Rainforests play a very important role in our world. The largest rainforest on our planet is the Amazon rainforest. It covers an area of 1.4 billion acres, which is more than half of remaining rainforests on our planet. Rainforests used to cover 14% of earth’s land surface while now they cover just 6%! Many experts are saying that if we continue deforestation like we are now, then we could lose all of our rainforests by the end of this century. This would affect climate change a lot. Forests and rainforests absorb large quantities of CO2, which is a harmful greenhouse gas mostly responsible for global warming and climate change. In the last 40 years Brazil, which makes up 60 % of the Amazon, lost more than 232, 000 sq miles of the rainforest.
The main cause for the Amazon’s deforestation is clearing forest area for cattle pasture. This has caused the loss of 70% of formerly forested land in the Amazon. Unfortunately, human population is constantly growing and we need more and more food. Brazil is known for cattle breeding and is their traditional business. They just need large areas of land for farming and the Amazon stands in the way of their chance to gain higher profits. It is sad to say that in many cases, the environment is less important than their economy. The end result of this is destroying the forest. Areas, once abundant with trees are now grass fields needed for cattle pasture.
Like I said before, population in Brazil and other South American countries are constantly increasing, so they need new farms for food. Farmers mostly use fire for clearing forests. This is the worst way to clear a forest!! Not only does this mean that large areas of forests are being destroyed, this also means that CO2 gets released in atmosphere giving more impact to climate change. According to scientists, deforestation is second most important cause for global.
The second largest cause for deforestation in the Amazon is logging. People often mistake logging as the biggest cause of deforestation but this is far from truth. In reality logging is causing only 3-4 % of total deforestation. Tropical rainforests are excellent sources of many quality and expensive wood, and this is the reason why many people turn to illegal logging as highly profitable business. Illegal logging is still a big problem in Brazil, and there is still not a sufficient control that ends this logging. Unfortunately, the Brazilian government doesn’t take serious actions against illegal loggers. The longer the government delays serious action the more the Amazon gets destroyed.
Scientists are saying that when all these deforestation factors are summed up, that within two decades from now the Amazon rainforest will be reduced by 40%! If this happens, then this would probably be one of the biggest environmental disasters in history. I think that it is pathetic that people can let this happen. Our planet is fragile and we need to stop destroying the rainforests. We might have the power to destroy, but we also have the power to prevent this from happening in the future.