Deforestation is a major international problem, which plagues countries all over the world. This conflict has major negative consequences on earth and its climate, atmosphere, and threatens people’s cultures and physical survival. 40% of the world’s land area is forests.
15% of the world’s forests have been cleared out. During the 20th century, the rate of forests being cleared is accelerating greatly and this problem will not go away. The effects are too great and actions must be taken because of the importance of forests around the world. Deforestation is also being effected by another process called desertification.
As the deserts expand, it robs area away from forests. Another problem which, contributes to deforestation is forest fires that aren’t being contained. 70% of plants and animals homeland are in forests. More than 200 species per hectare live in the forests. Besides the forests being homelands to many, forests have an immense amount of effect on temperature and humidifies the atmosphere. Forests are responsible for absorbing atmospheric carbon and refilling our air we breathe with oxygen.
Forests supply humans with a large percentage of water and are used as a tool for water irrigation. Forests also prevent natural disaster such as floods. The soil absorbs the rainfall and gradually lets out water into streams and supplies rivers. Trees in the forests also serve as a purpose.
Trees act as windbreaks, reducing the effect of eroding winds. Five hundred million people live somewhat near forests and depend on it for certain products. Forests provide us with a wide range of wood assorted products that we use in daily life such as lumber, panels, poles, and paper. Tropical forests supply twenty five percent of this production.
The numbers are endless and this wood related production has a huge aftereffect to the forests. Fuelwood and charcoal also make a huge part in damaging the forests. Other products that are made through forests are fibers, resins, latexes, fruits, and traditional medicines. Tropical forests are responsible for economically improving and breeding certain plants. Forests have been known to improve corn crops and increase speed of growth.
Forests are also the site of sources used to fight cancer, AIDS, some forms of leukemia, prostate disorders, and some other serious diseases. All of these facts listed above express the importance of forests and the advantages it brings to the world. There are many causes for deforestation, which are responsible for destroying the atmosphere. Groups, which are responsible for causing deforestation, are small farmers, ranchers, loggers, and corrupt politicians.
One cause is since the ozone layer is depleting, there are rapid changes in the atmosphere causing forests to decrease. The atmosphere also changes due to the increase of people living around forests. Forests lie mostly in third world countries where overpopulation is a tremendous problem. The population increases by 1,000 million people every decade.
These poor countries are forced to clear land to find shelter for its civilians. As the population increases, the usage of products that are derived from forests increases with the population. Financial debts are indirectly causing deforestation. Due to the countries in financial turmoil, they are also pressured into clearing the forests and sell the lumber to manufacturers. Wood pulp and paper are important commodities, which lie in forests.
This industry has grown over the years despite organizations attempting to prevent the usage of forests for these products. Charcoal and fuelwood are products that supply the world. These products have been accounted for utilizing 80% of wood that has been found in forests. Forests are being cut down to explore for petroleum and coal. Greed is causing these countries to give in to large companies. Another part of this problem is hunger in these third world countries.
Governments are forced to clear the forests to form cattle ranches. The need for food causes the forests to disintegrate by the minute. The beef market has grown and countries in Central America are responsible for 20% of the beef market that is exported to Europe and Asia Cattle graze on flat lands, which were once forests. When herds increase and can’t be supported on the limited grazing lands, the source for more land are tropical forests. Forests are .