Deforestation: Effects on Humans and the Environment

Forests around the world are home to millions of species of fauna, flora and other natural resources. Forests offer many benefits that go beyond wildlife. Forests are an integral part of the carbon cycle. They help to balance greenhouse gas emissions, improve the air quality, and protect the environment from climate change. As more forests are cleared by companies for agriculture and other industries, the entire world is affected. Each year, millions upon millions of animals are killed and millions are affected by deforestation.

Deforestation poses a threat to ecosystems which are vital for both wildlife and humans. The forests are home to some of the most iconic wild animals, such as the panda, the jaguar, and many other species of vegetation. Forests are more than just important for their survival.

However, if humans continue to destroy forests at the current rate, forests may reach their breaking point. The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization reports that humans (or more specifically, corporations and industries) have converted 420,000,000 hectares to other uses since 1990. This represents more than 1 billion acres of forest cleared for strip mining and cattle grazing. Animal agriculture is the worst industry in the world.

Deforestation is the mass removal of trees over a large area. The term deforestation is used most often to refer to the human clearing of trees. Trees can also be destroyed by natural processes such as fire and flooding. Most commonly, deforestation is used to clear land for agriculture or to collect timber from fallen trees.

It doesn’t matter what causes deforestation, it always results in the destruction of ecosystems that played an important part in protecting our planet.

Link between factory farming pollution and deforestation

Every year, billions of animals are killed and raised in factory farms to be used for human consumption. This does more harm than animals. It also damages the planet.

Factory farms house thousands of animals in close quarters. These factories create so much waste that they pollute water and air around them, creating health problems for residents nearby. Factory farms have negative impacts on the surrounding area.

Forests act as a “carbon sink”, which helps to prevent climate change. They absorb carbon dioxide, which helps to remove excess greenhouse gases from our atmosphere and turn it into oxygen. The “greenhouse effect” occurs when too many greenhouse gases are left. This is when they trap heat from sunlight and raise global atmospheric temperature. The greenhouse effect is the most important factor in human-caused climate changes.

What causes depression?
Human activity is the most common cause of deforestation. Forested land is used by many industries to produce their products such as paper, mining and logging.

Animal Agriculture
To meet global demand for meat, meat producers use ecologically-valuable forest habitats to graze livestock. The FAO estimates that 40% of tropical deforestation occurred between 2000 and 2010. This is mainly due to animal agriculture.

Livestock ranching
Cattle ranching is one of the most heavily forested forms of agriculture. Meat producers have cleared 45,000,000 hectares (or 112,000,000 acres) of dense forest to make it possible for cattle to graze. This is equivalent in size to 84 million football pitches.

Growing animal feed
Soybean production is a major factor in deforestation. While some soybeans are used to make soy sauce or other products for people, 75% of all soy production goes to feed animals.

What are the EFFECTS on Deforestation?
Forests not only house millions upon millions of animal and plant species but also absorb greenhouse gas emissions that make our planet more livable. It can be dangerous for our species’ long-term survival if humans cause forest destruction in order to gain short-term economic benefits.

Deforestation has a negative impact on the human health

Forest habitats can be destroyed by humans, and wildlife and insects will seek refuge near forests. Animal migration can be caused by unnatural or dangerous contact between people, animals, and wildlife. It is dangerous because animals can transmit disease to humans. These pathogens can lead to diseases called zoonotic diseases.

Food insecurity
They provide water, food and employment for communities that live near forests. The fertile soil can be used to grow crops or harvest medicinal plants from the trees. This can result in food insecurity as these communities may not have the resources to grow food.