Why did the Sahara turn into a desert?

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Why does fertile land turn into sand and how exactly did this fertile land form in the first place?

In: 10

The top level is this…

Deforestation

Loss of grass causing soil erosion

Climate changes

Water loss

Weather patterns across the globe were very different during the last ice age.

Most of Europe and North America were in a permanent winter and Northern Africa in turn got a lot more moisture turning it into fertile land.

As the weather patterns changed the Sahara started to form.

But it appears that Humans may have accelerated the process considerably. There is evidence that humans raising grazing animals on the edges of the growing Sahara ate enough of the plant matter to encourage the growth of the desert. That combined with deforestation destroyed the soils ability to retain moisture.

over grazing –

first over graze with cattle, then when there is not enough pasture for cattle, bring in sheep after sheep bring in goats.

goats are really good at creating deserts (cows and sheep nibble goats will eat the roots of plants)

also using fire to clear land is another great way to create deserts

Is this really possible? Overgrazing results in creating deserts? I have a lot of arguments with my vegetarian friends who criticise me for consuming meat. May be this is another topic I use as a comeback!