As we witness World Rainforest day on June 22 every year, we all must be aware of the need for the conservation of rainforests around the world. as much as these evergreen canopies provide life on this planet to a variety of species, consisting of about ninety percent invertebrates and a third of bird species of the world. This article highlights their importance in our everyday lives.
Stabilizing Earth’s Climate
Rainforests contribute in stabilizing the planet’s climate and reduce global warming as they absorb carbon dioxide and release most of the world’s oxygen that we depend upon for survival.
The Amazon rainforest itself produces about 20% of the oxygen on Earth. The global water cycle thrives due to the rainforests, these evergreen woods add water to the atmosphere which then turns into clouds that then pour in different parts of the globe! If the rainforests didn’t continuously recycle gallons of water, contributing to rivers and irrigation systems all around the world, the rate of famines and droughts would drastically increase throughout the world.
Soil Erosion and Floods
During extreme rainstorms , the vegetation of the rainforests holds most of the water in the soil and the roots of the trees preventing flooding in a lot of areas. Trees contribute in controlling the amount of water that is held in the soil. In areas around the world where deforestation has occurred , the rainfall patterns have switched .
In some places, the rains have almost stopped falling, and in others, flooding has been caused. Although, cutting down of trees and depleting vegetation causes a high level of soil erosion in rainforests.
In most parts of the world including India, evergreen woods have served the means of livelihood to innumerable indigenous communities residing in the forests. The rainforest tribes manage their livelihood in ways which allows them to thrive without causing any harm to the forest and it’s resources. millions of indiginous people depend solely on rainforests for their survival and billions of people on the natural resources.
The rich rainforests of India including the Western Ghats, rainforests of Northeast India and Andaman and Nicobar islands provide home to a variety of different indigenous tribes and are a treasure of natural resources such as precious woods and endemic flora and fauna. The rainforests of Andaman and Nicobar have 2,200 varieties of plants , most of which are not even found in mainland India.
It is estimated that 25% of all medicines are made from natural resources of the rainforests. The endemic plants growing in Rainforets around the world contribute largely in curing illness worldwide. Let’s not forget that about 80% of our food also comes from the rainforests.
Overall, rainforests which are of utmost significance for the life on this planet, are depleting at an alarming rate due to several human activities. Deforestation and the deterioration of these forests can cause an immediate scarcity of natural resources throughout the world.
We can continue to collectively educate ourselves about the importance of rainforests and use our resources wisely and efficiently for the sake of this planet.
(The views expressed in the article are the author’s own. Let Me Breathe neither endorses nor is responsible for them.)