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Great Green Wall brings life back to Niger desert (NOVEMBER 23, 2021)

Titre : Great Green Wall brings life back to Niger desert

Once a desolate landscape, the Simiri plateau in Niger is now a small paradise for fauna and flora. (NOVEMBER 23, 2021)

Goats crunch acacia seeds, squirrel and partridge prints dot the ground, praying mantises hang from trees and swarms of grasshoppers devour the verdant foliage.

"A small forest has miraculously been reborn," marvelled Simiri mayor Moussa Adamou.

The transformation is part of the African Union’s Great Green Wall project, which aims to restore 100 million hectares of dry land by 2030 along an 8,000-kilometre (5,000-mile) strip stretching from Senegal in the west to Djibouti in the east. Arable land is prized in landlocked Niger, where desert covers three-quarters of the territory and 80 percent of the population lives on subsistence farming.

The World Bank predicts its population will rise from 23 million in 2019 to 30 million in 2030 and 70 million in 2050, underlining the vital importance of the Green Wall’s success. Niger’s contribution is mainly made up of white gum and Bauhinia rufescens trees, two drought-resistant species that can grow 12 metres (40 feet) tall. Armed with pickaxes and spades, villagers built earthen embankments that hold rainwater around the saplings longer to ensure they grow even during droughts.

Source  : Boureima Hama

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Page publiée le 15 janvier 2023