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Land degradation, climate change and migration. Challenges for the EU and Africa

Land as a resource. European Commission. Land is a finite resource. It is subject to competing pressures from urbanisation, infrastructure, increased food, feed, fibre and fuel production and the provision of key ecosystem services. But it's also a shrinking resource. Almost 1000 km2 of agriculture or natural land disappears every year in the EU, as it is converted into artificial areas. More EU land is affected by degradation all the time, and ecosystem services are lost as a result. This is a global problem.

The EU contributes to land degradation in third countries, as we are a net "importer" of land embedded into imported products. Demand for areas to settle, grow food and biomass is rising around the world, and climate change is likely to impact on land demand, availability and degradation. A conference on "Land as a resource" took place on 19 June 2014 in Brussels. The outcome provided useful insight in view of the development of action at EU level on "Land as a resource".