Countries and territories under the Secretariat of the Pacific Community are being urged to step up measures to manage their scarce natural resources and prevent escalating land degradation and desertification.
The SPC was reminding Pacific Island countries to take heed to embrace sustainable land development while marking World Desertification Day.
The SPC's Land Use Policy Advisor, Inoke Ratukalou, says people need to be educated on how to conserve natural resources and combat problems raised by rapid land developments.
"The message to the countries is that they virtually have to use their land according to the capability of the land to sustain products and whatever land they are using. And make communities able to understand the capability of their resources, for them to be able to make good decisions on how to use those resources."
Inoke Ratukalou says each nation's agriculture, forestry and conservation ministries must take responsibility to activate strategies to maintain sustainable land use.