Annex A - Group Research Proposal

Research Topic (Global Challenge): Desertification


Chosen Area of Focus: Growing desertification in the Middle East


Group Members’ Names:
a) Cornelius
b) Ryan
c) Phone Naing
d) Sid



  1. Statement of problem (framing our research topic):


Our problem is growing desertification in the Middle East and the parts of Asia around Mongolia. Desertification is a type of land degradation in which a relatively dry land region becomes increasingly arid, typically losing its bodies of water as well as vegetation and wildlife. It is caused by a variety of factors, such as climate change and human activities. Desertification is a significant global ecological and environmental problem. Desertification usually occurs when the trees and plant that covers the soil is removed. This happens when trees are cut down for fuel, timber or for cultivation. Grass cover is often lost when animals eat away grass and erode soil with their hooves. The soil which is not closely bound is then swept around by wind, eventually turning into sand. Wind and water speed up this process by carrying away the topsoil and leaving behind an infertile mix of dust and sand. These factors combined transforms degraded land into desert. Desertification is fast growing in the Middle East, supported mostly by strong winds carried from the Indian Ocean. The desertification in Mongolia is supported by strong gales from China. The large amount of factories in China also release toxic particles into this air which cause the desert land to be even more infertile.








      2.  Research Objectives


Our objective in this IRS project is to help solve and prevent desertification. As some of the solutions do make drastic change, we plan to create a solution that will effective affect a wide skill desertification. By using the various methods like decreasing livestock in desert areas as human or livestock will affect the environment. Planting trees and grass land will eventually fertilise the sand making it into soil or using machines that irrigate the soil will not make drastic change.





3.  Literature Review (Brief summary of at least 3 sources that you have consulted with reference to your research topic)


200 words
Our group research topic is An investigation of the different approaches to solve the 21st century problem of Desertification. According to desertificationb.tripod(2014), desertification is caused by many factors such as overgrazing which does not allow the land to replenish its rich fertile soil and destruction of plants in dry areas which causes the rich fertile soil to be blown away by the wind making the soil land to become a dry land. According to unesco.org(2014),
Desertification is the accumulated result of ill-adapted land use and the effects of a harsh climate.The use of firewood is one of the principal causes of desertification. In tropical arid areas, wood is the principal source of domestic energy for cooking and lighting both in rural and urban populations. According to science.howstuffworks(2014) ,an overwhelming 90 percent of the people who live in dryland ecosystems -- those areas most prone to soil degradation and desertification -- are citizens of developing countries. This adds up to 2 billion people, mostly poor and marginalized, who are immediately affected by the deadly consequences of desertification.



        4.Proposed Hypotheses


50 words


We propose that we could collect data on how fast desertification is growing and the factors that affect it. Then, we plot it on a table. By using this information, we can get a plan by which countries affected by desertification can economically slow down or stop expanding desertification altogether.
Hence, by planting spring onions into four different boxes with different environment to find out which location can suit best to prevent desertification from spreading.



5. Research Plan (Describe how you intend to design your research i.e. who/what you are going to research on, how many respondents, your study area/location etc)


We cannot measure desertification. Hence, we will use experiments to find out the effectiveness of our methods : strip planting, planting, strip planting + water impounding , planting + water impounding. We will set four small experiments in boxes with the same equipment to make it a fair experiment and monitor them everyday for a week. The data will be determined from the number of plants still alive.


6.  Analysis of data




Day 1


 Plant 1

Observation 

Plants Alive : 6 

Plants Dead : 0

The plant was recently watered and seems to be healthy and green although the soil input was not enough to hold it firmly.






 Plant 2

Observation

Plant Alive : 6

Plant Dead : 0

The plant was recently watered and seems to be healthy and green although the soil input was not enough to hold it firmly.



 Plant 3

Observation

Plant Alive : 6

Plant Dead : 0

The plant was recently watered and seems to be healthy and water impounding was placed below it and it could not hold the plant well enough as soil was escaping enough with the wire gaze that was put in between them.

Plant 4

Observation

Plant Alive : 6

Plant Dead : 0

The plant was recently watered and seems to be healthy and water impounding was placed below it and it could not hold the plant well enough as soil was escaping enough with the wire gaze that was put in between them.







Day 2

                                                                                                         


 Plant 1 

Observation

Plants Alive : 6

Stalks Alive : 24

Plant Dead : 0

Stalks dead : 6

The plant was watered yesterday and recently, some stalks have withered.
Plant 2 

Observation

Plants Alive : 6

Stalks Alive : 26

Plant Dead : 0

Stalks dead : 4

The plant was watered yesterday and recently, some stalks have withered.
 Plant 3 

Observation

Plants Alive : 6

Stalks Alive : 29

Plant Dead : 0

Stalks dead : 1

The plant was watered yesterday and recently, some stalks have withered.Although it has water impounding to keep it alive.
 Plant 4 

Observation

Plants Alive : 6

Stalks Alive : 29

Plant Dead : 0

Stalks dead : 1

The plant was watered yesterday and recently, some stalks have withered.Although it has water impounding to keep it alive.








Day 3




  Plant 1

Observation

Plants Alive : 5

Stalks Alive : 22

Plant Dead : 0

Stalks dead : 8

The plant was watered days ago and recently, some stalks have withered.
 Plant 2

Observation

Plants Alive : 6

Stalks Alive : 23

Plant Dead : 0

Stalks dead : 7

The plant was watered days ago and recently, some stalks have withered.
  Plant 3 

Observation

Plants Alive : 6

Stalks Alive : 26

Plant Dead : 0

Stalks dead : 4

The plant was watered days ago and recently, some stalks have withered.Although it has water impounding to keep it alive.

Plant 4

Observation

Plants Alive : 6

Stalks Alive : 26

Plant Dead : 0

Stalks dead : 4

The plant was watered days ago and recently, some stalks have withered.Although it has water impounding to keep it alive.







Day 4


Plant 1

Observation

Plants Alive : 3

Stalks Alive : 12

Plant Dead : 3

Stalks dead : 18

The plant was watered days ago and recently, most stalks have withered.
 Plant 2

Observation

Plants Alive : 3

Stalks Alive : 15

Plant Dead : 3

Stalks dead : 14

The plant was watered days ago and recently, half the stalks have withered.
Plant 3

Observation

Plants Alive : 4

Stalks Alive : 17

Plant Dead : 2

Stalks dead : 12

The plant was watered days ago and recently, some stalks have withered.Although it has water impounding to keep it alive.
Plant 4

Observation

Plants Alive : 4

Stalks Alive : 18

Plant Dead : 2

Stalks dead : 13

The plant was watered days ago and recently, some stalks have withered.Although it has water impounding to keep it alive.






7. Overall assessment on feasibility and manageability of the research (justify why your research can be managed and results be achieved within the time-frame)


50 word

We believe that we could do this within the time spent given as the deadline given by the teacher is reasonable with extra time to spent. There is a lot of information about desertification online and they are easily accessible. There are information online about a solution to desertification and what are the causes and factors affecting. Although we do not cooperate with each other at times we do things fast and effective together as everyone is unique and have a sense of time management.  

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