Guardians of climate

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TREES FIRST appeared on earth more than 380 million years ago. They have remarkably changed the face of continents. They have brought forth fertile lands from parched rocks. A tree is stationary but it finds the food from where it is planted. They require water, light, energy and carbon di oxide from the air to live and grow. Trees draw their raw materials from environment and turn them into leaves, branches and trunk. At the same time trees gives off abundance of the substance that allows varieties of life forms to proliferate i.e. oxygen.

The planets forests are habitats of more than half of its species. Food, remedies and scientific research mainly depends on biodiversity. Humans have earned their livelihood from forests for long ago thus transforming and destroying them. Our model has been destroyed for constant growth. Since1950, the world population has risen nearly by 3/4th. We are constantly cutting trees down by million to plant soybean. Forests have been replaced by “Eucalyptus” which is more profitable for the paper industry and by oil palms which are more profitable for agri food business. Deforestation is a matter of survival, 2 billion people worldwide cut down forests to make charcoal and support their families through slash and burn of trees, agriculture destabilizing the natural equilibrium of forests and biodiversity.

Over the past 60 years, we have inflicted more rapid degradation on planet than all of human history. When forests are cleared its not just animals whose survival is challenged; is the essential being destroyed to produce superfluous. It doesnt have to be that way; woodlands still make up 1/3rd of earth`s total land area and men, women across the globe are fighting to protect it. Scientists, associations, villagers and governments are all sounding the alarms and proposing alternatives as other choices do exist. Through understanding, education, and information global authorities stress that forests can continue to provide livelihood opportunities only if people alter their mindsets.

Forests like sponges filter, store and digest pollutants. They absorb water during flood. Plant life palms water, air, sunlight, and earth. It forms the cornerstone of whole living ecology we all depend on. Forests are the guardians of climate; they contain more carbon than that of stored in earths entire atmosphere.

Worldwide, 1.6 billion are directly dependent on forests for their livelihood and 7 billion people (almost all) rely on all the benefits. They produce food, water, the fresh air, and the remedies we require to maintain our health. Taking a close look at forests reveal that mankind and forests are closely connected.

The shrinking forests are matter of serious concern. They are regulators of greenhouse gases (GHG) and a shield to protect ozone layer from depletion. There is a dire need to increase the forest area not only in size but also in density so to strap the impending climate change challenges that have already rung the alarm bells for policy makers, environmental scientists, and other stakeholders. This way we can efficiently cash in maximum benefits of forests. The increase in the forest area, adaptation of green technologies, and opting the alternatives instead of stalking forests are the protocols that must be ensured to vanguard the environmental challenges to give a safer planet to future generations. The rapid deforestation has to be controlled through legislative measures and policy knobs.

Man has always been dependent on forests to fulfill its various needs. The hunting of forests has badly impacted on environment and needs consolation from the planet mates. Let us live in planet like brotherhood, standing tall like coast redwood.

The author is associated with Technology Times as Editorial Assistant. He can be reached at ahsan@technologty


Published in: Volume 06 Issue 25

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