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Volume 5 Issue 1, January 2022

Costs and benefits of the Great Green Wall

The Great Green Wall programme aims to restore 100 million hectares of degraded ecosystems across various countries in the Sahel region (pictured). Mirzabaev and colleagues evaluated the economic costs and benefits of future land restoration projects under this programme.

See Mirzabaev et al.

Image: Moctar Sacande, United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). Cover Design: Thomas Phillips.

Comment & Opinion

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News & Views

  • Degraded land is being restored along an 8,000 km stretch across Sahelian countries. A new analysis reveals promising economic returns from recent projects and informs the targeting of strategies for newly pledged funds.

    • Jacob Hochard
    News & Views
  • Historical and future trends in sustainability performance show that the world’s countries have substantially overshot their fair share of most planetary boundaries, without proportional social achievements.

    • Kai Fang
    News & Views
  • With rising fossil fuel consumption and ongoing land cover change, humanity is burning through its remaining carbon budget. Recent work puts a ‘Do not disturb’ sign on biospheric carbon we can’t afford to lose.

    • Peter Thornton
    News & Views
  • Sustainable farming of fish requires their feed to be responsibly sourced. New research illustrates how we could convert industrial carbon emissions into a valuable feed resource.

    • Richard S. Cottrell
    News & Views
  • Doubling food productivity in smallholder farms — a major goal to achieve global food security, according to the United Nations — may come with additional nutrient needs. A new study reports that some regions will require almost 40% more phosphorus between 2015 and 2030 to meet this objective.

    • Thomas Nesme
    News & Views
  • Oceanic uranium represents a vast fuel resource that could ensure the long-term sustainability of nuclear power. A new study seeks to harness that potential by developing a bioinspired adsorbent membrane capable of capturing uranium from seawater.

    • Alexander I. Wiechert
    • Sotira Yiacoumi
    • Costas Tsouris
    News & Views
  • Whether payments for ecosystem services (PES) are effective and how they change the motivations of land and resource users in the long-term is still controversial. A study of a program in Ecuador provides encouraging results regarding what happens if payments stop.

    • Julian Rode
    News & Views
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