Sustainable Worlds SUS110
Assignment: Sustainable Biome Economics Deciduous Forests
Traditional logging and agriculture expansion has led to the devastation of the deciduous forests. The United States has lost over 90% of the original forests and in Europe only 1% remains. The wood and paper products that we have come to love and can’t live without coupled with lax regulation and greed have caused logging to become a problem for wildlife, humans and the planet.
Soil erosion and degradation; greenhouse gas emissions; toxins from nitrogen run-off into fresh water supplies: These are just a few problems that were created from the destruction of forests that are serious issues demanding change through using sustainable forestry.
In the 1990’s, New Yorkers had to boil drinking water because of microbial contamination caused by the logging industry. The city officials made a deal with private landowners to take better care of the area to protect the watershed, achieving cleaner water for the city. Watershed altering timber practices were part of the agreement, along with improved dairy farms and septic systems.
The city of New York funded more than five hundred forest-management plans covering 94,000 acres, bought and retired the development rights to forest land, and helped loggers harvest less disruptively. The program also backs woodworking businesses on the theory that a strong forest economy will prevent the sub-division of wooded land for residential development.
Another solution implemented is the “third-party certification” program, in which a trusted entity separate from buyer and timber industry vouches for the wood. The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is an