By Laide Akinboade
The United Nations Secretary-General, Mr. Ban Ki-moon has said it is imperative for all nations of the world to come together to fight desertification as continued land degradation in the world is a major threat to food security.

The UN Scribe said this much in a message he sent to mark the start of the decade 2010 to 2020 which the U.N. General Assembly declared as the Decade for Deserts and the Fight against Desertification.

The decade which was spearheaded by United Nations agencies, that included the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the International Fund for Agricultural Development,  Department of Public Information of the United Nations Secretariat.

The United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification is the focal point of this inter-agency task force.

According to Ban Ki-Moon, “Continued land degradation – whether from climate change, unsustainable agriculture or poor management of water resources, is a threat to food security, leading to starvation among the most acutely affected communities and robbing the world of productive land.

The global community must intensify efforts to nurture the land we need for achieving the Millennium Development Goals and guaranteeing human well-being.”

The Executive Secretary of the U.N. Convention to Combat Desertification,  (UNCCD), Mr. Luc Gnacadja, said it is imperative for Un to collaborate with Colorado State University (CSU), in area of research. “We have been working with CSU scientists for almost two years now.

The strength of the U.S. interdisciplinary approach is very important, and it is not universal. Evident in the universities is the linking of the biophysical systems through social sciences. And a real strength is in data systems.

Capacity building as part of research is useful, and extension services in the United States may be a model that could work elsewhere.

University communities are the nexus between research and policy.

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