13.12.2016

Land use types and their challenges

Global Bilgiler  /  at  00:50  /  No comments

Global Bilgiler
The main agricultural land use types in dryland areas are cropland, irrigated land, and rangeland. Different land degradation problems occur depending on the type of land use.
 Cropland
Total cropland worldwide: 1.5 billion ha Cropland affected by soil degradation: 38% 55% of the gross value of food is produced under rainfed agriculture.
Cropland in dry rainfed areas is used primarily by smallholder farmers to cultivate field and cash crops.
Challenges

  • Expansion of cultivated fields and diminishing of natural vegetation cover
  • Insufficient amounts of organic material and nutrients
  • Burning of organic material (harvest residue, brush fires)
  • Soil erosion (wind and water)
 Irrigated land

  • Total irrigated cropland worldwide: 252 m ha Irrigated cropland as percentage of total cropland: 17%
  • Irrigated land affected by salinisation: 20%
  • Water demand for agricultural production: cereals 1000-1500 l/kg, meat 15,000 l/kg
  • Irrigation often causes depletion and contamination of surface and groundwater, leading to water conflicts. Irrigated land is often severely affected by salinisation and waterlogging.
  • The main causes of salinisation are inadequate drainage and excessive water application. It is estimated that salinisation costs farmers US$11 billion annually in lost income.
Challenges

  • Overuse of water resources
  • Inefficient use of water
  • Soil erosion and salinisation
 Rangeland
Total rangeland surface worldwide: 3.4 billion ha Rangeland affected by soil degradation: 73% The livestock population has increased dramatically in rangeland areas in recent years. Rangeland in arid areas includes tree, bush and grass savannah, steppes in temperate zones, and high pastures in arid areas. Nomadic pastoralists graze pastures extensively over large areas, whereas sedentary smallholder farmers use pastureland intensively over smaller areas.
Challenges

  • Overgrazing, burning and increase in undesirable plants
  • Insufficient soil organic carbon
  • Soil degradation: erosion, compaction, crusting
  • Free grazing, no clear land use rights
Source:UNCCD

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