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Deforestation

At a deforestation rate of roughly 2% each year [80,000 square miles a year, over an acre per second], the forest cover on Earth will be reduced to 10% its original coverage soon after the turn of the century, to a tiny remnant by 2050.
Forests play a pivotal role in the stabilisation of the Earth’s climate. The loss of forests, particularly tropical rain forests, changes local weather patterns which in turn affects global climate. If not rectified, these climatic changes will result in the extinction of countless species as well as endangering our own. Deforestation will reek untold havoc on the global community in the immediate future and its influence over weather patterns might result in our ultimate destruction.
Each year, 40 to 50 million acres of forest are cleared away by the very species that has come to depend upon it for its very survival. Deforestation has been the result of natural phenomena such as volcanic eruptions and forest fires triggered by the dry season, but it is man who has been the most destructive force behind deforestation. In our brief period on the earth, man has already destroyed up to two thirds of the Earth’s land surface. The hardest hit areas have primarily been those third world nations near the African and South American rainforests.
Immediate action is necessary for the survival of the world’s forests. A tree that has taken over two hundred years to grow can now be chopped down by a chainsaw in a matter of minutes. As the human race has now exceeded the six billion mark, the exploitation of this valuable resource has increased dramatically. Nations around the world have cleared away millions of acres of forests for the sake of timber, paper products, mining, and for grazing land for raising cattle.
Efforts to counteract the effects of seemingly endless consumption such as recycling and replanting have been implemented, however these programs have done very little to stem the tide against …

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