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A wake-up call

The World Environment Day's theme this year, 'Deserts and Desertification', is a problem which the global community recognized when it adopted in 1994 the Convention to Combat Desertification.

World Environment Day is observed worldwide to focus attention on a set of global problems that human society cannot ignore much longer. The UN generally assigns a specific theme for this day each year, and the focus for 2006 is 'Deserts and Desertification', a problem which the global community recognized when it adopted in 1994 the Convention to Combat Desertification. However, action at the international level to combat desertification in reality has been weak and unfocussed. The issue of desertification is often is perceived in the West as a natural problem of advancing desert is in far away developing countries. In actual fact desertification is essentially a problem of land degradation and loss of biological productivity of land caused by human induced factors and climate change, covering 1/3rd of the earth's surface area and over a billion people.

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