More than two billion people depend on the world’s arid and semi-arid lands. Preventing land degradation and supporting sustainable development in drylands has major implications for food security, climate change and human settlement.

In the context of the United Nations Decade for Deserts and the Fight against Desertification, the UN system is engaged through a shared strategy to rise to the challenge of addressing the special needs of these vital zones.

The Report: Global Drylands, a UN System wide Response prepared by 18 UN agencies provides a UN system wide approach in supporting the Drylands agenda. The report looks into the drylands issues in the context of human well-being and provides a positive investment approach in addressing the dylands challenges. It illustrates the many ways in which the UN system is identifying opportunities to mainstream the drylands agenda into the policy-making process.

The 10th Conference of the Parties of the Convention to Combat Desertifciation and Droughts (UNCCD) has invited the Environment Management Group to prepare an Action Plan to implement the findings of the Global Drylands Report though an Inter-agency Issue Management Group on land. The work of the Group is inspired by the outcome document of  the Rio+20 and aims to contribute to the post 2015 development agenda including the Sustainable Development Goals.