How Important are Trees? Visit the Sahel for a Closer Look will not be surprising.

“One in six trees in the Sahel has died since the 1950s as temperatures rise, threatening livelihoods.”

Patrick Gonzalez published his first study in 2001: Desertification and a Shift of Forest Species in the West African Sahel. Details from a revised study appears in this Guardian article:

Climate Change Killing Trees Across the Sahel

Many countries use trees to increase canopy cover in metropolitan areas. In the Sahel and other developing regions of the world under assault from changing climate and increasing populations, trees have a different level of significance.

“[A] shift in the vegetation zones could have a severe impact on the lives of the Sahel’s population. People in the Sahel depend on trees for maintaining soil fertility and for firewood, hut poles, food and other essentials of life … so the loss of trees directly harms people’s livelihoods.”


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