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Rural societies in the face of climatic and environmental changes in West Africa

Benjamin Sultan
Richard Lalou
Mouftaou Amadou Sanni
et al.


Benjamin Sultan, Richard Lalou, Mouftaou Amadou Sanni, Amadou Oumarou et Mame Arame Soumaré

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New environmental opportunities

After 30 years of drought in the whole of the Sahel, rains returned in the first decade of the 21st century. This is a particularly strong trend in the central part of the Sahel, although the humid conditions of 1950-1969 have not been reached, and less marked in the western Sahel where drought lasted longer until the end of the 2000s.

In response to this return of rainfall, a regreening trend was observed in practically the whole of the Sahelian strip during the period 1981-2011. The resilience of vegetation concerns the herbaceous stratum in particular; this seems to have considerable recovery capacity, even after the droughts in the 1970s and 1980s. These field observations were made in particular in the agropastoral systems in the Gourma in Mali. Although their reappearance is less spectacular, the population of ligneous plants also seems to be in the process of regeneration after the recent increase in precipitation and the recharging of groundwate...


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