Test of Endurance: Addressing migration and security risks by means of landscape restoration in Africa | Land Portal

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Date of publication: 
December 2018
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For the African continent, the ability to manage trade-offs at a landscape scale has huge potential to influence the future of migration and conflict, as well as the future of land resources, food security and biodiversity. Integrated land management can act as an accelerator for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and can be considered an essential element of a sustainable strategy to address the root causes of irregular migration. A Marshall Plan for sub-Saharan Africa and the Sahel should therefore include the potential of landscape restoration approaches to achieve multiple wins, while taking into account its long-term effects and short- and medium-term risks. This report aims to assess, by setting out a stakeholder mapping, to what extent landscape restoration initiatives (potentially) address migration and security objectives in Africa. The issue of land degradation and restoration is receiving increasing attention from policy makers with regard to addressing the root causes of migration. Landscape restoration initiatives in Africa have political momentum, with African political leaders endorsing restoration initiatives such as the African Forest Landscape Restoration Initiative (AFR100) and the Great Green Wall Initiative. Africa is particularly vulnerable to land degradation, with desertification affecting around 45 percent of Africa’s land area. A large proportion of Africa’s land cover is composed of varying types of drylands. The issue of land degradation is even more pressing considering the expected doubling of the population in Africa between 2018 and 2050, rapid urbanisation, and the high dependency of over 80 percent of the population on local land for livelihoods (in sub-Saharan Africa). This, in turn, is likely to have an impact on involuntary migration, conflict, food insecurity and poverty. Even though the statistical and causal relationships between these problems are still the subject of academic debate, evidence is mounting that the relationships do exist.

Authors and Publishers

Author(s), editor(s), contributor(s): 

van Schaik, Louise
Kamphof, Ries
Sarris, Stefano

Data provider

The United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification in Those Countries Experiencing Serious Drought and/or Desertification, Particularly in Africa (UNCCD) is a Convention to combat desertification and mitigate the effects of drought through national action programs that incorporate long-term strategies supported by international cooperation and partnership arrangements.


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