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Gallagher Presents Images from "Desertification in China" at American University

Event Date:

October 29, 2009 | 6:30 PM EDT

Desertification is one of the most important environmental challenges facing the world today...


Sean Gallagher will speak at David Bosco's International Roundtable at American University Thursday evening at 6:30. During the day on Thursday, Sean will be presenting to Journalism Professor Bill Gentille's photojournalism and foreign correspondence classes.

Heat of the Moment: Desertification in China

Beijing-based photojournalist Sean Gallagher presents images from his travels on the "desertification train" across China.
Followed by a Q & A and discussion.

Thursday, October 29
6:30 p.m.
Hughes Building, Honors Lounge
American University

Desertification is one of the most important environmental challenges facing the world today, however, it is arguably the most under-reported. Desertification is the gradual transformation of arable and habitable land into desert, usually caused by climate change and/or the improper use of land. Each year, desertification and drought account for US$42 billion loss in food production. In China, nearly 20% of land area is desert.

As a result of a combination of poor farming practices, drought and increased demand for groundwater, desertification has become arguably China's most important environmental challenge. As the effects of increasing desertification appear, farmers are forced to abandon their land, levels of rural poverty rise and the intensity of sandstorms, which batter northern and western China each year, continue to intensify.

By traveling from Beijing on China's "desertification train," the K117-T69-K886 route that bisects China's major northern deserts, photojournalist Sean Gallagher reports on the various implications of desertification on people's lives across the breadth of China.

Sean Gallagher specializes in reporting social and environmental issues in Asia, with specific emphasis on China. His work has been published internationally, in print and online, in leading publications, and exhibited worldwide. His Pulitzer Center-supported Desertification in China project was a finalist in the prestigious International Photography Awards.


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