Celebrating 30 Years of International Day against Desertification, and Drought

A special issue of Land (ISSN 2073-445X). This special issue belongs to the section "Soil-Sediment-Water Systems".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 September 2024 | Viewed by 1105

Special Issue Editors

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Guest Editor
Department of Geography and Environment, Bar-Ilan University, Ramat Gan 5290002, Israel
Interests: surface runoff; soil erosion; land use; climate change
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Guest Editor
Department of Agriculture, Hellenic Mediterranean University, 71410 Heraklion, Greece
Interests: sustainable management of waste and natural resources
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

June 17th of each year since 1994 World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought, has been celebrated to raise awareness about the global efforts to combat desertification and encourage the desire to mobilize global efforts to maintain and restore land and soil productivity and mitigate the impact of drought on drylands.

The purpose of this Special Issue is to celebrate 30 years of "International Day Against Desertification and Drought".

Papers (original research articles and review papers) are encouraged that provide research results on desertification and drought and overviews of global land restoration and drought resilience.

Topics of interest for this Special Issue include the following: UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD); sustainable land management; resilience and adaptation of soil and vegetation to climate change; land and soil restoration; soil-water-vegetation-erosion relations under environmental change; desertification indicators; models of desertification; modelling climate change mitigation and adaptation; socioeconomic approaches to desertification; food & water security; poverty reduction.

Prof. Dr. Hanoch Lavee
Dr. Ioannis N. Daliakopoulos
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Land is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • climate change
  • sustainable land management
  • soil erosion
  • desertification indicators
  • desertification models
  • desertification processes
  • drought
  • food & water security

Published Papers (1 paper)

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14 pages, 9594 KiB  
Aeolian Sand Sorting and Soil Moisture in Arid Namibian Fairy Circles
by Hezi Yizhaq, Constantin Rein, Lior Saban, Noa Cohen, Klaus Kroy and Itzhak Katra
Land 2024, 13(2), 197; https://doi.org/10.3390/land13020197 - 6 Feb 2024
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 729
We studied fairy circles 20 km west of Sesriem at one of the driest locations of fairy circles in Namibia, at the foot of the popular Sossusvlei dunes. These fairy circles lack the typical hexagonal order of the Namibian fairy circles. After years [...] Read more.
We studied fairy circles 20 km west of Sesriem at one of the driest locations of fairy circles in Namibia, at the foot of the popular Sossusvlei dunes. These fairy circles lack the typical hexagonal order of the Namibian fairy circles. After years of drought, their pattern is more similar to that of vegetation rings, due to the sparse vegetation in the area between the circles. Cross-section measurements of the soil water content (SWC) show that the upper layer (12 cm) is very dry (~1%) and much below the wilting point of Stipagrostis ciliata grasses, whereas the deeper soil layer is wetter (4%). The grain size distribution of soil samples taken from inside and outside the fairy circles reveals considerable heterogeneity in the size fractions due to aeolian (wind-driven) sand sorting. The bare soil inside the fairy circles contains coarser grains, and the ground surface is covered by sand megaripples. There is a linear trend between the vertical soil moisture gradient and the median grain diameter. Fine particles trapped on the vegetated edges of the fairy circle result in small nebkhas that increase the soil water retention at the surface. The dry and loose coarser topsoil inside the fairy circles may prevent the recolonization of new seedlings with short root lengths inside the fairy circles. Our results highlight the role of aeolian sand transport and deposition in desert vegetation environments and seem to support the notion that fairy circle formation may be affected by the interplay between sand sorting and soil moisture gradients. Full article
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