Deforestation is the clearing of natural forests by logging or burning of trees and plants in a forested area. As a result of deforestation, presently about one half of the forests that once covered the Earth have been destroyed. It occurs for many different reasons, and it has several negative implications on the atmosphere and the quality of the land in and surrounding the forest
The main causes of deforestation is clearing forests for agricultural reasons and using forest products of economic reasons.
Because deforestation is so extensive, it has made several significant impacts on the environment- * Carbon dioxide in the atmosphere
Deforestation is cited as a cause of global warming. Because trees and plants remove carbon dioxide and emit oxygen into the atmosphere, the reduction of forests contributes to about 12% of anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions * Changing the water cycle * An increase in soil erosion
The removal of trees causes higher rates of erosion, increasing risks of landslides, which is a direct threat to many people living close to deforested areas * Decrease in biodiversity
As forests get destroyed, so does the habitat for millions of animals. It is estimated that 80% of the world’s known biodiversity lives in the rainforests, and the destruction of these rainforests is accelerating extinction at an alarming rate
Controlling Deforestation * Organizations like the United Nations and the World Bank have started to create programs like Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD) that works especially with developing countries to use subsidies or other incentives to encourage citizens to use the forest in a more sustainable way. * In the areas where "slash-and-burn" is practiced, switching to "slash-and-char" would prevent the rapid deforestation and subsequent degradation of soils. The biochar thus created, given back to the soil, is not only a durable carbon sequestration method, but it also is an extremely beneficial amendment to the soil. * Reforestation-Plant trees and begin doing this in your yard. Trees give off oxygen that is essential for human existence and they, in turn, capture the carbon dioxide that humans and animals exhale. Trees also help in containing water in its roots. With this simple act, you are able to prevent soil erosion, which is the root cause of landslides * Use recycled items such as books or pad paper, toilet paper, even shopping bags. If you can, do not waste any of these products so that no new raw material would be required to replace them. * Cut down only the mature trees. Do not kill baby trees. And for every tree that is lost, plant another one as a replacement. * Join environmental awareness groups that would help you be an advocate of reforestation. In Washington, specifically in the Washington Middle School, there was a group of students that established a service-learning project. In their project, they asked a penny from each person. They explained that this money would help in buying acres of the rainforest in Amazon. Once this pushes through, no deforestation could take place in that purchased area. * There is a report that in Indonesia and Malaysia, more and more trees are cut down to produce palm oil. This massive destruction in the forests of both countries resulted into the loss of habitat for the native orangutans. With the loss of more trees, more animals become homeless. You can't help prevent this altogether but you can limit your consumption of products that contain palm oil such as breads, chocolates, and even some cosmetics such as shampoo, soap or toothpaste. As to your food consumption, you can begin a diet of roasted or boiled foods instead of frying them. * Instead of using…