Drought kills agricultural profit
Land degradation and desertification are causing huge reductions in agricultural profits in the world’s poorest nations, according to a report presented at the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD). The first assessment of its kind in more than 20 years calculates that Guatemala, for example, lost 24% of its agricultural gross domestic product to environmental degradation. The findings were presented at the UNCCD’s second scientific conference, on 9 April in Bonn, Germany. Nearly 3.7 million people in East Africa still require food assistance after droughts in Kenya (pictured) and other nations wiped out crops in 2011, the UNCCD says. “Desertification, land degradation and drought are key constraints to building social and environmental resilience, achieving global food security and delivering meaningful poverty reduction,” said UNCCD executive secretary Luc Gnacadja at the meeting.