Here are some things you can do as a responsible traveller:
• Leave only footprints in the desert.
• Select tour operators that are in harmony with the landscape visited.
• Walk or ride on camels, donkeys or horses instead of driving 4x4s or other motor vehicles in the desert.
• Respect the local communities residing in the desert and appreciate their craft skills.
• Talk to the Berber and learn about their cultural tradition and nomadic wisdom.
• Share what you learnt from the trip with your friends.
As global citizens, we all have a vital role to play in preserving our wilderness. In fact, desertification is directly linked to global warming. When there is an increase in the average temperature, it enhances evaporation and dries up the top soil, thereby exposing the land to wind erosion and ultimately desertification. You can help put a stop to desertification by reducing our impact on global warming, such as participating in tree planting, reducing consumption and switching to a greener lifestyle.
Hopefully in the near future, solar technology will become feasible and economically viable in the Sahara Desert, thus helping to increase rural electrification and bring cleaner energy to the world.
While remaining optimistic, let us not forget to answer the call from the Sahara; to create a sustainable desert tourism industry, which minimises the impact on the ecosystem, empowers the local community and uses the revenue earned from tourism to combat desertification.