You are on page 1of 7

Juneau 1

Paxton Juneau

Dr. Will Simkins

English Composition 1120

March 27, 2017

The Deforestation Problem/ Solution

After nearly a century of destruction, tropical rain forests in Africa and South America

have now reached a critical point at which they could either disappear altogether or slowly

recover (Hunter 1). The previous quote identifies the extremely important fact that our world is

on the brink of losing one of its biggest resources since the beginning of its existence, trees.

Phillip Hunters article reinforces the fact that we have reached a critical time in our planets

existence where if we do not begin making moves towards sustaining our forests, we will face

major consequences that will be much harder to adjust to than if we begin implementing

innovative solutions today. For as long as there has been life on this earth there has been vast

acres of forest to support that life. Trees were amongst the first living things on our planet and

have played a vital role in maintaining the balance between ecosystems all over the world for

centuries. Although they are one of our most valuable resources, we lose enough of our forests

to deforestation every year to cover the land area of Greece. The worlds human population is

growing faster every day which means the space which the population takes up is growing with

it. In recent years, due to this growth, cities are beginning to overflow into suburbs. The land that

used to be lush rainforests full of nature, wildlife, and clean habitat is slowly disappearing so that

human beings can expand and fuel their cities, farmland, agricultural development, and countless

lumber industries. The recent rise of global deforestation is threatening the natural balance of all

living things and is a great contributor to the rise in climate change. Without immediate action,

these consequences will become permanent.


Juneau 2

Humans have justified the clearing of forests with little regard to the environment since

the day people began using wood as a building material. Ignoring the knowledge that trees

perform dozens of services for any ecosystem that has or ever will exist, will only intensify the

rate of their disappearance. After researching the topic it is evident that finding a way to slow the

rising rate of deforestation is vital to curing the climate change problem that is effecting every

country in the world When a forest is cleared, two sets of actions are set into play, the immediate

consequences and the delayed consequences. In the immediate category, we have soil

degradation, disruption of water cycles, habitat loss, and an ever-increasing threat to biodiversity.

In the delayed category of consequences, we have ozone layer change, climate change, and loss

of regenerative land. While all those consequences are real and dangerous, the biggest threats

among those previously stated are climate change, habitat loss, and the decrease of biodiversity

and regenerative land. Those four things are what I believe will continue to be a problem

worldwide. All things considered there are still people out there who dont think of deforestation

as a pressing issue in our world currently.

Granted since the last peak of deforestation in South America during 2004 there has been

a huge decline in deforestation but it is back on the rise and potentially poses devastating

consequences. >>> insert article/ analyzation of article about this change in rate of

deforestation!!!.

One article written by a Daily Mail reporter says: In countries from Finland to Malaysia,

the thickening has taken place so quickly that it has reversed the carbon losses caused by

deforestation between 1990 and 2010. (Daily Mail Online). This thickening is mainly in

reference to Eurasia forests and most of the thickening due to some Chinese forest growth

farming implemented but that is not going to necessarily create a fully balanced ecosystem.
Juneau 3

There is a huge lack of biodiversity which means they typically dont plant more than a few

species of trees at the most. This article goes on to state facts about minor improvements in the

density of some Easter European and North American forests and makes claims that over two

thirds of the worlds forests are getting thicker. If these facts are legitimate I would likely have to

compromise and say that yes maybe there are some areas of the world that are showing forest

regrowth but that does not mean that deforestation is still a large problem because we need our

forests to survive in a balanced ecosystem. A big hole in the argument this article makes against

the idea that deforestation is still growing and could be negatively affecting us is that this article

doesnt address how bad deforestation is in areas other than Eurasia and North America.

An article on how Amazonian land-use has negative side effects sheds light on what

exactly we are dealing with as far as extent of the problem of deforestation goes.

For half a century, the process of economic integration of the Amazon has been based on

intensive use of renewable and nonrenewable natural resources, which has brought

significant basin-wide environmental alterations. The rural development in the Amazonia

pushed the agricultural frontier swiftly, resulting in widespread land-cover change, but

agriculture in the Amazon has been of low productivity and unsustainable. The loss of

biodiversity and continued deforestation will lead to high risks of irreversible change of

its tropical forests.

The region has warmed about 1 C over the last 60 y, and total deforestation is

reaching 20% of the forested area (Noble et al. 1).

A shift in the forestry of the Amazon has been a problem ever since countries have

started using it for agricultural purpose thereby changing the naturally re-growing vegetation and

land cover. This results in a loss of biodiversity of the region which is the main factor causing
Juneau 4

climate change. The article also explains that if the global temperature rises 4 degrees Celsius

there would be irreversible effects on forests. Deforestation in the amazon is on a rise and needs

to be managed better so the human population will thrive and survive by having the necessary

resources without it destroying our planet. I believe such a scenario where the people who

depend on this is possible therefore they should be able to have their cake and eat it too. If

control of clearing in those regions can be increased or fixed so that it benefits the climate while

still allowing industries or human needs in general to be met then we will see progress with this

genuine problem.

I propose that industries which extract lumber or other resources from forests dont clear

them to the point where the forests become nonrenewable (Noble, et al. 1). The article written

by Noble discusses how all the agriculture or lumber industries that cultivate from the tropical

rainforests most of the time do so in a way that leaves the land they used unable to return to its

original form of natural growth. This is something I believe people could make an effort to find a

practical easy solution to.

Solutions to the ever-growing issue of forest clearing have been implemented and show

satisfactory results. There are steps being taken in some areas of the world to slow the rate of

deforestation. I have discovered many solutions to the worlds impending deforestation problem.

The article by Hunter includes ongoing research into implemented solutions to the struggle of

slowing deforestation;

Costa Rica pioneered the idea of payments for environmental services in 1996 through

various sourcesincluding tax on fuel for transportation and waterto create a fund that

compensates farmers for leaving trees on their land. Currently the country's PES
Juneau 5

(Payment for Environmental Services) pays around US$30 million a year and has helped

to increase the cover of its rain forests during recent years. (Hunter 1)

What this article is providing is very key when thinking of new efficient ways to

convince tree using industries to stop clearing so many areas of rainforests at one time. This type

of reward system could be emplaced in all countries that have a deforestation problem and I

firmly believe would be effective in slowing down the biodiversity damage and permanent land

clearing. Solutions such as tree farming which is widely used in the U.S. and has proven to be

effective in recreating a more stable ecosystem for wildlife preserves. Tree farming is not a type

of agriculture and doesnt include orange or apple tree type of tree farming. It refers to when you

create rows and columns of trees where previous vegetation grew out of control or was cleared.

Another solution that I will discuss further as my research continues is manipulating the biomass

of forests. Which means changing where some plants or trees are to balance the carbon output of

forests. If corporations and countries implement these proposed solutions then deforestation can

be a controlled problem.

Faced with this combined advocacy, the Brazilian Ministry of Environment has just

announced ground-breaking new plans for transparency on forestry activities. Crucially, what

this means is a widening of the parameters of the forests under sustainable management. It could

even lead to the total elimination of illegal logging (Fritalli 1). The importance of this new idea

for how to recover from the decreasing rainforest is quite large. If more countries would consider

implementing this idea or a similar solution it would make for a quicker rate forest rejuvenation.

It most likely will partially fix the issue of sustaining renewable land. Also, if this policy can

really stop illegal logging it would lead to enormous strides in the direction of total recovery.
Juneau 6

One key component of my argument is the solutions I plan to propose that could help

with the problem of clearing undeveloped land and rainforests. I found one video showing results

of regulations that were set for deforestation and clearing in Bolivia. Environmentalists Antonio

Rodriguez warns that Bolivia faces a potential environmental disaster if deforestation is not

checked. But the government continues to insist that adequate conservation measures are in place

that will prevent this from happening.

This video provides another small sample of where attempts to manage deforestation are

created but will not necessarily be successfully enforced. This is the kind of disregard for

environmental protection laws that needs to be cracked down on. After seeing this video I

concluded that I need to consider more articles about how one of the bigger threats of

deforestation is the disregard many corporations have for the natural resources in South America.

These companies that outsource to rainforest regions of Africa or South America are simply

ignorant of the serious deforestation situation planet earth is confronted with still.

Both pros and cons arise when discussing the subject of deforestation and what it does

for the human population. Although clearing for urban development creates jobs and homes, it

destroys resources that can be used worldwide for the better. One of the main reasons the urban

development is at such an incline is because of the population. The population of earth never

ceases to increase, therefore there is always going to be need for expansion. But as you can tell

from the examples in this paper there are ways around destroying forests for their resources at

such a high rate.


Juneau 7

Works Cited

BOLIVIA: DEFORESTATION CONTINUES DESPITE NEW REGULATIONS. Associated

Press, 1999. Associated Press Video Collection. EBSCOhost, search.ebscohost.com.

"Forget Deforestation: The World's Woodland Is Getting Denser and Change Could Help

Combat Climate Change." Daily Mail Online. Associated Newspapers, 06 June 2011.

Web. 17 Apr. 2017.

Fritalli, Isaballe W. "Deforestation in the Amazon Is up Again. But This Time Big Business Can

Help." World Economic Forum. World Economic Forum, 15 Mar. 2017. Web

Hunter, Phillip. "Restoring Tropical Rain Forests." EMBO Reports. EMBO Press, 10 Mar. 2017.

Web. 17 Apr. 2017.

Nobre, Carlos A., Gilvan Sampaoio, Laura Borma, Juan Carlos Castilla-Rubio, Jose Silva,

Manoel Cardoso. "Land-Use and Climate Change Risks in the Amazon and the Need of a

Novel Sustainable Development Paradigm." Proceedings of the National Academy of

Sciences of the United States of America, vol. 113, no. 39, 27 Sept. 2016, pp. 10759-

10768. EBSCOhost.