UN Drylands ambassador calls for greater focus on restoration of tropical drylands

Dennis Garrity, United Nations Drylands Ambassador, called for increased attention on restoring tropical drylands during a visit to the island of Sumba in eastern Indonesia.

‘Sumba is an extreme case with many challenges,’ said Garrity, speaking in the field on the island, 8 May 2019, ‘but I have seen achievements here that demonstrate that restoration can be done, for the benefit of the farmers and the environment.’

Drylands cover an estimated 40% of the Earth’s land area. Of that, perhaps up to 60% are in the tropics. In the race to restore degraded tropical landscapes to counter global warming and improve the livelihoods of the inhabitants, it has usually been the humid tropics that receive the most attention.