The significance of communication in understanding the role of tropical rainforests in preventing climate change.
The global atmosphere is undergoing rapid change, especially in terms of increasing average temperatures worldwide, and this is primarily attributed to human activity (Malhi & Wright, 2004). One important factor in this increasing temperature is the constant clearing and destruction of tropical rainforests. It is crucial that the importance of tropical rainforests, as global heat and water pumps, carbon sinks and a direct mediator of climate change, is communicated to the general public for awareness. Without such communication, the importance of climate change and the key players remains elusive and no action will ensue.
Tropical rainforests are considered as global heat and water pumps (Malhi & Wright, 2004), suggesting that rainforests have an influence on climate. Rainforests absorb heat, and due to cooler air above the rainforests, rain develops, causing humidity and constant wet weather conditions in the forests. The forests evaporate large quantities of water, forming rain clouds which are transported to other parts of the world, causing rainfall. Deforestation directly affects this process and causes dryness in the rainforests, changing the rainfall pattern in the world.
Intact rainforests have a long-term storage capacity for carbon. Combustion of fossil fuels and land-use activities are increasing the Carbon Dioxide content in the atmosphere and it is predicted that atmospheric Carbon Dioxide will double this century (Chambers et al., 2001). Rainforests assimilate this Carbon Dioxide through photosynthesis and they account for almost 8% of the total atmospheric CO2 recycling (Malhi et al., 1998). Thus maintaining large rainforests as carbon storage reservoirs is an important strategy to control climate change, however deforestation continues, and this results in an increase in CO2 in the atmosphere as well as the destruction of...
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