Scientists are still unsure if desertification is permanent or if it can be reversed. The USGS has suggested local remedies to ease the process of desertification, such as using sand fences or grass belts to protect land. Efficient use of existing water resources and control of salinization are also methods to improve arid lands.
There are a number of strategies that are believed to be able to aid in desertification, as well as anecdotal evidence, though there have been few, if any, large-scale successes. It is thought that land terracing, reintroduction of certain species, establishment of seed banks, and counter-erosion measures, along with many other efforts, could effectively reclaim land, but only with proper community involvement and careful planning. Other ideas involve more radical thinking, such as ‘biomimicry,’ as discussed by Michael Pawlyn in the second link below.
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