In 1994, the United Nations General Assembly declared June 17 the World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought and the implementation of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) in those countries experiencing serious drought and/or desertification. The theme was chosen to increase awareness about the potential of ecosystem-based adaptation as a strategy for coping with the impacts of climate change, especially in the drylands. Ecosystem-based adaptation means the strengthening of natural systems to cushion the worst impacts of climate change. When ecosystems are healthy, they are less vulnerable to the impacts and hazards of climate change.
“Land degradation, caused or exacerbated by climate change, is not only a danger to livelihoods, but also a threat to peace and stability.” – UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon