Desertification Reading Exercise & Useful Vocab

Reading lesson on Desertification to develop ideas and vocabulary for IELTS.  This lesson will provide you with ideas and vocabulary for IELTS writing task 2, speaking part 3 and the reading test.

Desertification: IELTS Environmental Topic

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.

Questions 1 – 8

Match each paragraph below to a title from the list. Not all letters will be used.

  • A) Overgrazing
  • B) Mass migration
  • C) Overpopulation
  • D) Polluted drinking water
  • E) Famine
  • F) Extinction of species
  • G) Deforestation
  • H) Poverty
  • I) Unsustainable agriculture techniques
  • J) Soil infertility

Reading Passage: Desertification Causes and Effects

Causes of Desertification

1) Trees are being cut down at much larger scale than ever before to be used as fuel, to provide products we use in our daily life, or to simply create more space for agriculture to sustain growing human population. Once the trees and other vegetation in an area are gone, there is nothing left to hold the soil in place.

2) Our planet’s ecosystems sustain life only when balanced. They can cope with incremental challenges and adapt but beyond a certain tipping point they collapse. A rapid increase in the number of people demands higher amounts of natural resources and expands more and more over the landscape, leading to increased desertification.

3) Improper irrigation methods used in arid areas, such as canal irrigation, lead to a buildup of salt in the soil and make it difficult for crops and other plants to grow, increasing desertification. Similarly harmful is cultivation of already deteriorated lands. Through inconsiderate farming methods, farmers only speed up the process of desertification in exchange for poor quality crops with low economic value.

4) In arid regions, grass and other vegetation is necessary to keep the soil in place. If such vegetation is used as feed for cattle without sustainable control, there is nothing that remains to prevent soil from blowing or washing away, and if this process occurs long enough, it can lead to desertification.

Effects of Desertification

5) As desertification occurs, the soil can be blown or washed away, and valuable soil nutrients are lost. As the soil dries out, it hardens and it becomes difficult for any rainfall that does occur to penetrate below the soil’s surface. And what remains left is a lifeless pile of dust instead of a life-giving medium.

6) Due to drought conditions and a loss of productive land, local people find themselves and their livestock experiencing starvation.

7) Desertification events have been a major driver behind the movement of large human populations throughout history. When soils are not able to support their civilisation, people set on the move to look for better locations.

8) Species that once lived in a fertile and productive climate may not survive in a newly desertified region.

Answers

The answers are now available for this reading lesson. Click below for Answers:

[expand title=”Answers”]

Please remember that in the real IELTS test, if you are asked to write a letter, you must write the letter and not the word. Always following instructions very carefully for IELTS.

  1. G
    1. Deforestation. Keywords: Trees are being cut down
  2. C
    1. Overpopulation. Keywords: A rapid increase in the number of people
  3. I
    1. Unsustainable agriculture techniques. Keywords: Improper irrigation methods / inconsiderate farming methods
  4. A
    1. Overgrazing. Keywords: feed for cattle without sustainable control
  5. J
    1. Soil infertility. Keywords: valuable soil nutrients are lost /  soil dries out / lifeless pile of dust
  6. E
    1. Famine. Keywords: people find themselves and their livestock experiencing starvation.
  7. B
    1. Mass migration. Keywords: movement of large human populations
  8. F
    1. Extinction of species. Keywords: Species …………………. may not survive …

All reading exercises on ieltsliz.com have been designed by myself to help you prepare for your IELTS test.   

Liz[/expand]

All the best

Liz

Comments

  1. John justin says

    I got a perfect score liz. Thanks, but I need to focus on my time. Need to practice more. This is a big help though. 😊👌👌

  2. I got 4/8 disappoined

  3. Thanks LIZ.
    I got 8/8.
    i am writing in April, hoping to learn more before then.

  4. I don’t believe it.
    I’ve got all correct. I’ve been studying for months. My level has been improved with your advises.
    Thank you so much.

    • I’m really glad for you 🙂 Now, it is time for you to practice with real tests in the IELTS Cambridge test books. You will need to apply your skills to a long passage.

  5. Thank you Liz…You are the best

  6. DEWNI KITHARA says

    Thanks Liz..
    This is my first practise..
    I got 5/8..
    💪🙏

  7. Kumar Nitol says

    I scored 8/8……..thanks Liz for this practice lesson…….and I guess I encounter more difficulty in the first passage in Cambridge books 🙂

  8. I got 7/8. Very useful exercise, thanks

  9. Hi, I got 6/8. as you said i applied the technique it is really improved. Thank you so much. I’m very glad to find this website before my IELTS preparation.

  10. Got 10/10

  11. Thank you Liz..l got 7/8
    I find your website so helpful.

  12. God Bless u Liz

  13. Thanks Liz ! I got 7/8, but i think terms like overgrazing, Famine, one has to be familiar with them in order to relate and answer correctly.

  14. Wow! I got 8/8. Thank you very much Liz. I find your website very useful for my preparation.

  15. Thank you Liz ^^ It’s been really helpful in preparing me for my IELTS exam

  16. Thank you a lot Liz!
    I have got 7/8
    I’m happy for it.

  17. Excellent Job

  18. Thank you Dear Liz, Your study materials are really helpful, God bless u in abundance. LOVE from India

  19. Finally! I got 8/8 yes! thank you.

  20. Love you.. lizz..you r best…

  21. Mayumi Shehara says

    Thank you so much dear Liz.. I achieved 8/8 and all your materials are so helpful! Much more blessings to you!

  22. Charles Enoma says

    Thank you Liz. I got 8/8. Charles from Nigeria

  23. Very helpful..Tnx dear Liz:*

  24. dare ayanwale says

    Below are my answers. I have done two of your exercise now and i got 100% in the first and 90% in this also. Thanks for the TIPS, very helpful
    1.G
    2.C
    3.I
    4.
    5.J
    6. E
    7.B
    8.F

  25. Thank you Liz. Yours is the best & most dependable site I have ever come through .

  26. shilpa vincent says

    I got 7/8

  27. Wao, i got 8/8 thank you liz for this wonderful platform. I need your blessing my exam is this week.

  28. G,C,I,A,E,H,B,F 6/8

  29. 8/8
    in less than 10 minutes

  30. 7/8

  31. 1. G
    2. C
    3. I
    4. A
    5. J
    6. E
    7. B
    8. F

    8/8

    Posted my comments yesterday. Not sure why it did not appear here

  32. 1;G
    2:C
    3:I
    4:E
    5:J
    6:H
    7:B
    8:A

  33. 1) G
    2) C
    3) I
    4) A
    5) J
    6) E
    7) B
    8) F

  34. G
    C
    E
    I
    J
    H
    B
    F

  35. Suraj timalsena says

    1) G
    2) C
    3) I
    4) A
    5) J
    6) E
    7) B
    8) F

  36. 1. G
    2. C
    3. I
    4. A
    5.J
    6. E
    7. B
    8. F

  37. G,C,I,A,J,E,B,F

  38. 1)G
    2) C
    3) I
    4) A
    5) J
    6) E
    7) B
    8) F

  39. 1.G
    2.C
    3.J
    4.A
    5.E
    6.H
    7.B
    8.F

  40. 1 – G
    2 – C
    3 – I
    4 – A
    5 – J
    6 – E
    7 – B
    8 – F

  41. Juned Ahmed says

    1-G
    2-C
    3-I
    4-E
    5-J
    6-H
    7-B
    8-F

  42. 1-G
    2-C
    3-I
    4-A
    5-J
    6-E
    7-B
    8-F

  43. 1. G
    2. C
    3. I
    4. J
    5. E
    6. H
    7. F

  44. 1. G
    2. C
    3. I
    4. A
    5. J
    6. H
    7. B
    8. F

  45. 1-g
    two-c
    3-i
    4-a
    5-j
    ix-e
    even-m
    8-f

  46. 1G, 2C, 3J, 4A, 5I, 6E, 7B, 8F

  47. 1.G
    2.C
    3.I
    4.A
    5.J
    6.E
    7.B
    8.F

  48. 1) G
    2) C
    3)I
    4)A
    5)J
    6)H
    7)B
    8)F

  49. Charles Rolland says

    Hi Liz, These are my answers for the reading passage on desertification: (1).G (2).C (3).I (4).A (5).J (6).E (7).B (8).F. Thanks

  50. Charles E. Rolland says

    Hi Liz, These are my answers for the reading passage on desertification: (1).G (2).C (3).I (4).A (5).J (6).E (7).B (8).F. Thanks

  51. 1. G
    2. C
    3. I
    4. A
    5. J
    6. E
    7. B
    8. F

  52. G
    C
    I
    J
    D
    A
    B
    F

  53. Pabitra K Bhattacharjee says

    1 G
    2 C
    3 J
    4 A
    5 E
    6 H
    7 B
    8 F

  54. G
    C
    I
    A
    J
    E
    B
    F

  55. 1. G
    2. C
    3.I
    4.A
    5.J
    6.E
    7.B
    8.F

  56. 1. G
    2. H
    3. E
    4. A
    5. J
    6. B
    7.I
    8. F

  57. G C I A J H B F

  58. Amisha raut says

    1- g
    2- c
    3-i
    4 -a
    5-j
    6- h
    7-b
    8- g

  59. 1. G
    2. C
    3. I
    4. A
    5. J
    6. E
    7. B
    8. F

  60. Sindhu Swamy says

    1.G
    2.C
    3.I
    4.A
    5.J
    6.H
    7.B
    8.F

  61. Chandarketu kumar says

    1. G
    2. C
    3. I
    4. A
    5. J
    6. E
    7. B
    8. F

  62. G, A, I, J, E, H, B, F

  63. 1-G
    2-c
    3-b
    4-a
    5-h
    6-i
    7-j
    8-f

  64. 1-G
    2-C
    3-I
    4-A
    5-J
    6-E
    7-B
    8-F

  65. Renex Rozario says

    G
    C
    I
    A
    J
    E
    B
    F

  66. Shanika Weragoda says

    1 – G
    2- E
    3- I
    4- A
    5- J
    6- H
    7- B
    8- F

  67. 1)G
    2)C
    3)I
    4)A
    5)H
    6)E
    7)B
    8)J

  68. Ram krishna says

    1.G
    2.C
    3.I
    4.A
    5.J
    6.E
    7.B
    8.F

  69. 1–F,G
    2–C
    3–I
    4–A
    5–B,D
    6–H
    7–E
    8–J

  70. Manpreet Singh says

    1. Deforestation
    2. Overpopulation
    3. Unsustainable irrigation methods
    4. Overgazing
    5. Soil infertility
    6. Famine
    7. Mass migration
    8. Extinction of species

  71. Shubhneet kaur says

    1.G
    1.C
    3.I
    4.A
    5.J
    6.E
    7.B
    8.F

  72. 1- G
    2- C
    3- I
    4- A
    5- J
    6- E
    7- B
    8- F

  73. 1) G
    2) C
    3) I
    4)A
    5) J
    6) E
    7)B
    8) F

  74. Esther Maureen Matola says

    1=G
    2=C
    3=I
    4=A
    5=J
    6=E
    7=B
    8=F

  75. Huairen Zhang says

    G C I A J H B F

  76. 1: c
    2: a
    3: i
    4: f
    5: g
    6 : e
    7 : b
    8: j

  77. Shubhangi Gupta says

    G
    C
    I
    A
    J
    E
    B
    F

  78. Wellington says

    1 ; Deforestration G
    2; Overpopulation C
    3; Unsustainable agricultural technics I
    4; Overgrazing A
    5; Soil infertility J
    6; Famine E
    7; Mass migration B
    8; Extinction of species F

  79. 1. G
    2. C
    3. I
    4. A
    5. J
    6. E
    7. B
    8. F

  80. 1. G
    2. C
    3, I
    4. A
    5. J
    6. E
    7. B
    8. F

  81. 1:G
    2:C
    3:I
    4:A
    5:J
    6:E
    7:B
    8:F

  82. 1 G 2 C 3I 4 A 5J 6 E. 7 B 8 F

  83. Kenalemang Juliah Osenotse says

    1-g
    2_c
    3_i
    4_a
    5_j
    6_h
    7_b
    8_f

  84. Cynthia ifeoma says

    G
    F
    J
    E
    I
    H
    C
    B

  85. RUPESH SOPHAT says

    1-G
    2-C
    3-I
    4-A,
    5-J
    6-H
    7-B
    8-F

  86. Hannah Bautista says

    1.G
    2.C
    3.I
    4.A
    5.J
    6.E
    7.B
    8.F

  87. sunita sharma says

    1. G
    2. C
    3. I
    4. A
    5. J
    6. H
    7. B
    8. F

  88. Dilruba Akter says

    G
    C
    I
    A
    J
    E
    B
    F

  89. Sanni Wasiu says

    G C I A J E B F

  90. Ninh Hai Nam says

    1. G
    2. C
    3. I
    4. J
    5. J
    6. E
    7. B
    8. F

  91. 1. G
    2. C
    3. I
    4. A
    5. J
    6. E
    7. B
    8. F

  92. 1-G
    2-C
    3-I
    4-A
    5-J
    6-E
    7-B
    8-F

  93. Eman Al-Chalabi says

    1. G
    2.C
    3. I
    4. A
    5. J
    6. E
    7. B
    8. F

  94. Furqan Zeb says

    1-F
    2-C
    3-I
    4-J
    5-D
    6-H
    7-B
    8-F
    Please reply and give my answers a band score

  95. 1.G
    2.C
    3.I
    4.A
    5.E
    6.H
    7.B
    8.F

  96. Thanks for the exercise Liz.
    1.G
    2.C
    3.I
    4.A
    5.J
    6.E
    7.B
    8.F

  97. 1.G
    2.C
    3.I
    4.A
    5.J
    6.E
    7.B
    8.F

  98. Gurvinder singh says

    These are the answers of reading
    Hlo liz mam
    1 G
    2. C
    3. I
    4. A
    5. J
    6. H
    7. B
    8. F
    Could you please check all of these

  99. 1.G
    2.C
    3.I
    4.A
    5.J
    6.E
    7.B
    8.F

  100. G
    C
    I
    A
    J
    E
    B
    F

  101. Nikhil Menon says

    Nikhil says:-
    1.G
    2.C
    3.I
    4.A
    5.J
    6.E
    7.B
    8.F

  102. G, C, I, A, J, E, B, F

  103. 1. G
    2. C
    3.C
    4. E
    5. J
    6. H
    7. B
    8. F

  104. Oluwatosin heritage says

    G C I A J E B F

  105. Oluwatosin heritage says

    Answer to deforestation
    1 G,2 C,3 I 4 A 5 J 6 E 7 B, 8 F

  106. G
    C
    I
    A
    J
    E
    B
    F

  107. 1-G
    2-C
    3-I
    4-A
    5-J
    6-E
    7-B
    8-F

  108. G
    C
    I
    A
    J
    E
    B
    F

  109. 1 – G
    2 – C
    3 – I
    4 – A
    5 – J
    6 – E
    7 – B
    8 – F
    Thanks Liz

  110. 1) G
    2) C
    3) I
    4) A
    5) J
    6) E
    7) B
    8) F

  111. 1. G
    2. C
    3. I
    4. A
    5. J
    6. E
    7. B
    8. F

  112. 1-g
    2-C
    3-J
    4-G
    5-I
    6-E
    7-B
    88-F

  113. Ans
    1. G
    2. C
    3. I
    4. A
    5. J
    6. E
    7. B
    8. F

  114. Aruba Walia says

    1.G
    2.C
    3.I
    4.A
    5.J
    6.E
    7.B
    8.F

  115. Chris Morris says

    1 Deforestation
    2 Overpopulation
    3 Unsustainable Agricultural Techniques
    4 Overgrazing
    5 Soil Infertility
    6 Famine
    7 Mass Migration
    8 Extinction

  116. Answers:
    1–G
    2–C
    3–I
    4—A
    5–J
    6–H
    7–B
    8–F

  117. Ejimokun Abimbola says

    G C I A J E B F

  118. No 6 is E famine
    No 7 mass immigration
    No 1 G

  119. 1_8 answer…..G_C_I_A_J_E_B_F

  120. Sonam Choden says

    Hi Liz
    My answers for the Reading Practice topic: Desertification Causes and Effects are given below:
    1. G
    2. C
    3. I
    4. A
    5. E
    6. H
    7. B
    8. F

    Thank you.

  121. 1-g
    2-c
    3-i
    4-a
    5-j
    6-h
    7-b
    8-f

  122. 1. Deforestation
    2. Overpopulation
    3 Unsustainable agriculture technique
    4. Overgrazing
    5. Soil infertility
    6. Famine
    7. Mass migration
    8. Extinction of species

  123. 1. Deforestation g
    2. Over population c
    3. Unsustainable agriculture techinques i
    4. Overgrazing a
    5.soil infertility
    6.famine j
    7.mass migration b
    8.exctinction of species f

  124. Answer of reading passage desertification cause & effects
    1.G
    2. H
    3. I
    4.A
    5.J
    6.E
    7.B
    8.F

  125. 1- defotestation
    2- overpopulation
    3- unsustainable agricultural
    4- overgrazing
    5- soil infertility
    6- famine
    7- mass migration
    8- exitinction species

  126. 1. G
    2. I
    3. H
    4. A
    5. J
    6. E
    7. B
    8. F

  127. Dear Liz,
    I am one of your follower for my IELTS General Training.
    In writing task 1 you have wrote informal apology letter starts with Dear Emily, Sorry it’s taken me so long….
    my question is that “Is it ok to write 3rd form i.e. taken with it’s?” if yes then kindly explain because I am not getting it.

    Regards

  128. Sombit Roy says

    1-G
    2-C
    3-I
    4-A
    5-J
    6-E
    7-B
    8-F

    Please verify…liz

  129. Priyanka Chopra says

    1.G..2.C..3.I..4.A..5.E..6.H..7.B..8.F

  130. 1J
    2C
    3.E
    4.I
    5.A
    6H
    7.B
    8.F

  131. 1- G
    2-C
    3-I
    4-A
    5-J
    6-E
    7-B
    8-F

  132. 1.G
    2.E
    3. I
    4.A
    5.J
    6.C
    7.B
    8.F

  133. 1- G
    2- C
    3 – I
    4- A
    5- J
    6- E
    7- B
    8- F

  134. M. Vinod Kumar says

    Hi, Madam Liz
    My answers are : 1-G, 2-C, 3-I, 4-A, 5-J, 6-E, 7-B, 8-F

    Thanks for the exercise.

  135. Sanjida kabir says

    Ans.deforestation.

  136. 1. G
    2. C
    3.I
    4.A
    5.J
    6.E
    7.B
    8.F

  137. Fabrizio Ottaviani says

    6: E

  138. HINA AFROZ says

    1 (G) deforestation
    2 (I) unsustainable agriculture
    3 (H) poverty
    4 (A) overheating
    5 (j) soil infertility
    6 (E) famine
    7 (B) mass migration
    8 (F) extinction of species

  139. 1-G, 2-C, 3-I, 4-B, 5-J, 6-H, 7- E, 8-F

  140. Fabrizio Ottaviani says

    1: G
    2: C
    3: I
    4: A
    5: J
    6: H
    7: B
    8: F

  141. 1. B
    2. C
    3. I
    4. G
    5. J
    6. E
    7. B
    8. F

  142. 1.G
    2.C
    3.I
    4.A
    5.J
    6.E
    7.F

  143. 1 G
    2 C
    3 D
    4 A
    5 J
    6 E
    7 B
    8 F

  144. Yeshey wangmo says

    1. G
    2. C
    3. I
    4. A
    5. J
    6. H
    7. B
    8. F

  145. 1-G
    2-C
    3-I
    4-A
    5-J
    6-E
    7-B
    8-F

  146. 1.G
    2.C
    3.I
    4.A
    5.J
    6.E
    7.B
    8. F

  147. 1. G
    2. C
    3. I
    4. A
    5. J
    6. E
    7. B
    8. F

  148. 1)G
    2) C
    3) I
    4) J
    5) A
    6) E
    7) B
    8) F

  149. GCHIJEBF

  150. Srishti Garg says

    Ans: 1) Deforestation
    2) Overpopulation
    3) Unsustainable agriculture techniques
    4) Overgrazing
    5) Soil infertility
    6) Famine
    7) Mass migration
    8) Extinction of species

  151. GCHAJEBF

  152. 1-g, 2-c,3-I, 4-a,5-j,
    6-e,7h,8-f

  153. Pramodh. K says

    1:I
    2:C
    3:J
    4:A
    5:F
    6:H
    7:B
    8:E

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