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New research has shown that deserts in Burkino Faso are shrinking, and that dunes are retreating right across the Sahel region on the southern edge of the Sahara desert.

The greening of the desert — which scientists say has been happening largely unnoticed since the mid-1980s — contradicts the commonly held idea that desertification is an irreversible process.

But there is still confusion over exactly why the desert is retreating. Some believe the main reason is increased rainfall, while others cite improved farming techniques.

Link to New Scientist news story

Source: NewScientist.Com

Photo credit: F. Botts/FAO