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Oasis restoration

There are over 200 traditional oases in northern Nigeria distributed as follows: Yunusari, Yobe (60 oases), Yusufari Karasuwa, Yobe (61 oases), Sokoto/Kebbi (26 oases), Jigawa (60 oases). 51 Oases are the cradle of cultivars adapted to local conditions and constitute a natural heritage of plants for multiple uses including fodder, condiments, and medicinal and aromatic plants. Over-exploitation, climate change, and the absence of community-based water and land management systems have resulted in the rapid degradation of critical oases. This has had multiple adverse impacts, such as: (a) degradation of ecosystem services, including nutrient cycling, decomposition and soil respiration, water and soil conservation, together with the reduction of biomass for carbon sequestration and gas regulation; (b) loss of unique breeds (or varieties) and their associated diversity, particularly pollinators and soil organisms adapted to local conditions; (c) collapse of a resilient food production base for local and global communities; and (d) out-migration and the resulting conflicts between competing users of over-exploited natural resource bases. The ACReSAL project will focus resources on some of the most vulnerable oases.