In just 10,000 years or so, we have managed to destroy over fifty percent of the world’s forests, with most of this loss occurring in the last fifty years along with a massive rise in the human population. This incredible loss rate has caused a significant negative impact in many parts of the world, and we are only just beginning. This is why experts from websites like BestChainsaw.Reviews always remind people to be responsible in cutting down trees be it on their own property or in the industrial level.
In this article, we’ll look at five of the most devastating effects of deforestation.
1. Soil Erosion
Soils (as well as their nutrients) are exposed to the sun. Soil moisture evaporates and nutrients dry up, subsequently affecting the beneficial bacteria that help break down organic matter. In the long run, rain carries away the soil surfaces and causes erosion. The damage: most of the soils’ potential washes away with the rain in the process.
2. Water Cycle
When we destroy forests, we interfere with the water table, water bodies, and the atmosphere in general. The roots of the trees are used to absorb and preserve water. Most of the water that circulates rain forests’ ecosystem is retained in the plants, with some of the moisture being transpired into the atmosphere. Once this process is interfered with, water bodies and the atmosphere begin to dry out. This in turn compromises the watershed potential, causing less water to run through the rivers. The result: streams and smaller lakes that rely on the larger water bodies eventually dry up.
3. Climate Change
Plants use carbon dioxide from the air to produce food (carbs, proteins, and fats that build up trees) and in return, they give us oxygen. When the forests are destroyed, more carbon dioxide is retained in the atmosphere. What’s more, the dead vegetation will continue releasing more carbon dioxide as they decompose. This will subsequently have a negative impact on the climate of that area. Hot climates may get a lot cooler and cooler places may get a lot hotter.
4. Loss of Biodiversity
Through deforestation, we have lost many wonderful species of animals and plants, and many others are still endangered. In fact, more than eighty percent of the world’s species live in the Tropical Rainforest.
Approximately 50-100 of these species are lost every day due to the destruction of their habitats, which is a terrible tragedy.
5. Economic Impact
Damage to rivers, marine life, and forests through deforestation could significantly diminish the global GDP (Gross Domestic Product) by 7% by the year 2050. This is primarily because currently, most countries rely on converting their forests into agriculture, which naturally lead to loss of long-term biological productivity.
It is important to note that apart from harming our environment, deforestation is not an efficient source of energy – at least from the economic side of view. To counter deforestation, we simply need to plant more trees. Although a massive replanting campaign may not help alleviate all the problems associated with deforestation, it would solve most of them. Reforestation would facilitate:
- Rebuilding wildlife habitats
- Reducing the accumulation of CO2 in the atmosphere
- Restoring the ecosystem services offered by forests, such as wildlife habitats, water recycling, and most importantly, carbon storage.