The economics of land degradation in Africa: benefits of action outweigh the costs

A report co-published by the Economics of Land Degradation (ELD) Initiative and the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), titled 'The Economics of Land Degradation in Africa: Benefits of Action Outweigh the Costs,' examines the impact of erosion-induced soil nutrient depletion in 42 African countries, an area representing almost half of the total arable land used for cereal production. In order to achieve many of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the region, the report calls for increased integration of actions against land degradation with poverty reduction measures “aimed at harnessing the benefits of sustainable natural resource management towards increased national income, reduced food insecurity and poverty eradication.” The report concludes that investments in sustainable land management (SLM) interventions could prevent the loss of about 280 million tons of cereal crops and generate about US$71.8 billion each year.