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Deforestation Issues

The deforestation going on in the world at present, creates a similar amount of carbon dioxide emissions as all the world transport.

Carbon Counter:"In the next 24 hours, deforestation will release as much carbon dioxide as would be produced by aircraft carrying 8 million people from london to New York" Global Canopy Programme", Oxford UK

Deforestation is the process of changing land use from forests to a non-forest use. Western Europe has already lost over 99% of its primary forest. Today, deforestation programmes focus on the major rainforests of the tropics. Current tropical tree planting programmes are not keeping pace with this rate of deforestation. Countries in these areas are often under-developed and striving for economic improvement. Sales of timber and the use of land for crops provide monetary benefits.

Forests cover around a quarter to a third of the total land surface of the Earth. Climate models have demonstrated a clear link between deforestation and climate change. Forests are the most efficient ecosystem on earth for sucking carbon from the atmosphere and storing it underground - where it is most wanted. Trees absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere for photosynthesis, and therefore help to regulate the natural greenhouse effect. Deforestation takes away a potential sink for the carbon dioxide mankind is pumping into the atmosphere and is the No. 2 cause of greenhouse gas emissions after the burning of fossil fuels. In addition, forests removed by slash and burn techniques return to the atmosphere carbon 'locked up' in the timber.


Forests are highly sensitive to climate change and up to one third of currently forested areas could be affected by climate change in some way, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change

Warmer temperatures and changing rainfall patterns may create the conditions for increased forest fires. As global temperatures rise, tree species may not be able to shift their range fast enough to survive.

tropical forest

Deforest Info:
link to all issues Rainforest Portal

Oil and gas operations are a major contributor to rainforest destruction in areas as fragile and diverse as the western Amazon basin, Papua New Guinea, Burma, and Nigeria. Myriad factors contribute to petroleum projects' devastation of forest ecosystems.

Stats - loss of both rainforest and temperature forest globally="size of New Zealand per year" or "two football pitches a minute.."

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