Frequently Asked Questions
- What does the term “ecosystem restoration” mean?
Ecosystem restoration is a process of restoring green lands through planting and allowing native plant species to grow in the desert land. Ecosystem restoration is also possible through fencing and animal removal. In order to prevent farm animals from feeding in the endangered lands, they are often kept indoors during the period of the land recovery. Fencing the territory is also necessary in some cases, in order to keep the animals away and to allow native plant species to grow. In some cases, ecosystem restoration also requires the removal of any human exploitation of the land.
- What does the term “desertification” mean?
Desertification is the process of degradation of green ecosystems. When ecosystems are exploited for agriculture or feeding of farm animals, the plant life that grows on the soil becomes extinct. As a consequence of this, the soil is overly-exposed to sunlight, it loses its fertility and once fertile, green lands turn into deserts. This process lasts through many years and often isn’t even noticed in time. Desertification is, however, reversible. Areas that were devastated by the human and animal exploitation can be recovered, with planned and organize ecosystem restoration efforts.
- What are the results of ecosystem restoration?
Ecosystem restoration results in re-greening of the desert areas. Re-greening is possible with organized efforts to plant species that were previously extinct from the area. Re-greening further results in recovery of biodiversity of the area, with plant and animal species that are native to the area re-inhabiting the land. All this results in the recovery of the microclimate of the area. Most of the benefits from the ecosystem recovery come in the form of rehabilitation of the microclimate of the region. Since damage to the ecosystem of the one location affects ecosystems in neighboring locations, recovery of the ecosystem in one area has a beneficial influence to other areas as well.
- Does ecosystem restoration harm local human population?
No. In some cases, local people are required to keep their farm animals from feeding off the endangered lands, but this is done in a way that wouldn’t cause starvation to the local population. These people are usually compensated for the inability to feed their farm animals, with receiving funds that would support them during the process of the ecosystem recovery. The truth about human starvation is quite the opposite. The human starvation is actually caused by poorly managed agriculture and farming, which resulted in desertification of what once were fertile, green lands.
- What are the factors to influence destruction of natural vegetation?
A most significant factor to plant and animal degradation is human exploitation. Human exploitation of the land leads to desertification, and this happens mostly due to excessive use of the land for agriculture and feeding of farm animals. Climate change also affects ecosystems, in the form of extreme temperature rise or fall, as well as increase or decrease of rainfall that is characteristic to the particular ecosystem.