Deforestation is the clearing of trees by humans. Although forest clearing has persisted in some form since living beings first transformed, it has dramatically risen since the 1960s.
Over half of the world’s tropical rainforest has been devastated ever since. Deforestation continues to be a significant hazard to forests worldwide, with one hectare lost every second.
It is the pervasive removal of trees from a specific plot of land to benefit human civilization. Despite knowing the risks of chopping down from the atmosphere, habitat destruction operations continue to rise.
The planet is rapidly experiencing rainforest destruction due to the increasing demand for fuel, space, raw materials, livelihood, etc.
But, contrary to popular belief, deforestation is not always hazardous. Here are the advantages and disadvantages of cutting down trees.
Table of Contents
Pros Of Deforestation
True, there are numerous disadvantages to deforestation. However, this approach is said to have some advantages that you should be aware of.
Some of the advantages of deforestation may include the following:
1. Agriculture And Industrialization
Many large wilderness areas are left unused when we could transform them into more good agricultural sites.
With the reduction of the forest, the gained space is favorable for producing nutrition that will sustain human civilization in the future.
This process can help provide access to freshwater resources for the growing population by producing more suitable farmland.
In this manner, tens of thousands of people who could be dying of starvation would be fed. A portion of these woodlands may also be used to build significant infrastructure facilities to help the thriving economy and, thus, the people economically.
2. Creates Job Opportunities
There are quite a few career options in the nations where deforestation is most prevalent. The majority of the workforce in these areas is trained for agriculture activities. Removal of forests is one method of creating logging careers.
Mining prospects in the areas create high-wage positions that otherwise would not prevail. Even converting the land to grow farm goods creates more job opportunities in this area. This process provides revenue for families who would not otherwise have any.
3. Mitigates Urban Overcrowding
In regions where deforestation is prevalent, urban sprawl is typical. Small developments can begin to form in regions initially identified as inaccessible by constructing innovative venues functional for diverse needs.
The usable space reduces urban population densities by inventing new land ownership possibilities that would not otherwise manifest.
Deforestation opens windows for economic opportunities while minimizing urbanization’s negative impacts.
4. Provides Day-to-day Resources
What are papers made of? Trees no longer benefit from lumber and can be converted into other wood products. Wood pulp can be used to make paper.
Additionally, we can make furniture out of materials collected from the woods (bark, leaves, roots, etc.).
Many of the goods we use daily are derived from species of plants, such as natural aspirin, sponges, chewing gum, carnauba wax, dye, and rubber.
5. Source Of Fuel
Forests provide an excellent source of firewood and charcoal. People in villages typically burn wood to generate heat energy. This energy is used to make meals or to safeguard the family from a frigid environment.
As a result of deforestation and the cutting down of trees and woods, people have cleaner energy to use in their daily lives.
Wood was the first source of energy for humans. It presently provides about 6% of the world’s primary energy supply.
6. Discovery And Exploration
When a forest is vacated, previously undiscovered species of animals and plants may be discovered.
We have traced tens of thousands of new lifeforms in the rainforest habitat since the 1950s due to scientific discoveries created partly by deforestation.
Explorers also revealed hundreds of new animals and insects during that period. New plants with drug-making potential can also be unearthed and used to cure new and developing illnesses.
Plant life infected with pathogens can also be executed, and we can prevent new diseases.
7. Creates Tax Revenues
The income generation solutions offered by deforestation operations do not end once the land has been wiped clean. Crop production results in higher levels of taxation on land and goods.
Mining and oil manufacturing units contribute primarily to the nation’s gross domestic product (GDP).
The excess GDP can help organize funds for hunger issues, drought, disaster risks, and even community forest restoration.
Cons Of Deforestation
As previously stated, deforestation has numerous negative effects. The most significant disadvantages of deforestation are as follows:
1. Habitat Destruction
Effects of Deforestation cause forest habitat fragmentation. Animals use trees for nutrition, housing, and breeding.
In such instances, biological diversity must seek different habitats to sustain themselves without trees.
When their native habitat is transformed, animal populations struggle with tremendous losses.
One such prime example is the Amazon Rain Forest. The species such as the howler monkey and northern spotted owl have been facing setbacks from habitat degradation.
2. Global Warming And Climate Change
Global warming and climate change are two significant consequences of deforestation overwhelming the entire planet today.
An increase in the concentration of greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide in the atmosphere creates the scenario where the planet heats.
These pollutants are heat-trapping gases that trap solar heat energy, raising atmospheric temperatures and causing global warming/climate change.
Without GHGs-absorber trees, more and more carbon components are discharged into the air from companies, motors, and other sources, resulting in climate change.
3. Frequent Flooding And Erosions
Forests offer soil stability. Water absorption is reduced in the absence of that stabilization offered by vegetation.
Water quickly runs through poor absorbent soil, causing flooding and erosion. Heavy flooding downstream is caused by excess water runoff into river systems, potentially increasing flash floods’ occurrence and intensity.
Plant roots bind soil to the surface. When there are no roots to grab the soil in position and no grasses to break the thrust of rainwater, topsoil erosion accelerates.
Due to poor moisture absorption, the forest lands become overworked, resulting in greater levels of erosion due to the lack of any restricting means against the stream of water.
4. Impacts On Local Water Supplies
The consequences of deforestation extend beyond temperature fluctuations. Tree removal can impact the local, regional, and worldwide water cycles.
For instance, many Brazilian cities rely on the Amazon rainforest for their water supply. Surrounding nations also rely primarily on this natural resource for water supply.
When we lose clean water and vegetation simultaneously due to clearcutting operations, there may be numerous unforeseeable consequences on the water cycle in the future.
5. Atmospheric Pollution
Trees, a natural cleaner, removes toxic chemicals, particles, and fumes from the surrounding air, sanitizing the air for a healthy and suitable life.
Deforestation and tree loss raise the proportion of dangerous substances and pollutant gases in the atmosphere, causing suffering to both animals and humans.
6. Extinction-level Events
We might be able to explore new life forms due to deforestation, but we are also annihilating ecosystems. Nature is flexible and adaptive, but only up to a certain level.
Many animal species fail to thrive without the wilderness, contributing significantly to mass extinctions. The procedure also has an impact on numerous plant species.
7. Interrupts Human Cultures
Our heritage may have progressed to be predicated around and within forests.
If we are disinclined to honor ancient cultures that have not evolved into modern societies, it says more about us than it does about them. We cannot substitute patriotism for purposeful human connection with one another.
Some tribal groups who live in these forested areas prefer to remain isolated from the outside world.
Hundreds of isolated communities exist in South America and Oceania, reflecting the heritage of humanity’s civilization. Deforestation, as such, has been threatening the tribal way of life.
Centuries ago, the human population was minimal, and the biosphere was so rich that humans looked at forests as a functional and never-ending asset. And there was no harm done!
Over time, our population has grown to levels that ancient traditions and forests cannot stabilize.
While deforestation may be requisite to some point in specific locations, it severely impacts our environment.
Now that you know the pros and cons, do you think deforestation is a boon or a bane?
(Last Updated on September 8, 2022)