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 desertify (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

Roughly three-quarters of Mongolia’s land is degraded or suffering desertification, with about a quarter seriously affected, said Damdin Dagvadorj, managing director of the Climate Change and Development Academy. Simon Denyer, Washington Post, "Mongolia’s nomadic way of life threatened by climate change, neglect, modernity," 8 July 2018 The congressional mandate requires the Defense Department to examine each threatened military installation for the effects of rising sea tides, increased flooding, drought, desertification, wildfires and thawing permafrost over the coming 20 years. Gerald Harris, USA TODAY, "Trump’s skepticism aside, the Navy is taking climate change seriously," 28 June 2018 But the dramatic increase in the herd has brought problems of over-grazing exacerbated by desertification, as witnessed by Samdan's daughter Altantsetseg Jugdur. Max Baring, The Christian Science Monitor, "Mongolian herders leave nomadic lifestyle for the city," 3 May 2018 And then since one of the issues has to do with migration these days, a lot of the people who are coming out of Africa are coming out because of climate change and desertification. Lily Rothman, Time, "'You Have to Stand Up to Evil': Madeleine Albright on Facing Fascism and What She Worries About Most Right Now," 11 Apr. 2018 Trump signed into law last month a surprisingly strong allocation of $139.5 million for the Global Environment Facility, which supports programs to alleviate a host of environmental ills, including climate change, biodiversity and desertification. Jean Chemnick, Scientific American, "2018 Budget A Mixed Bag for International Environmental Funding," 9 Apr. 2018 The logging also adds to desertification, which, in turn, causes conflict across the Sahel, an arid belt below the Sahara. The Economist, "How illegal charcoal fuels war and harms the environment," 28 Mar. 2018 And this does not even touch on the secondary effects: desertification, habitat loss and extinctions, resource depletion, pollution, population migrations, and political fallout such as wars and anarchy. Smithsonian, "Discussion of our January/February Issue," 24 Feb. 2018 The difference, Thomas says, is that unlike a hoarder’s pile, ecosystems perform vital planetary functions, like keeping soil fertile, preventing desertification and absorbing carbon dioxide. Jennifer Kahn, New York Times, "Should Some Species Be Allowed to Die Out?," 13 Mar. 2018

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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Statistics for desertification

Last Updated

23 Apr 2019

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Time Traveler for desertification

The first known use of desertification was in 1972

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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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