By Hinnan Khalid1,2, Muhammad Zia-ur-Rehman1, Muhammad Usman Khalid3
Today, the life is at the verge of the death. Polluted air, contaminated water, high temperature and unavailability of proper food, these are the major threats to the survival of the life on this planet Earth. We feel proud that today, we have sky touching and well furnished hospital buildings but how we forget that these hospitals are full of countless patients having infinite diseases. We proudly announce that we are covering the steps of success staircase but here, wait for a minute and think for a while that “are we really becoming successful?”. To clear the land, cut down the trees, convert the villages into big cities and raise the numerous buildings and industries, if we are trying to assume these anthropogenic flaws as a label of success then, with the very sorry, I would like to highlight the reality that is shrieking loud against it. Before cutting a single tree, we should know its worth. While passing through a park of Portland, I remained astonished that how beautifully those people are trying to realize the priceless worth of trees. The following picture is the clear indication of the importance of trees into our lives.
Now, just try to memorize the daily based benefits that trees are providing us and playing an important role for providing direct and indirect solutions, for almost every problem. One of the most alarming concerns of present era is “environmental pollution”. But I can proudly declare that latest research has proved “one tree is saving one life every year” by removing the environmental pollutants from air and reducing disease attack. Similarly, it is also well documented that death rate has increased many folds due to heart attacks in the big cities due to absence of trees.
Moreover, they are the true “lungs of planet” due to the oxygen supply to all of the living beings. Another, appreciable fact about trees is that, they act as the natural filters for water. Proper forests and tree plantation in city can reduce not only the extra cost for drinking water filtration and treatment plants but also diminish the risks for water borne diseases.
Similarly, carbon dioxide, being the biggest culprit of changing our climate in dangerous way, is absorbed by the trees. According to a report, a single tree can absorb as much as 48 pounds of carbon dioxide per year, and can sequester one ton of carbon dioxide by the time it reaches 40 years old.
Therefore, by this phenomenon trees act as the buffers for this global warming and bestow us with cool and pure air for breathing. Moreover, due to aesthetic worth of trees and greenery reduce the crime rate by increasing the calming effect, courage and bolstering community trust.
Another valuable fact about trees existence is the high market price for homes and shops near green landscape. It is well documented that consumers are willing to pay 7% and 13% more price for greenery containing houses and shops, respectively. It has also been noted that trees reduce the patient’s sickness up to many folds. Even a little bit walk in some park can give us relief from severe headache and hyper-tension.
A research study depicted that hospital patient who can see trees out their windows are hospitalized 8% fewer days than their counterparts. Therefore, it is sure fact now that if we have to save our environment, our lives and have to secure the better future for our children, we should protect already existing trees and need to plant more and more trees. Don’t forget “better environment is the surety of better tomorrow”.
The authors are from 1Institute of Soil and Environmental Sciences, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, Pakistan, 2 Punjab Agriculture Department, Shahkot, Pakistan, and 3Department of fisheries and aquaculture,University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences, Lahore, Pakistan