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Combat desertification and soil degradation in arid and humid environments and assess impacts on ecosystem services – approaches and solutions.
Convener: E. van den Elsen  | Co-Conveners: J. de Vente , A. Ferreira , R. Hessel 
Oral Programme
 / Thu, 26 Apr, 08:30–12:00  / 13:30–15:00  / Room 6
Poster Programme
 / Attendance Thu, 26 Apr, 17:30–19:00  / Hall Z

This session is a combination of former sessions SSS6.10, SSS6.3 and SSS6.8

Fragile arid and semi-arid ecosystems are in urgent need of conservation approaches that can prevent and reduce the widespread on-going land degradation and desertification processes, such as erosion, flooding, overgrazing, drought, salinization and forest fires. Not only arid systems are under threat, but also soil degradation and its implications to the livelihoods of local populations is a major concern in humid environments, from the equatorial forests such as the Amazon, to temperate climates such as the sub-humid Mediterranean climates, where forest fires play a key role in ecosystem degradation, to colder climates where climate change alters soil equilibrium and may induce degradation processes.

The recently finished DESIRE project identifies promising alternative Sustainable Land Management (SLM) strategies based on a close collaboration of scientists with stakeholder groups in dryland areas around the world. This integrative participatory approach ensures both the acceptability and feasibility of conservation techniques, and provides a sound scientific basis for the effectiveness at various scales.

Adaptation to climate change requires the design of effective and sustainable land management (SLM) strategies to reduce the negative effects of soil erosion and sediment delivery to rivers, and to mitigate climate change itself through increased sequestration of carbon in the soil and vegetation.

This session will
a) Demonstrate case study results from a number of important steps within the DESIRE project; - Integration of scientific research, stakeholder involvement and policy, - Use of a desertification risk indicator system, - ranking, selection and implementation of SLM strategies together with previously identified stakeholder communities,
- monitoring and modeling the selected SLM strategies in order to quantify their effectiveness at various scales, - extrapolation of results using indicator sets, geo-information data, and integrated modeling systems combining socio-economic and environmental aspects, - development of practical guidelines for good agricultural practices and SLM, - feedback of results to the stakeholder communities and the policy forming community. [SSS6.10]
b) Introduce field or model based studies that assess the (multiple) impacts of Sustainable Land Management measures on soil and water resources and related ecosystem services (e.g. erosion control, water regulation, carbon sequestration…) from plots to regional scales [SSS6.3]
c) Show examples from soil degradation processes in humid regions with particular interest on the developing countries where the social and economic impacts are more relevant. We aim to bring together people working on processes, thresholds and on mitigation measures. [SSS6.8]

A session flyer can be downloaded at:\EGU2012\EGU2012_flyer.pdf