Forests are vital for life, home to millions of species, they protect soil from erosion, produce oxygen, store carbon dioxide, and help control climate. Forests are also vital for us to live as they provide us with food, shelter and medicines as well as many other useful things. They also purify the air we breathe and water that we need to survive. Deforestation by humans is causing all of these necessary functions to be lessened, and hence damaging the atmosphere even further.
Forests play a huge role in the carbon cycle on our planet. When forests are cut down, not only does carbon absorption cease, but also the carbon stored in the trees is released into the atmosphere as CO2 if the wood is burned or even if it is left to rot after the deforestation process.
Smaller crops e.g. plants and agricultural crops also draw in carbon dioxide and release oxygen, however forests store up to 100 times more carbon than agricultural fields of the same area.
Deforestation is an important factor in global climate change. Climate change is because of a build up of carbon dioxide in out atmosphere and if we carry on cutting down the main tool we have to diminish this CO2 build up, we can expect the climate of our planet to change dramatically over the next decades.
It is estimated that more than 1.5 billion tons of carbon dioxide are released to the atmosphere due to deforestation, mainly the cutting and burning of forests, every year.
Over 30 million acres of forests and woodlands are lost every year due to deforestation; causing a massive loss of income to poor people living in remote areas who depend on the forest to survive.
You will find below a selection of useful information sites and resources
BBC Weather - The BBC Weather Centre provides UK and Worldwide weather services and maps for temperature, wind, satellite, pressure and radar.
Met Office - Weather and climate change
Climate Change - Climate change is a long-term change in the statistical distribution of weather patterns over periods of time that range from decades to millions of years.
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