The backwoods that are the forests and woodlands around us are diminishing at an alarming rate. The UN body Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that 7.3 million hectares or the size of Panama is getting lost each year. This portends some serious consequences for all inhabitants of the Earth, mankind included. Some of these are loss of species, global warming, famine, soil erosion and other nasty occurrences. It is absolutely important that this loss of forests and woodlands is reversed. Here are some of the top reasons to save our backwoods.
- Protect the species
70% of all land species both animal and plant, live in forests and woodlands. Loss of backwoods is posing a grave danger to these species as they no longer have a habitat which forces them to move elsewhere where they are not able to cope. This leads to species die-off. Protecting the forests keeps these species alive and multiplying.
- Medicinal value
Vital medicines like those against Malaria come from plants. The amazing fact is that about only 1% have been studied for medicinal properties. This means there remains a high chance that very powerful medicines are yet to be discovered in the forests.
- Regulating rain patterns
Plants play a very useful role in regulating rain patterns. Rainforests hold half of the water in the ecosystem by holding it in their roots and leaves. This water evaporates to form clouds which are then dispersed by the wind. This helps regulate and distribute rain. Without forests desertification occurs which is the drying up of land such that it cannot support life adequately.
- Food supply
A big portion of our food comes from the rainforest ecosystem. These include nuts, bananas, fish, meat and numerous other foods. Loss of forests and the species in them increases over-reliance on cultivated foods, and risks of famine when they fail to grow.
- Global warming
Global warming is a big contributor to climate change seen in the form of climate change that is increasingly being seen in form of severe storms, harsh droughts and winters. Rainforests reverse global warming by taking in the carbon in the atmosphere.
The forests offer great natural beauty. They are great tourist attractions as people go in to see the amazing forms and colors of different species. By preserving forests, this beauty can be seen by generations to come.
- Local economies
Forests and woodlands support a wide variety of economic activities like tourism, agriculture and so on. Without forests people lose livelihoods and are forced to move into cities or depend more on the same forests.