The Sahel (/səˈhɛl/) is the ecoclimatic and biogeographic zone of transition in Africa between the Sahara to the north and the Sudanian Savanna to the south. Having a semi-arid climate, it stretches across the south-central latitudes of Northern Africa between the Atlantic Ocean and the Red Sea. The name is derived from the Arabic word sāḥil (ساحل, Arabic pronunciation: [ˈsaːħil]) meaning "coast" or "shore" in a figurative sense (in reference to the southern edge of the vast Sahara), while the name in Swahili means "coastal [dweller]" in a literal sense.
The Sahel part of Africa includes (from west to east) parts of northern Senegal, southern Mauritania, central Mali, northern Burkina Faso, the extreme south of Algeria, Niger, the extreme north of Nigeria, central Chad, central and southern Sudan, the extreme north of South Sudan, Eritrea, Cameroon, Central African Republic and the extreme north of Ethiopia.
The Sahel spans 5,400 km (3,360 mi) from the Atlantic Ocean in the west to the Red Sea in the east, in a belt that varies from several hundred to a thousand kilometers (c. 600 miles) in width, covering an area of 3,053,200 square kilometers (1,178,850 sq mi). It is a transitional ecoregion of semi-arid grasslands, savannas, steppes, and thorn shrublands lying between the wooded Sudanian Savanna to the south and the Sahara to the north.
The topography of the Sahel is mainly flat; most of the region lies between 200 and 400 meters (660 and 1,310 ft) in elevation. Several isolated plateaus and mountain ranges rise from the Sahel, but are designated as separate ecoregions because their flora and fauna are distinct from the surrounding lowlands. Annual rainfall varies from around 100–200 mm (4–8 in) in the north of the Sahel to around 600 mm (24 in) in the south.
The Sahel is mostly covered in grassland and savanna, with areas of woodland and shrubland. Grass cover is fairly continuous across the region, dominated by annual grass species such as Cenchrus biflorus, Schoenefeldia gracilis and Aristida stipoides. Species of acacia are the dominant trees, with Acacia tortilis the most common, along with Acacia senegal and Acacia laeta. Other tree species include Commiphora africana, Balanites aegyptiaca, Faidherbia albida, and Boscia senegalensis. In the northern part of the Sahel, areas of desert shrub, including Panicum turgidum and Aristida sieberana, alternate with areas of grassland and savanna. During the long dry season, many trees lose their leaves and the predominantly annual grasses die.
The Sahel was formerly home to large populations of grazing mammals, including the scimitar-horned oryx (Oryx dammah), dama gazelle (Gazella dama), Dorcas gazelle (Gazella dorcas), red-fronted gazelle (Gazella rufifrons), the giant prehistoric buffalo (Pelorovis) and Bubal hartebeest (Alcelaphus busephalus buselaphus), along with large predators like the African wild dog (Lycaon pictus), the Northwest African cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus hecki), the Northeast African cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus soemmeringii), the lion (Panthera leo). The larger species have been greatly reduced in number by over-hunting and competition with livestock, and several species are vulnerable (Dorcas gazelle, cheetah, lion and red-fronted gazelle), endangered (Dama gazelle and African wild dog), or extinct (the Scimitar-horned oryx is probably extinct in the wild, and both Pelorovis and the Bubal hartebeest are now extinct).
The Sahel has a tropical, hot steppe climate (Köppen climate classification BSh). The climate is typically hot, sunny, dry and somewhat windy all year long. The Sahel's climate is similar to, but less extreme than, the climate of the Sahara desert located just to the north.
The Sahel mainly receives a low to a very low amount of precipitation annually. The steppe has a very long, prevailing dry season and a short rainy season. The precipitation is also extremely irregular, and varies considerably from season to season. Most of the rain usually falls during only one or two months, while the other months may remain absolutely dry. The entire Sahel region generally receives between 100 mm and 600 mm of rain yearly. A system of subdivisions often adopted for the Sahelian climate based on annual rainfall is as follows: the Saharan-Sahelian climate, with mean annual precipitation between around 100 and 200 mm (such as Khartoum, Sudan), the strict Sahelian climate, with mean annual precipitation between around 200 and 600 mm (such as Kiffa, Mauritania) and the Sahelian-Sudanese climate, with mean annual precipitation between around 200 and 400 mm (such as Niamey, Niger). The relative humidity in the steppe is low to very low, often between 10% and 25% during the dry season and between 25% and 75% during the rainy season. The least humid places have a relative humidity under 35%.
The Sahel is characterized by constant, intense heat, with an unvarying temperature. The Sahel rarely experiences cold temperatures. During the hottest period, the average high temperatures are generally between 36 and 42 °C (97 and 108 °F) (and even more in the hottest regions), often for more than three months, while the average low temperatures are around 25 to 31 °C (77 to 88 °F). During the "coldest period", the average high temperatures are between 27 and 33 °C (81 and 91 °F) and the average low temperature are between 15 and 21 °C (59 and 70 °F). Everywhere in the Sahel, the average mean temperature is over 18 °C (64 °F) due to the tropical climate.
The Sahel has a high to very high sunshine duration year-round, between 2,700 hours (about 61% of the daylight hours) and 3,500 hours (more than 79% of the daylight hours). The sunshine duration in the Sahel approaches desert levels, and is comparable to that in the Arabian Desert, for example, even though the Sahel is only a steppe and not a desert. The cloud cover is low to very low. For example, Niamey, Niger has 3,082 hours of bright sunshine; Gao, Mali has near 3,385 hours of sunshine; Timbuktu, Mali has 3,409 sunny hours, and N'Djamena, Chad has 3,205 hours of sunlight.
Traditionally, most of the people in the Sahel have been semi-nomads, farming and raising livestock in a system of transhumance, which is probably the most sustainable way of utilizing the Sahel. The difference between the dry North with higher levels of soil nutrients and the wetter South with more vegetation, is utilized by having the herds graze on high quality feed in the North during the wet season, and trek several hundred kilometers to the South to graze on more abundant, but less nutritious feed during the dry period.
Around 4000 BC, the climate of the Sahara and the Sahel started to become drier at an exceedingly fast pace. This climate change caused lakes and rivers to shrink rather significantly and caused increasing desertification. This, in turn, decreased the amount of land conducive to settlements and caused migrations of farming communities to the more humid climate of West Africa.
The Sahelian kingdoms were a series of monarchies centered in the Sahel between the 9th and 18th centuries. The wealth of the states came from controlling the trans-Saharan trade routes across the desert, especially the slave trade with the Islamic world. Their power came from having large pack animals like camels and horses that were fast enough to keep a large empire under central control and were also useful in battle. All of these empires were quite decentralized with member cities having a great deal of autonomy. The first large Sahelian kingdoms emerged after AD 750 and supported several large trading cities in the Niger Bend region, including Timbuktu, Gao, and Djenné.
The Sahel states were hindered from expanding south into the forest zone of the Ashanti and Yoruba peoples as mounted warriors were all but useless in the forests and the horses and camels could not survive the heat and diseases of the region.
The Eastern Sahel (the part in what is now Sudan) did not fall to the European powers but was annexed by Muhammad Ali of Egypt in 1820. It came under British administration as part of the Sultanate of Egypt in 1914. The Sudanese Sahel became part of independent Sudan in 1956, and South Sudan in turn achieved its independence from Sudan proper in 2011.
For hundreds of years, the Sahel region has experienced regular droughts and megadroughts. One megadrought lasted from 1450 to 1700, 250 years. There was a major drought in the Sahel in 1914 caused by annual rains far below average, leading to large-scale famine. From 1951 to 2004, the Sahel experienced some of the most consistent and severe droughts in Africa. The 1960s saw a large increase in rainfall in the region, making the northern drier region more accessible. There was a push, supported by governments, for people to move northwards. When the long drought period from 1968 through 1974 began, grazing quickly became unsustainable and large-scale denuding of the terrain followed. Like the drought in 1914, this led to a large-scale famine, but this time somewhat tempered by international visibility and an outpouring of aid. This catastrophe led to the founding of the International Fund for Agricultural Development.
Between June and August 2010, famine struck the Sahel. Niger's crops failed to mature in the heat, 350,000 faced starvation, and 1,200,000 were at risk of famine. In Chad the temperature reached 47.6 °C (117.7 °F) on 22 June in Faya-Largeau, breaking a record set in 1961 at the same location. Niger tied its highest temperature record set in 1998, also on 22 June, at 47.1 °C in Bilma. That record was broken the next day, when Bilma hit 48.2 °C (118.8 °F). The hottest temperature recorded in Sudan was reached on 25 June, at 49.6 °C (121.3 °F) in Dongola, breaking a record set in 1987. Niger reported on 14 July that diarrhea, starvation, gastroenteritis, malnutrition, and respiratory diseases had sickened or killed many children. The new military junta appealed for international food aid and took serious steps to call on overseas help. On 26 July, the heat reached near-record levels over Chad and Niger, and in northern Niger about 20 people reportedly died of dehydration by 27 July.
The Sahel region faces environmental issues that are contributing to global warming. If the change in climate in the Sahel region "is not slowed-down and desertification possibly reversed through sustainable practices and any form of reforestation, it is only a matter of time before" countries like Niger lose their entire landmass to desert due to unchecked unsustainable human practises.:9 Over-farming, over-grazing, over-population of marginal lands, and natural soil erosion, have caused serious desertification of the region. This has affected shelter construction, making it necessary to change the used materials. The Woodless Construction project was introduced in Sahel in 1980 by the Development Workshop, achieving since then a high social impact in the region.
Major dust storms are a frequent occurrence as well. During November 2004, a number of major dust storms hit Chad, originating in the Bodélé Depression. This is a common area for dust storms, occurring on average on 100 days every year.
On 23 March 2010, a major sandstorm hit Mauritania, Senegal, Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Guinea, and inland Sierra Leone. Another struck in southern Algeria, inland Mauritania, Mali, and northern Ivory Coast at the same time.
The 2007 CAF Champions League was the 11th occurrence of the CAF Champions League, the most prestigious club football competition in Africa. Étoile du Sahel of Tunisia became champions for the first time, beating Al Ahly SC of Egypt 3–1 in a two-legged final. Étoile du Sahel participated in the 2007 FIFA Club World Cup in Japan as the representative from CAF.2010–11 Kuwaiti Federation Cup
The 4th Kuwaiti Federation Cup started on 5 September 2010.
The fourth Federation Cup is one of four competitions in the Kuwaiti 2010/2011 season. Fourteen clubs are taking part in the tournament.
They were divided into two groups of seven, and the winner and runner-up of each group will advance to the semi-finals.Al-Sahel
Al-Sahel (Arabic: السحل, also transliterated As-Sahel and As-Sehel) is a Syrian village in the An-Nabek District of the Rif Dimashq Governorate. According to the Syria Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS), al-Sahel had a population of 5,677 in the 2004 census. Its inhabitants are predominantly Sunni Muslims.Al-Sahel FC
Al-Sahel FC is a Saudi Arabian football (soccer) team in Anak, Qatif City playing at the Saudi Third Division.CAF Cup
The CAF Cup was an annual competition organised by the CAF for domestic leagues runners-up of member associations who have not qualified to one of the two pre-existing CAF international club competitions the African Cup of Champions Clubs or the African Cup Winners' Cup.Community of Sahel-Saharan States
The Community of Sahel-Saharan States (CEN-SAD; Arabic: تجمع دول الساحل والصحراء; French: Communauté des Etats Sahélo-Sahariens; Portuguese: Comunidade dos Estados Sahelo-Saarianos) aims to create a free trade area within Africa. There are questions with regard to whether its level of economic integration qualifies it under the enabling clause of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT).European Union Capacity Building Mission in Mali
The EU Capacity Building Mission in Mali (EUCAP Sahel Mali) was initiated on 15 April 2014 within the European Union Common Security and Defense Policy (CSDP) as a Capacity Building Mission in order to train local security forces in Mali.EUCAP Sahel Mali provides assistance and advice to the national police, the national gendarmerie and the national guard. This is done by improving the operational efficiency, re-establishing the respective hierarchical chains, reinforcing the role of judicial and administrative authorities, and facilitating the redeployment to the north of the country.
There are currently 20 police forces and 63 civilian staff deployed within this mission.Next to EUCAP Sahel Mali, there are currently further peace operations in Mali. These are the EU-training mission EUTM Mali, the UN-peacekeeping mission MINUSMA and African Union Mission MISAHEL.European Union Capacity Building Mission in Niger
EUCAP Sahel Niger is a capacity-building mission in Niger, run by the European Union's External Action service.Jdeideh
For similarly named places, please see Jdeideh (disambiguation).Jdeideh (Arabic: جديدة المتن translit. al-Judaydat), also Jdayde, Jdaideh and Jdeidet el-Matn, is a coastal municipality and the administrative capital of the Matn District in the Mount Lebanon Governorate.
Jdeideh has an area of approximately 6 km². It is located in the northern suburbs of Beirut city that comprise Greater Beirut. The municipality is formed of three villages of Jdeidet el-Matn, Bauchrieh and Sed el Bauchrieh, with a population of nearly 160,000 inhabitants.Jdeideh is an important industrial zone and a significant location for commercial and banking activity.Mostapha Sahel
Mostapha Sahel (5 May 1946 in Ouled Frej, El Jadida – 7 October 2012 in Rabat) was the minister of the interior of Morocco. He holds a degree in public law. He used to be minister of fishing. His successor was Chakib Benmoussa. After leaving the government he held the position of advisor to King Mohamed VI until his death.
Mostapha Sahel was also the CEO of the Tourism and Real estate firm SOMED.Nioro du Sahel
Nioro du Sahel often referred to as simply Nioro is a town and urban commune in the Kayes Region of western Mali, 241 km from the city of Kayes. It is located 275 miles ( by road) north-west of the capital Bamako. The commune as of 1998 had a population of 60,112 although current estimates are nearer 69,100 people.
Founded in about 1240 by a Diawando slave named Beydari Tamboura, Nioro attained its greatest height in the eighteenth century when it served as the capital of the Bambara kingdom of Kaarta. The town became an important trading center between Upper Senegal and the Sudan.
In the early 1850s, the Toucouleur conqueror El Hadj Umar Tall invaded Kaarta, forcing the kingdom's conversion to Islam; he built a great mosque in Nioro in 1854.
The town has an airstrip at Nioro Airport.North Africa
North Africa is a region encompassing the northern portion of the African continent. There is no singularly accepted scope for the region, and it is sometimes defined as stretching from the Atlantic shores of Morocco in the west, to Egypt's Suez Canal and the Red Sea in the east. Others have limited it to top North-Western countries like Algeria, Morocco, and Tunisia, a region that was known by the French during colonial times as “Afrique du Nord” and is known by all Arabs as the Maghreb (“West", The Western part of Arab World). The most commonly accepted definition includes Algeria, Sudan, Morocco, Tunisia, Libya and Egypt, the 6 countries that shape the top North of the African continent. Meanwhile, “North Africa”, particularly when used in the term North Africa and the Middle East, often refers only to the countries of the Maghreb and Libya. Egypt, being also part of the Middle East, is often considered separately, due to being both North African and Middle Eastern at the same time.
North Africa includes a number of Spanish and Portuguese possessions, Plazas de soberanía, Ceuta and Melilla and the Canary Islands and Madeira. The countries of North Africa share a common ethnic, cultural and linguistic identity that is unique to this region. Northwest Africa has been inhabited by Berbers since the beginning of recorded history, while the eastern part of North Africa has been home to the Egyptians. Between the A.D. 600s and 1000s, Arabs from the Middle East swept across the region in a wave of Muslim conquest. These peoples, physically quite similar, formed a single population in many areas, as Berbers and Egyptians merged into Arabic and Muslim culture. This process of Arabization and Islamization has defined the cultural landscape of North Africa ever since.
The distinction between North Africa, the Sahel and the rest of the continent is as follows:
Nineteenth century European explorers, attracted by the accounts of Ancient geographers or Arab geographers of the classical period, followed the routes by the nomadic people of the vast “empty” space. They documented the names of the stopping places they discovered or rediscovered, described landscapes, took a few climate measurements and gathered rock samples. Gradually, a map began to fill in the white blotch.
The Sahara and the Sahel entered the geographic corpus by way of naturalist explorers because aridity is the feature that circumscribes the boundaries of the ecumene. The map details included topographical relief and location of watering holes crucial to long crossings. The Arabic word “Sahel” (shore) and “Sahara” (desert) made its entry into the vocabulary of geography.
Latitudinally, the “slopes” of the arid desert, devoid of continuous human habitation, descend in step-like fashion toward the northern and southern edges of the Mediterranean that opens to Europe and the Sahel that opens to “Trab al Sudan.” Longitudinally, a uniform grid divides the central desert then shrinks back toward the Atlantic Ocean and the Red Sea. Gradually, the Sahara-Sahel is further divided into a total of twenty sub-areas: central, northern, southern, western, eastern, etc.
In this way, “standard” geography has determined aridity to be the boundary of the ecumene. It identifies settlements based on visible activity without regard for social or political organizations of space in vast, purportedly “empty” areas. It gives only cursory acknowledgement to what makes Saharan geography, and for that matter, world geography unique: mobility and the routes by which it flows.
The Sahel or “African Transition Zone” has been affected by many formative epochs in North African history ranging from Ottoman occupation to the Arab-Berber control of the Andalus. As a result, many modern African nation-states that are included in the Sahel evidence cultural similarities and historical overlap with their North African neighbours. In the present day, North Africa is associated with West Asia in the realm of geopolitics to form a Middle East-North Africa region. The Islamic influence in the area is also significant and North Africa is a major part of the Muslim world.
Some researchers have postulated that North Africa rather than East Africa served as the exit point for the modern humans who first trekked out of the continent in the Out of Africa migration.Pearl millet
Pearl millet (Pennisetum glaucum) is the most widely grown type of millet. It has been grown in Africa and South Asia since prehistoric times. The center of diversity, and suggested area of domestication, for the crop is in the Sahel zone of West Africa. Recent archaeobotanical research has confirmed the presence of domesticated pearl millet on the Sahel zone of northern Mali between 2500 and 2000 BC. Cultivation subsequently spread and moved overseas to India. The earliest archaeological records in Pakistan and India date to around 2000 BC, and it spread rapidly through Pakistan and India reaching South India by 1500 BC, based on evidence from the site of Hallur. Cultivation also spread throughout eastern and southern parts of Africa. Pearl millet is widely grown in the northeastern part of Nigeria (especially in Borno and Yobe states). It is a major source of food to the local villagers of that region. The crop grows easily in that region due to its ability to withstand harsh weather conditions like drought and flood. Records exist for cultivation of pearl millet in the United States in the 1850s, and the crop was introduced into Brazil in the 1960s.Sahel, Mali
Sahel is a commune in the Cercle of Kayes in the Kayes Region of south-western Mali. The main village (chef-lieu) is Bafarara. In 2009 the commune had a population of 11,630.Sahel Borj
Sahel Borj (Persian: ساحل برج, also Romanized as Sāḩel Borj) is a village in Ordughesh Rural District, Zeberkhan District, Nishapur County, Razavi Khorasan Province, Iran. At the 2006 census, its population was 1,726, in 459 families.Tunisian Cup
The Tunisian Cup is the top knockout tournament of the Tunisian football. It was created in 1922.Uttaran
Uttaran (English: Discarded / Hindi: उतरन) is an Indian soap opera that aired on Colors TV on weeknights.The show starred Tina Dutta, Rashami Desai, Nandish Sandhu/Vikas Bhalla, Rohit Khurana, Gaurav Chopra, Pratima Kazmi, Saurabh Raj Jain/Bharat Chawda, Chaitanya Choudhury, Mrunal Jain, Sreejita De and Ajay Chaudhary. It is one of the longest television series by episode count and ran originally from 2008 to 2015. It is third longest-running Indian television series of Colors TV. This series was dubbed into Tamil as Sindhu Bhairavi on Raj TV and in Malayalam as Valsalyam on Surya TVÉtoile Sportive du Sahel
The Étoile Sportive du Sahel (ESS, Arabic: النـجـم الرياضي الساحلي; transliterated: Najm Riadhi Sahli), or Étoile du Sahel (Arabic: النـجـم الساحلي), is a sports club from Sousse in the Sahel region of Tunisia, known primarily for its football and basketball team. The club also has sections for handball, volleyball, judo and wrestling. ESS was founded in 11 May 1925 after a general meeting under the chairmanship of Chedly Boujemla, Ali Laârbi and Ahmed Zaklaoui, at the headquarters of the Association of the ancient French-Arab School Laroussi Zarouk Street, in the heart of the ancient city of Sousse. The aim of the meeting was to establish a sports education society. The Tunisian flag was chosen in the selection of the colors of the team. The red shirt with the star and the white shorts. The French colonial authorities prevented the use of these colors, but with the insistence of the team leaders they prevailed and in the latter they played this kit. In English the name means Sport (or Athletic) Star of the Sahel
In Tunisia, Étoile du Sahel is considered to be one of the best clubs. For many years it had a reputation of playing entertaining football. In fact, the club has evolved recently into a more professional outfit capable of winning trophies at home and abroad. Since 1925, ESS has been crowned domestic champions on ten occasions.
On the continental side, Étoile du Sahel has won more CAF trophies than any other Tunisian team. The club has 1 CAF Champions League, 2 CAF Super Cup titles, 4 CAF Confederation Cup titles and 2 African Cup Winners' Cup. ESS was listed as one of the most valuable football clubs in Africa and one of the most widely supported teams in the continent.
Internationally, Étoile du Sahel was the first Tunisian club to participate in the FIFA Club World Cup. They competed in the fifth edition that took place in 2007 in Japan. the club became the second club to reach the FIFA Club World semi-final as the representative of CAF, after Al Ahly SC in 2006, as they defeated Pachuca CF at the quarter-final of 2007 FIFA Club World Cup.