrease in production, causing poverty and deterioration of the environment. This degradation of the soil affects mainly rural communities , which generates less food , health and a decrease in life expectancy . There is a great degradation of plant life and biodiversity is lostcausing the extinction of species. The erosion process is also accelerated by producing wind storms and eddies, the acceleration of water erosion produces large landslides of the soil and the degradation of the normal course of the waters . An increase in the salinization of the waters is created causing the death and mutations of different species of fish.

How to avoid desertification

To achieve prevent and avoid desertification require a series of measures and model of management , which should be implemented worldwide. Measures of governments to protect the soil are very important to prevent problems involved. Nowadays, technology even makes it possible to provoke rain in regions that are extremely dry by bombarding clouds with silver iodide . However, it must be taken into account that climatic , ecological and economic factors must be improved in order to eliminate the root problem.


In Mexico , desertification is a problem that affects most of the fields, generating poverty and lack of food, affecting agricultural production due to excessive overgrazing and deforestation . In Argentina , for example, there are a large number of arid and sub-humid areas that generate great desertification caused mainly by droughts , in this country laws have been established to protect the soils.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *