Iqra Ateeq, Green Blogger.
"The answer is simple. If we lose the world's forests, we lose the fight against climate change. Rainforests are our Earth's greatest utility - our planet's lungs, thermostat and air-conditioning system." ~ Michael Somare.
At this time, if you want to see the world’s climate changing, then fly over a tropical country. Thirty years ago, a wide belt of rainforest circled the earth, covering much of Latin America, south-east Asia and Africa. Today, it is being rapidly replaced by great swathes of palm oil trees and rubber plantations, land cleared for cattle grazing, dams and logging, soya farming, expanding cities.At current rates of deforestation, they will vanish in all in a century. Stopping climate change will remain an illusory goal unless poor nations are helped to preserve them.
As John Vidal said:
We are destroying rainforests so quickly they may be gone in 100 year”
Nothing less than the physical transformation of the Earth is taking place because People have been deforesting the tropics for years for timber and farming, every year about – an area the size of England and Wales – is down. In just 40 years, possibly, the equivalent of Europe, has gone. Half the world’s rainforests have been razed in a century, and the latest satellite analysis shows that in the last 15 years new hotspots have emerged from Cambodia to Liberia. At current rates, they will vanish altogether.
The consensus of the world’s atmospheric scientists is that about 12% of all man-made climate emissions – nearly as much as the world’s 1.2bn cars and lorries – now comes from deforestation, mostly in tropical areas. Conserving forests is critical; the carbon locked up in Democratic Republic of the Congo’s 150m hectares of forests are nearly three times the world’s global annual emissions.
According to recent reports of Brazil’s new president’s plans to open up the Amazon -world’s largest rain forest to agriculture and mining have the world worried about the effects of deforestation on global climate change.
The second largest rainforest in the world - in Central Africa’s Congo Basin is disappearing at an alarming rate, despite local laws against deforestation. the University of California stated China and the United States as the primary culprits. China imports wood more than doubled from the Congo Basin between 2001 and 2015, and most of the cheap furniture it exported was headed for the United States.
The entire planet is dependent on these two major rainforests for sinking carbon dioxide and keeping global warming from spiraling out of control. And as the forests come down, the people who live in or around them and depend on them become impoverished. As fast as the trees go, the chance of slowing or reversing climate change becomes slimmer. Tropical deforestation causes carbon dioxide, the main greenhouse gas, to linger in the atmosphere and trap solar radiation. This raises temperatures and leads to climate change.Without the forests, people migrate to cities, or move to richer countries in search of work. The world’s rainforests not only provide food, energy security, incomes and medicinal plants for 300 million people, but are home to the richest wildlife in the world. Rainforests are found all over the world — in West and Central Africa, South and Central America, Indonesia, Southeast Asia and Australia -on every continent except Antarctica. They are vitally important, producing most of the oxygen we breathe and providing habitat for half of the planet's flora and fauna. It is home to plants and animals. According to The Nature Conservancy, a 4-square-mile (2,560 acres) area of rainforest contains as many as 1,500 flowering plants, 750 species of trees, 400 species of birds and 150 species of butterflies. The Amazon rainforest alone contains around 10 percent of the world's known species.
Our such great dependency on rainforest shows that the Fate of Rainforests is in our hands.Its the time to turn in because rainforests are the only answer to every question.
About the Author: Iqra Ateeq is a student of environment at GCWUS. She is very enthusiastic about writing and raising voice for environment and sustainable development.