As the world population reaches a crescendo, the need for wood in various forms has only increased. Unfortunately, the naturally occurring wood available in rainforests across the world is becoming a victim of our needs. As the world population reaches a crescendo, the deforestation of naturally occurring woodlands are falling prey to human greed. But more than ever before, rainforest deforestation is impacting world climate and becoming a huge concern for the future of the earth. Let's find out what deforestation is, why it occurs, and how it impacts the global climate.
What is deforestation?
When forests that have been created naturally are cut down or burnt by humans in order to use the wood for various purposes, the process is known as deforestation. Sometimes, this process occurs naturally as well. However, most of the times, this is the handiwork of man. Some of the biggest reserves of wood are the Amazon Rainforests in Brazil, the Congo Basin Forests in Africa, and the Indonesian Rainforest in South East Asia. Deforestation can even be caused by soil erosion or naturally occurring jungle fires.
Why does deforestation happen?
There are many reasons for rainforest deforestation. Some of the most common and well-known reasons for this include:
– Fuel: trees or the charcoal derived from them is used as fuel. Oftentimes, charcoal is sold in the market as an alternate means of fuel in many countries. Tree branches are also cut, dried, and used as fuel for cooking etc.
– Land use: For many years, human beings have been cutting down trees in order to clear land so that they can use it as pastures for their livestock. As the human population increases, so does the need to feed livestock. Unfortunately, more and more trees are cut to make way for greener pastures for feeding cows, goats, sheep etc.
– Settlements: As habitable land becomes dearer and dearer, people need cheaper land options for settling down. Rainforests present a wonderful opportunity and therefore, people cut down trees to make way for settlements. These trees are removed without proper care and complete apathy for reforestation.
How deforestation impacts global environment?
As the green cover gets destroyed, the fragile ecosystems get destroyed or become imbalanced. Rainforest deforestation also leads to damaged habitats, loss of biodiversity, imbalance in the microenvironment and aridity. Regions that are deforested get affected by soil erosion and soon than later turn in wastelands. It becomes very difficult for this land to be restored back to its former self. Over the years, these wastelands can even become deserts.
Deforestation also leads to extinction of rare trees, animals, insects, flowers and other naturally occurring things. An ongoing issue in many countries, deforestation must be stopped in order to combat their devastating effects on the global climatic conditions.
While there are many other reasons besides population growth for rainforest deforestation, we must remember that deforestation plays a significant role in shaping the global geography and climate and for this reason alone it must be curbed and combated.