On World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought: CCC urges efficient land restoration and water management

June 17, 2024 Monday

MANILA, 17 June 2024 In observance of the World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought, the Climate Change Commission (CCC) called on Filipinos to engage in effective land restoration and water management to enhance resilience against these environmental challenges.

Desertification is the degradation of land resulting primarily from climatic variations and human activities. It reduces soil’s ability to support crops, which leads to lower yields and increased food scarcity. Drought, on the other hand, is a natural phenomenon characterized by a prolonged period of abnormally low rainfall that leads to a shortage of water. It affects drinking water supplies, agriculture, and industrial activities.

With climate change, desertification and droughts are expected to worsen and intensify. This loss affects ecosystems' ability to function and provide essential services. The degradation of land and water resources leads to malnutrition, poverty, and displacement, particularly in vulnerable communities in developing regions.

According to the United Nations, up to 40 percent of the world's land is already considered degraded. Degraded lands release stored carbon into the atmosphere, which contributes to climate change.

The CCC urged the public to take concerted action in land restoration and water management to reduce the impacts of these threats, and in effect, climate change.

“Addressing desertification and drought is crucial for our nation’s resilience and food security,” said Secretary Robert Borje, CCC Vice Chairperson and Executive Director. “We must act collectively to restore degraded lands and manage our water resources sustainably.”

Officially declared by the UN General Assembly in 1994 (A/RES/49/115), the World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought is observed every June 17th. It aims to promote public awareness of the issues linked to desertification, land degradation and drought and to showcase human-led solutions to prevent desertification and reverse intensifying droughts.

For more information on the CCC’s climate mainstreaming activities, visit www.climate.gov.ph and www.facebook.com/CCCPhl.