Forests are very important to the environment because they use carbon dioxide (CO2) and produce oxygen. They also provide shelter and food for many different types of plants and animals. Today with the global warming is on the rise people are convinced the importance of forest cover for the existence of mankind. It is feared that the loss of rain forests will increase CO2 levels in the atmosphere and result in unsuitable place for people and animals. On a more local level, the clearing of rain forest land diminishes the amount of evaporation. As a result, the rainfall decreases and the ground dry out, reducing its ability to support vegetation. Loss of rain forests also reduces the absorption of solar energy. Sunlight reflects off the barren ground instead of being absorbed by trees. This would tend to cause earth cooling, an opposite result from the carbon dioxide increase.
But researchers from the FAO, which releases an annual survey of the world’s forests, found that enormous tracts are still disappearing from the developing world. According to the reports the deforestation is continues to be an unmanageable task for the countries that are having under developed economies and conflicts.
European countries have the most satisfying records with regards to sustainable forest management in the past and their forest cover has been increased. In the United States and Canada, meanwhile, forest cover is considered stable. The report’s authors found that improved legislation and conservation practices within the industrial world had led to the net loss of forests decreasing over the last decade from 22 million acres to 17 million acres.
Most of the tropical rain forests located in tropical warm countries, close to the equator. One-third of the world’s total is in the Amazon basin of Brazil. The fragile Eco-system of rain forest is largely depend on the high humidity and frequent rain. Rain forests covered about 30 percent of the earth’s land surface in 1950; the “greenbelt” is now at 7 percent and still declining.
Nobody knows exactly how much of the world’s rainforests have already been destroyed and continue to be razed each year. Data is often imprecise and subject to differing interpretations. However, it is obvious that the area of tropical rainforest is diminishing and the rate of tropical rainforest destruction is escalating worldwide, despite increased environmental activism and awareness. A 1992 study by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) placed the global rate of tropical deforestation at 17 million ha. Per year. A study by the World Resources Institute (WRI) suggests that the figure could be as high as 20.4 million ha. per year.
The trees are being cleared for timber, underground minerals, and farms. In the process, the great diversity of plants and animals in the rain forests is destroyed. Naturalists believe that reducing forest cover is the main reason for the current environmental problem facing in the world, if the trend of deforestation continues; it would create much more dangerous effect on the environment Clearly, the ultimate results are uncertain at this time.
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- Using the forest in sustainable manner
- Environmental issues in Sri Lanka
- Importance of rain forest for the survival of mankind
- Important facts about rain forests