17 June 2008: On the occasion of 2008 World Day to Combat
Desertification and Drought, celebrated on 17 June, the Global Mechanism (GM)
of the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) emphasized that “the
current strategy and policy debates around climate resilience, sustainable
agriculture and food security point to the conclusion that none of these global
challenges and threats to human well-being should be tackled in isolation, but
as part and
parcel of development programming at country level, supported
international policy making processes.”
June 2008: In a message on the occasion of UN World Day to Combat
Desertification, the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD)
highlighted the role of poor farmers and herders in stopping or reversing land
degradation in areas affected by desertification.
17 June 2008: The UN
Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) selected “Combating land
degradation for sustainable agriculture” as the theme for 2008 World Day to
Combat Desertification and Drought, celebrated on 17 June. On the occasion,
UNCCD Executive Secretary Luc Gnacadja highlighted that the conversion of land
to “unsustainable uses can exacerbate the vicious circle of land degradation,
loss of biodiversity and climate change.”
5 June 2008: Deputy Executive Secretary Grégoire de Kalbermatten
addressed the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) High-Level Conference on
Food Security on 5 June 2008, and emphasized actions to enhance carbon
sequestration in soil. He suggested that the climate change negotiations should
give increased attention to land and soil, including by expanding the Clean
Development Mechanism's (CDM) coverage of agricultural land use, particularly
projects focusing on carbon sequestration in soil.
May 2008: The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the Global Mechanism of the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) have jointly commissioned a report entitled “Mitigating the Impact of Climate Change and Land Degradation through IFAD's Country Strategic Opportunities Paper (COSOP) in Viet Nam.” The report examines the impact of climate change and land degradation on Viet Nam's agricultural and related sectors, to guide project design of COSOP priorities and to identify supplementary financing for IFAD projects from the UNFCCC and other carbon-related financing mechanisms.
13 May 2008: UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) Executive Secretary Luc Gnacadja met with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on the sidelines of the sixteenth session of the UN Commission on Sustainable Development.
16 May 2008: The sixteenth session of the UN Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD), which met from 5-16 May 2008, in New York, US, has reviewed the thematic cluster of agriculture, rural development, drought, desertification, land and Africa. Many delegations and speakers tied these agenda items to the current global food crisis and climate change, and highlighted in particular land degradation, high energy costs, climate change, poor harvests, speculation in agricultural commodities, inequitable terms of trade, decline of investments in rural and agricultural development, and increased production of biofuels from food crops as drivers of high food prices.
In his statement to mark 2008 World Meteorological Day, UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) Executive Secretary Luc Gnacadja emphasized the increasing frequency of extreme weather and climate events, including droughts and water scarcity, and highlighted that “Desertification, land degradation and drought are strongly linked to climate change, soil degradation and biodiversity.”
In a message to the Beijing International Conference on Combating Desertification, held Beijing, China, from 22-24 January, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said the “impact of desertification is intensifying due to climate change, which is reducing the availability of freshwater, fertile soil, and forest and vegetation.”
The Secretary-General said the Conference offers a timely opportunity for combating climate change and achieving sustainable development in areas affected by land degradation.
The Joint Liaison Group of the three Rio Conventions (the Convention on Biological Diversity, Convention on Climate Change, and Convention to Combat Desertification) has issued an information brochure on the important contribution of forests to the achievement of their respective goals and objectives.