Environmental issue: tropical rainforest deforestation

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Environmental issue: tropical rainforest deforestation

By | October 2006
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In all rainforest regions in the world, deforestation has become a major problem. The rainforest is arguably the most complicated and largely interwoven ecosystem on land. However, this treasure is being lost and demolished day by day, the land being cleared away for the pure interest of money making, in the process of deforestation. Not only are thousands of species of organisms being driven to extinction, but we are also effectively eliminating any chance of studying many of the species. Also, deforestation has a major impact on the atmospheric balance of the world, and if it continues at the rate it is now, then soon the world's entire way of living will be forced to change, and not for the good. If the people of the world do not begin to be more contentious, then soon rainforests will become nothing more than a glorious legend of the past.

Rainforest deforestation is the term for cutting down trees, or entirely clearing away patches of the rainforest. Though this may seem to be a rather tedious process, but many decades of experience has taught people well on the different methods of deforestation. There are six main ways that rainforest deforestation occurs. In deciding which method to use, one must consider what the cleared space would be used for. For example, for a farmer who intends to clear some forest for the purpose of planting, he may either use the "slash and burn" method, or prepare the land for "Perennial shade" planting. The "slash and burn" method, which entails cutting down vegetation, and then burning the debris, is one that is used by those who wish to enrich the soils with minerals, and thereby produce more fertile soils for planting. "Perennial shade" method is one which leaves the tall, canopy trees to provide shade for the plants that cannot stand extreme sunlight, such as the major cash crop of coffee. Another method that does not completely destroy the area being deforested is called "selective logging." This is a...