TAG: Land degradation

Halting The Sands

Desertification, Africa

If you were to visit rural southern Africa you would likely experience the beauty of a primordial country life. The cows would be grazing, farmers would be in the fields, their irrigation sprinklers would be at work, and maidens would be collecting firewood from the nearby forest. At face value there is nothing wrong with the picture, however if you would multiply the activity described, and look forward by 10 years or so, the picture would change to a cover on a document entitled “The Leading Cause of Desertification”. The United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification focuses particularly on those African countries… read more

The Aftermath Of Mining

Sasar Baia Mare Gold Mine Disaster

In 2000, a gold mine tailings dam in Baia Mare, Romania was breached. Soon thereafter, all the cyanide-rich waste it contained – some 100,000 cubic meters of it – flooded into the surrounding watershed. Aside from cutting off the water supply of 2.5 million people, it killed nearly all the aquatic life residing in the nearby water. This event is not unique as we continue destructive practices all over the world, meaning many mountains of once imposing grandeur have had their surroundings reduced to rubble, and their contents exploited. After grounds have been blasted and their contents extracted, mines tailings… read more

Who Should We Blame?

Illegal Mining

Natural minerals can be of great benefit to a country if extracted responsibly. It is unfortunate that in the developing world, more especially the African region, precious metals have been the source of grave ruin in the form of warfare and injustice. Natural resources are also increasingly causing environmental concerns in unregulated or under monitored territories, where illegal mining has become the order of the day. Illegal mining generally involves the extraction of natural minerals without a valid permit to do so, or contravening conditions set forth in a valid permit. The scourge of illegal mining will usually occur where… read more

The March Of The Desert

Image of desertification

Desertification is the process in which fertile land slowly turns into sand-filled deserts. It’s happening all around the world, and increasingly so in the United States. It’s a direct result of poor environmental decisions, livestock grazing, and landowner neglect. The good news is that it’s also reversible and preventable. Allan Savory, a research biologist and President/Co-Founder of the Savory Institute, recently gave an inspirational TED talk about healing our land. His background on the subject is impressive, and should give us pause to heed his words. In the 1960’s while working in Southern Rhodesia (Zimbabwe), he came to understand what… read more