Green Wall of Africa

INFOCUS247

The Sahara is currently the second largest desert in size, only smaller than Antarctica. However, unlike its frozen relative, the Sahara is actually expanding. The United Nations estimates that, by 2025, two thirds of Africa’s arable land will be covered in Saharan sand, vastly expanding the current 9 million square kilometers. Even if these predictions prove aggressive, the effects of farmland destruction on a continent already hard-pressed for food would be devastating on any level.

With this peril in sight, the leaders of Senegal, Mauritania, Mali, Burkina Faso, Niger, Nigeria, Chad, Sudan, Eritrea, Ethiopia, and Djibouti have banded together on an unprecedented endeavor to stave off impending catastrophe. Once complete, Africa’s Green Wall will be a manmade forest of drought-resistant trees (principally acacia) stretching across the entire continent.

9 miles wide and 4,750 miles long, the vision for the project is as ambitious as it is necessary. Thus far, only…

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