|Uses of the Rainforest|
|Uses of the Rainforest
Rainforests do not only provide material goods, they also provide invaluable services for us. Around 25% of the people in the world depend in one way or another on the water from the rainforest. The trees and soil of the rainforest acts like a sponge, storing water from frequent downpours. They prevent the precious water from directly flowing into the rivers, seas and oceans. When the rainforest are cleared, millions of people are losing a precious source of water. There may be severe water shortages in nearby areas and in areas further away, there would be major floods occuring as there would be no more rainforest to soak up the water.
In another way, the rainforest also helps to lower the the temperatures around the world. They act as a huge and global air conditioner. If you could observe a rainforest from a distance, you would see that it makes up a dark surface. This dark surface absorbs heat from the sun and reduce the temperatures. When the trees are cut down, there would not be a dark surface to absorb the heat. Instead, there would be a lighter surface formed by the remaining crops and plants, and this surface reflects the heat back into the atmosphere causing temperatures to rise. This change in temperature can alter weather patterns around the world on a global scale. Droughts, famines and floods may occur in different parts of the world causing massive damage.
Moreover, the rainforest works against the advanced greenhouse effect. One of the major greenhouse gases, carbon dioxide, traps the sun's rays in the atmosphere, leading to a rise in world temperatures and global warming which is heating the planet and threatening our future. Carbon dioxide is generally given out during energy usage, material consumption, driving, and from cutting and burning wood or vegetation. The situation is made worse when uncontrolled logging occurs and when tropical rainforests are burnt. These account for almost one-third of carbon emissions in the world.
Conserving the rainforest helps to keep global temperatures right. By stopping deforestation, we can make the world a cooler place and better place for us to live in.