de·​sert·​i·​fi·​ca·​tion | \ di-ˌzər-tə-fə-ˈkā-shən How to pronounce desertification (audio) \

Definition of desertification

: the process of becoming desert (as from land mismanagement or climate change)

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Other Words from desertification

desertify \ di-​ˈzər-​tə-​ˌfī How to pronounce desertification (audio) \ transitive verb

Examples of desertification in a Sentence

The organization was awarded for its efforts to prevent further desertification in Africa.
Recent Examples on the Web Around the world, climate change is becoming an epochal crisis, a nightmare of drought, desertification, flooding and unbearable heat, threatening to make vast regions less habitable and drive the greatest migration of refugees in history. New York Times, "How Russia Wins the Climate Crisis," 16 Dec. 2020 Billionaires and pension funds were never going to save us from the news desertification of the U.S. Rachel M. Cohen, The New Republic, "The Desperate Last Days of Local News," 14 Dec. 2020 Roberto Atencio, an agronomist from the University of Córdoba, said that if too much salty water is spread over cultivated land, the salt left behind after evaporation can kill the plants and accelerate the irreversible process of desertification. Agostino Petroni, Environment, "This sacred bean saved an indigenous clan from climate calamity," 25 Nov. 2020 Drought, desertification, colonialism, coups, corruption, poverty and ethnic strife have all taken their toll. Nick Turse, New York Times, "How One of the Most Stable Nations in West Africa Descended Into Mayhem," 15 Oct. 2020 To determine whether African desertification could be linked to the Southeast Asian megadrought, the researchers simulated the ancient climate, incorporating interactions among the oceans, the atmosphere, dust, and vegetation. Charles Choi, Science | AAAS, "Ancient megadrought may explain civilization’s ‘missing millennia’ in Southeast Asia," 24 Aug. 2020 Mali is a poor place, struggling under postcolonial burdens, landlocked between seven neighboring countries, at risk of desertification, and fighting an insurgency. Teju Cole, Condé Nast Traveler, "In Mali, Music Is a Family Legacy," 21 Aug. 2020 With desertification on the rise globally, innovations that allow crops to flourish in arid areas could help shore up the food supply in many countries. Stephanie Bailey, CNN, "This startup wants to turn Dubai's desert into farmland," 13 Aug. 2020 In fact, 74 US mainland military installations are threatened by sea level rise, drought, desertification, wildfires and thawing permafrost over the next 20 years. al, "Climate change and COVID-19 -- a promising contrast," 18 May 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'desertification.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of desertification

1972, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for desertification

Time Traveler

The first known use of desertification was in 1972

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Statistics for desertification

Last Updated

22 Dec 2020

Cite this Entry

“Desertification.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for desertification


How to pronounce desertification (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of desertification

technical : the process by which an area becomes a desert

More from Merriam-Webster on desertification

Nglish: Translation of desertification for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about desertification

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