Deforestation is the "action or process of forest clearance." In other words and in general it is referred to as the destruction of forests.
2. How serious is the problem of deforestation?
Here are some interesting facts about this threat.
• So far we have lost about 50% of original forests.
• Each year we lose 13 million hectares of forests, equivalent to 36 football fields per minute.
• Deforestation is the source of 20% of global carbon emissions.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) estimates that at least 1/3 of forests in the world will be affected by climate change.
3. What is the main cause of forests destruction?
Forests all around the world are destructed mainly by:
• Land-use change
• Illegal logging
• Forest fires
• Climate change
World Bank estimates suggest that governments would be losing $ 5 billion in revenue due to illegal logging. This money could be invested in social development projects such as hospitals and schools construction.
Felling trees in forests in large quantities contribute to increase the effects of climate change. This can lead to extreme drought scenarios that would increase the frequency of forest fires.
4. What can we do to stop forests destruction?
There is still much to be done, but we have to start now.
One of the things you can do is use consumer power. When buying furniture, choose those that have used legal timber, and if possible, timber certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). You can identify these products by the stamp bearing this abbreviation.
5. What is WWF doing to address this threat?
WWF works with governments, local populations and the timber industry to protect forests.
To date, WWF has supported the protection of 80 million hectares of forests in protected areas.
We've helped over 300 companies in the world to sell $ 44.6 billion of responsibly managed timber products, through the Global Forest and Trade Network (GFTN).