Rainforests need protection!

December 7, 2009
“66,000 square miles of rainforest is estimated to disappear every year, due to deforestation. At this rate the entire earths rainforests will be demolished in 20 years. Currently the forests cover less than half of the size since rainforests started being deforested.” (http://www.pacificislandtravel.com/nature_gallery/deforestation.html) Deforestation in these tropical forests is a way for other countries to receive high levels of income unethically. People indigenous to the forests suffer by being killed or kicked out, endangered species and rare plants are becoming extinct, and the earths atmosphere and surroundings are being polluted.

To begin, around 35 million people live in or around just the forests in Congo. (http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2007/mar/19/congosdeforestationfuelling) Theres an estimated 50 million tribal people living inside the forests as well.(wellhttp://www.srl.caltech.edu/personnel/krubal/rainforest/Edit560s6/www/people.html) These forests contain food, materials, and shelter for these natives. While other countries continue to bulldoze and benefit from the massive timber production, natives and others are suffering while there homes are being torn apart. This is completely wrong and selfish of the countries benefiting.

Another devastating problem is the damage deforestation is doing to the earths natural ability to clean the atmosphere. While the trees are supposed to be converting carbon dioxide to oxygen, some scientists believe weather patterns are being altered which makes up to 25% of the carbon dioxide to pollute the air. Another problem is because of the lack of plants to hold up the soil, there is no support to keep it on the hills. So now, it is sliding into the river filling it with silt harming the fish. The soil filling the river only holds in a fraction of the water it used to resulting in floods and drought instead of a steady water supply. (http://www.pacificislandtravel.com/nature_gallery/deforestation.html)

Most likely the biggest problem with deforestation is the damage it is doing to the environment, its slowly altering its whole ecosystem. About 4 square miles contains more than 700 animal species, 1,500 plant and tree species, and thousands of insect species. (http://www.pacificislandtravel.com/nature_gallery/deforestation.html) 66,000 square miles a year divided by 365 days equals 180.8 square miles being deforested a day! We are losing 50 to 100 animal and plant species each day. (http://www.umich.edu/~gs265/society/deforestation.htm) Along with that, more species are being affected with the loss of others, corrupting the whole ecosystem. This could eventually lead to a mass extinction of endangered species.

What is the answer? Well, there is no easy answer to solve the mess we have made, but for more advanced and developed countries we need to encourage recycling more than ever along with encouraging other countries to stop paying for timber and for everyone to try to stop deforesting. Although tropical rainforests only cover about six percent of earths land, they do contain between 70 to 90 percent of all the worlds species! (http://www.umich.edu/~gs265/society/deforestation.htm) We are killing people who claimed the land first but can’t defend themselves, we are ruining our atmosphere and polluting the river’s stable system, and most importantly we are destroying the diversity of the biological life in our surroundings. Deforestation can be stopped but the world has to work together to achieve it!

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