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This feature article from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's Earth Observatory discusses the use of satellite imagery to evaluate desertification which is occurring in the Sahel, a region of central African savannah that forms the boundary between the Sahara Desert to the north and the wetter, more fertile regions to the south. Topics include the use of Very High Resolution Radiometer (VHRR) data, obtained from National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) meteorological satellites, to develop a vegetation index, and exactly how the term 'desertification' should be defined in order to distinguish temporarily degraded land from that which has permanently lost productivity.
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