Deforestation is the removal of trees and other plants from forest areas more quickly than they can be replanted or regenerated naturally. It is a problem because of the parts that the trees have to play in stabilising the climate, atmospheric composition and soil structure.

Reasons for Deforestation

Agricultural purposes – Grazing cattle or planting crops. Poor farmers in developing countries chop down a small area of trees and burn them, which provide nutrients for the soil. This supply is quickly exhausted so the farmers move on to a fresh area, and the cycle starts again. This occurs on a much larger scale for intensive or modern agriculture.
Commercial logging – the cutting down of trees for sale as timber or pulp. In the developed world, there are increasing demands for hardwoods such as mahogany and ebony. The rate at which trees are felled is increasing to meet these demands. People in third world countries need the timber for firewood, as it’s practically the only source of fuel available to people living there. The heavy machinery used (e.g. bulldozers) is just as to a forest overall as the chainsaws are to individual trees
Construction – of towns or dams, which flood of large areas. People who live in shanty towns in areas like Brazil are being encouraged to move to rural areas, so more land has to be cleared to accommodate these people.
Roads – they’re built through the forest to allow easier access to underground resources like iron and aluminium. Trees also have to be removed to mine these resources.

Effects of Deforestation

The Greenhouse Effect – During photosynthesis, carbon dioxide is taken in and oxygen is given out. Deforestation removes the carbon ‘sinks’, and coupled with the carbon dioxide emitted from the burning of fossil, the levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere increase. The carbon dioxide forms a blanket around the earth and traps...

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