Innovation That Matters

FSG turns desert into farmland | Photo source Sergey Pesterev on Unsplash

Cultivating desert land for agriculture

Agriculture & Energy

A startup is regenerating desert lands with a unique approach

Spotted: The world loses almost six million hectares of forest each year to deforestation. That’s like losing an area the size of Portugal every two years. And around three-quarters of this deforestation is directly attributable to agriculture. To respond to this problem, From Sand to Green (FSG) has developed a nature-based solution for transforming desert agriculture.

FSG has developed a three-pronged approach to deforestation. This includes developing customised desalination modules that run on solar energy, creating adapted tree plantations and crops that refertilise the soil and produce food, and building agroforestry software to effectively create and manage plantations in arid environments.

One of FSG’s first projects is the Domaine de Nzaha, a 20-hectare agricultural farm in Morocco that uses permaculture and agroforestry techniques to produce organic vegetables and fruits. The organisation’s projects involve using microalgae to recycle the salty wastewater produced during desalination, using drip irrigation and biochar to retain water and store carbon, and installing nurseries of native species.

In addition to revitalising soils and growing food, FSG’s methods create carbon sinks, preserve biodiversity, and help local communities.

Methods to reverse deforestation and desertification are seen by many as an important part of the fight against both global warming and food insecurity. This is why we are seeing a number of innovations in this area, including digital smart forest technology to improve forest management, AI-powered drones for replanting forests, and a cardboard planter that improves subsistence food production.

Written By: Lisa Magloff



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