On Tuesday, 20 September 2011, member states participated at the United Nations General Assembly high-level meeting on the theme, “Addressing desertification, land degradation and drought in the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication.” Click here for full reports from the event.

In 1992, desertification, along with climate change and the loss of biodiversity, were identified as the greatest challenges to the sustainable development during the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (also known as the ’92 Rio Earth Summit). These three challenges are linked and remain the global environmental problems of our time, threatening the overall stability and the welfare of the future generations. Most importantly, their negative impacts on aspects such as global food security, poverty eradication and forced migration are growing. Decisive action is required especially on the long-term productivity of the land in light of the increased spread, frequency, intensity and length of the most recent droughts and floods.

Since 1996, the international community has sought to combat desertification, land degradation and drought through the implementation of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification). At the turn of the Century in the year 2000, the international community launched an aggressive campaign to combat poverty through it global campaign on the Millennium Development Goals to eradicate poverty by 2015.

On behalf of WEDO, Board Member- Marcela Tovar, attended this important meeting to highlight the role that women have played in combating desertification and land degradation and mitigating drought impacts within the larger contexts of sustainable development and poverty eradication. Attached, pleased find her joint statement with CARI (represented by Patrice Burger).

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