Do you want to know different facts about deforestation and its consequences? If yes, then go through this article to learn more about them.

Facts About Deforestation

Deforestation refers to the clearing and cutting of forests due to several human activities. Since ancient times, man has been cutting down trees make land available for livestock, agriculture, industry, dams, allied human activities and to accommodate growing population. All these activities have given rise to different environmental issues. Starting from global warming and climate change to the loss of habitats of different species of animals, the impacts of deforestation are far reaching indeed. Deforestation not only triggers different environmental problems, but has a huge social impact as well. Economic uncertainty and fluctuation throughout the world is one of the major impacts that deforestation has on society. Deforestation has also given rise to conflicts and struggles over land and natural resources. If we do not take steps to check deforestation right away, the damage will be way too much for us humans to control. If you wish to learn more about the facts and consequences of deforestation, then read through the section that follows.  

Deforestation Facts
  • The most common causes of deforestation include population expansion, need of agricultural land to support the growing population, need for fuel and paper products, urban construction like dams, need for grazing space for livestock, slash and burn farming techniques, extraction of minerals and oil, and manmade or natural forest fires.
  • Deforestation has directly affected the biodiversity of the world. As forests have been cleared, many species that have failed to adapt to altered environments are now threatened with extinction.
  • Trees absorb water from the soil through their roots and release it into the atmosphere during transpiration. This released water then forms clouds and rains. However, as trees are cut down in an area, the climate of that area becomes dry with little or no rainfall.
  • The roots of the trees hold soil in place. As forests are cleared, soil erosion increases.  Surface runoffs are direct consequences of deforestation that may also lead to floods in places that receive heavy rainfall. The top fertile soil is washed away by the rain water due to this problem.
  • Deforestation also increases salinity in the soil.
  • Tree roots help to bind underlying rocks. Deforestation thus increases the risk of landslides and might threaten the lives of people inhabiting the area.
  • Not all deforestation is due to human activities. Deforestation can also occur due to natural factors like overgrazing that may restrict the growth of young plants. Wildfire is another natural cause of deforestation.
  • Countless trees are cut down every year for wood and paper products. Many logging operations are illegal in most countries. However, people continue to indulge in such acts for immediate economic benefits.
  • The Amazon rainforest which roughly covers an area of about 2,488,642 square miles has lost 15 percent of its forest cover since 1970 alone.
  • Brazil suffers the highest rate of deforestation every year.
  • Deforestation may result in habitat fragmentation which means the habitat of certain animals are disturbed and they are forced to enter habitats occupied by other animals. This can lead to several issues like lack of food and territorial conflicts among other issues.
  • Deforestation can also alter the microclimate of a place thus affecting endemic species which can only thrive in a particular habitat.

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