Desert and fertile land-Two increasingly related concepts

Sand has a low water retention capacity, so claiming that a desert can become fertile while being profitable and practical is very difficult, but everything can change.

Desert and fertile land

It has always been considered that the desert is not fertile, in addition each year 12 million hectares cease to be fertile due to:

  • Desertification caused by drought..
  • Deforestation.

Can it therefore be said that a desert cannot become fertile?.

Thanks to Kristian Morten Olesen , Norwegian scientist, we can say the opposite, since he has designed a process with the following characteristics:

  • The sand particles are covered by a layer of clay that causes their physical properties to change completely.
  • That they have greater facility of union with the water increasing their capacity of retention.

This product called Liquid Nanoclay (LNC) is introduced into the sand and creates a fertile layer approximately half a meter deep.

In the oasis of Al Ain (United Arab Emirates), and under highly extreme conditions with temperatures of up to 50 ͦC, Faisal Mohammed Al Shimmari has managed to cultivate reducing more than 50% the cost of water with this new technique .


Although the progress and results have been surprising, the cost to carry it out is high , since this practice costs approximately between $ 2,000 and $ 9,000 per hectare depending on the size of the project to be carried out.

This advance, which may represent a major turnaround in the reconversion of soils for certain agricultural and cultivation areas, will initially be implemented by municipal governments and local producers, but over time all farmers will surely adapt.

Thanks to Olesen we can say that the relationship between desert and fertile land is increasing, and with it the recovery of land.

Article source: BBC and El Mundo

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