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Tropical Deforestation Essay

680 words - 3 pages

The Ecological Nature of the Problem
Tropical forests do not just possess a single ecosystem; these tropical forests are home to millions of unique ecosystems. Tropical forest provides is habitat to over half of the worlds plant and animal species. Tropical rainforest only cover approximately 7% of the Earth’s dry land surface, but contain so many critical plant and animal species (Rainforest Alliance; Environmental). Tropical forest are diminishing rapidly due to a variety of factors humans are causing; such as, clearing the natural land to make room for farms and pastures, to harvest the wood for construction and use for fuel, and to build roads and urban areas. Some deforestation is necessary for the growing population; however, with excessive deforestation it is resulting in devastating consequences, including, extinction of many plants and animals and global climate change (earthobservatory). However, with more than half of all tropical forest land already destroyed, and nearly, 32 million more acres of forest land is going to be destroyed by the end of 2014 as a result of forest deforestation (Rainforest Alliance). At the current rate of deforestation it will have lasting impacts on our Earth’s climate.

Climate Impacts
Nearly 30% of the rain that falls in tropical forest is water that the forest has already recycled into the atmosphere prior (earthobservatory). The tropical forest is a key component in the carbon cycle and produces its own reliable self-watering cycle by, the water from the ground and plants getting evaporated, condenses in the clouds, and then falling again on the forest. Tropical forest, take in carbon dioxide and produce oxygen for the environment. Some researchers suggest that with future tropical deforestation, it will disrupt rainfall patterns far beyond the forest.
An interesting fact is that scientist, estimate that in the Amazon alone, the tree contain more carbon than 10 years worth of human-produced greenhouse gases (earthobservatory). However, with tropical deforestation rates being so high, the carbon cycle becomes off balance because when trees are destroyed, the carbon stored in the wood returns back into the atmosphere. This enhances greenhouse effects...

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