In the last 40 years, more than one billion acres of tropical forests have vanished, equivalent in size to over half of the continental United States. The rate of cutting, burning and clearing shows no signs of abating.
Tropical forests store huge amounts of carbon. When their trees are cut or burned, the carbon is eventually released into the atmosphere, mixing with oxygen to form the long-lasting greenhouse gas carbon dioxide. The pace of deforestation is so great today that it accounts for an estimated 12 to 15 percent of global carbon dioxide emissions annually.
Economic forces drive this destruction — for timber, rangeland, mining and development.… Seguir leyendo »