Which among the following are the main determinants of desertification in a geographical area on Earth?
1. Patterns of Atmospheric Circulation
2. Quality of Soil
3. Quantity of Insolation
4. Latitudes and Longitudes
Choose the correct options from the codes given below:

Answer: [B] Only 1 & 2

Desertification involves ecological changes that sap land of its ability to sustain agriculture and human habitation. As a result of the unsound use of land, deserts are creeping outward in Africa, Asia, Australia and the Americas.

We should note that the true deserts extend over areas where less than 100 mm of rain falls annually. However the amount of rain-or the lack of it-is not the  sole determinant of deserts. In this question, Option 1. Patterns of Atmospheric Circulation is  correct. Because this is the main determinant of the desertification. The second option i.e. Quality of Soil is also correct. The quality of the soil determines  how rapidly the rainfall evaporates. The third option is Quantity of Insolation. This can be eliminated  as wrong answer because, we have maximum quantity of Insolation on equator still, deserts are mostly in tropics. Similarly, the Latitudes and Longitudes are not determinants of desertification. The only fundamental truth is that deserts are the product of a  dry climate, and they prevail where global patterns of atmospheric circulation dictate that rain will be absent. One of the main causes of desert spread is  deforestation today.

This question is a part of GKToday's Integrated IAS General Studies Module