Before you can understand anything surrounding deforestation, you must know what it actually is. Many people believe that it is just cutting down trees, specifically in the rainforests. They are correct, but there is much more to it than that. Yes, deforestation is cutting down trees, but what many people don’t know are the effects that it has. Deforestation affects almost every aspect of life. It affects the atmosphere, biosphere, hydrosphere, lithosphere, as well as the global economy and politics. Many people believe that deforestation is a modern idea that was brought on by the industrialization era. The truth is deforestation has been around since the beginning of mankind. Scientists believe that most of Europe had become deforested by 1850 (Kaplan 3024). As you can see, deforestation has been occurring for a long time, and globalization has just sped up the process and increased the rates.
But what all does deforestation actually affect? The list is nearly endless, because it is different in every environment and population. On a global scale though deforestation affects greenhouse gases, climate, soil fertility, water quality, watersheds, and biodiversity. Deforestation causes all of the CO2 gases stored in trees to be released into the atmosphere which increases greenhouse gases and ultimately affects the climate and global warming. Tropical deforestation alone, “accounts for about 15 percent of the world’s global warming pollution—more than that produced by every car, truck, plane, ship, and train on Earth” (Boucher 1). The area where deforestation occurs destroys the soil’s fertility inhibiting it from being able to regrow there. Erosion caused by deforestation runs off into streams, rivers, and lakes which affect the water quality and watersheds. Deforestation also affects biodiversity, because it kills or helps kill off plants and animals that are important to the local environment.
With all of these negative effects, you would...
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