Deforestation

Deforestation refers to the cutting, clearing, and removal of rainforest or related ecosystems into less bio-diverse ecosystems such as pasture, cropland, or plantations. Examples of deforestation include conversion of forestland to farms, ranches, or urban use. Thus, deforestation is an important issue to be discussed. It has adverse effects on each living beings’ life. Deforestation has become a huge concern in today’s life as there has been a rise in the decline of forests. Trees are cut down in order to manufacture paper products as well as for livestock farming and so on.

Deforestation occurs for many reasons: trees are cut down to be used or sold as fuel or timber, while cleared land is used as pasture for livestock, plantations of commodities and settlements. The removal of trees without sufficient reforestation has resulted in damage to habitat, biodiversity loss and aridity. Deforestation has also been used in war to deprive an enemy of cover for its forces and also vital resources. A modern example of this was the use of Agent Orange by the United States military in Vietnam during the Vietnam War.

Deforested regions typically incur significant adverse soil erosion and frequently degrade into wasteland. CAUSES: According to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) secretariat, the overwhelming direct cause of deforestation is agriculture. Subsistence farming is responsible for 48% of deforestation; commercial agriculture is responsible for 32% of deforestation; logging is responsible for 14% of deforestation and fuel wood removals make up 5% of deforestation. Experts do not agree on whether industrial logging is an important contributor to global deforestation.

Some argue that poor people are more likely to clear forest because they have no alternatives, others that the poor lack the ability to pay for the materials and labour needed to clear forest. One study found that population increases due to high fertility rates were a primary driver of tropical deforestation in only 8% of cases ENVIRONMENTAL PROBLEMS: ATMOSPHERIC : Deforestation is a contributor to global warming and is often cited as one of the major causes of the enhanced greenhouse effect. Tropical deforestation is responsible for approximately 20% of world greenhouse gas emissions. orest degradation contribute about 12% of total anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions with a range from 6 to 17%. Deforestation causes carbon dioxide to linger in the atmosphere. As carbon dioxide accrues, it produces a layer in the atmosphere that traps radiation from the sun. The radiation converts to heat which causes global warming, which is better known as GREEN HOUSE EFFECT. HYDROLOGICAL: The water cycle is also affected by deforestation. Trees extract groundwater through their roots and release it into the atmosphere.

When part of a forest is removed, the trees no longer transpire this water, resulting in a much drier climate. Deforestation reduces the content of water in the soil and groundwater as well as atmospheric moisture. The dry soil leads to lower water intake for the trees to extract BIODIVERSITY: Deforestation on a human scale results in decline in biodiversity, and on a natural global scale is known to cause the extinction of many species. The removal or destruction of areas of forest cover has resulted in a degraded environment with reduced biodiversity. Forests support biodiversity, providing habitat for wildlife

THE FOLLOWING METHODS CAN REDUCE DEFORESTATION: 1. Reducing emissions 2. Farming 3. Monitoring deforestation 4. Forest management Conclusion: If major steps towards afforestation are not taken, then even the great adaptability of human beings may not be enough to cope up with the harsh climate of the future. Deforestation does have solutions. It’s just that the people must step forward. The safe keeping of our precious planet lies with each and every member of its human population. We are the ones accountable for our actions even though it is ourselves we are accountable too.

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