The Earth was once a lush green vegetation with absolutely no pollution or damage done to it. Early men were considerate and careful not to interfere with the natural order of things hence they lived in hollow spaces in rocks called caves and age shrubs and fruits. Then came man and his innovations, jet engines, skyscrapers, diesel engines, leisure construction and factories that produce so much fumes and smog which they empty into the atmosphere with reckless abandon. Year in, year out, man’s innovations has cost the earth its natural state as man keeps replacing natural gifts of mother nature with their own creations.
They invented planes which kills thousands of birds yearly when they get trapped in the plane engines, they invented gas plants that practice the much criticized gas flaring, man invented architectural designs that involves clearing thousands of hectares of land to build edifice for them to enjoy while forgetting that the earth keep groaning in pain for the pleasure of man. Waste is released into bodies of water and oil spills kill aquatic animals on a daily basis, with great oil spills in international waters sometimes going unnoticed, until watchdogs started arising to keep the actions of organizations in check and to call them out and slam sanctions on them if they fail to maintain and adhere to the guidelines set to keep the planet safe and damages minimal.
Deforestation and Pollution is simply the destruction of the natural order of things, i.e felling of trees and releasing harmful substances into the earth. Annual deforestation rate stands tall at 1.3 million km² per decade while more than half of the worlds population contribute to pollution daily especially in developing countries where there are few or no rules guarding against such.
Both deforestation and Pollution come at a great price as the earth has since showed that the various destructive actions have a negative effect on her. The Ozone layer is depleting and global warming is becoming a very popular topic on ecologists lips as mother nature tries to fight for her life.
Several factors contribute to Deforestation and Pollution, some of which are:
• Wildfire: This often occur as a result of lightning striking a tree and getting ignited. It is mostly common during dry seasons and can be very disastrous to the forests and create unhealthy environmental conditions. An example of this is the Australian wildfire which happened earlier this year. The wildfire left thousands of animals dead or maimed and millions of trees burnt to ashes as fire fighters struggle to extinguish the raging inferno. Wild fires also occur as a result of bush burning, a practice, common amongst Africans during huntimg expeditions and it is mostly responsible for more than 75% of wildfires in Africa.
• Natural Disasters: natural disasters like typhoons, earthquakes and tsunamis also contribute to destruction of forests and Pollution of environments as waste are taken from areas and brought into countries by tsunamis and storms and tornadoes bring down trees.
• Logging: This singular act contributes greatly to Deforestation as loggers cut down trees to make household furniture and other things for the satisfaction of man. Although there are restrictions in place to protect against indiscriminate and excessive felling of trees, it is still not enough to protect trees from this commercial wildlife murderers.
• Farming: Farming contributes to 80% of deforestation reasons as farmers clear large expanse of forests to cultivate crops and rear animals. Most lands are cleared to give way to ranches and plantations which provide food for man but also limits the strength of the forest in converting our carbon emissions to give us oxygen.
• Construction and Urbanization: Innovation comes at its own cost, and we are not talking about monetary cost but its opportunity cost to wildlife and forests. In creating urban centers and regions, large expanse of land have to be cleared and trees have to be fell down to make way for the development pf such places. This contributes in no small amount to Deforestation which is weakening our planet.
The felling of trees and Pollution of our environment have adverse effects on man and his environment. As nature suffers, so do we in no small measures. Although it might not be so visible now but its effects can be seen all around us. Some of the effects include:
➢ Droughts: some areas known to have been so lush and full of life suddenly become so dry and void of life due to draught. Climate change caused by pollution and deforestation can ve blamed for this but the primary cause of this is man’s activities on earth.
➢ Erosion: The washing away of the top soil is caused by removal of trees that once provided shade from the blast of heat from the sun. The ground get too dry and its top soil gets washed away making it virtually impossible for trees to grow back in the area.
➢ Depletion of the Ozone layer: The Ozone layer protects earth from the radiations from the sum but it is fast depleting and UV rays escaping into our atmosphere. Forests like the Amazon, Indonesia forest, borneo and Forests in Africa cushion the effect of pollution but since a large part of this forest is taken down daily, its ability to support the ozone layer is gradually reducing.
Solutions To Prevent Deforestation and Pollution
• Putting in place laws that guard against indiscriminate felling of trees and environmental pollution. Same way there are laws protecting animals from poachers, we should have laws protecting forests from greedy men who want to make money at the expense of our planet.
• Educate people on the effects and consequences of pollution and deforestation. If people are aware that the death of planet earth is the death of all life on it, they will be more conscious and make an effort to preserve our natural habitats and the natural order of things.
• Providing alternatives to wood and deforestation. In China, commercial land is a very important commodity and as such they tend to manage their available land by building houses in a cluster design to save space and prevent against felling of trees. Same way, different countries should also adopt such laws and provide alternative options to clearing waste and providing building or farming spaces.
Plant trees and clear waterways. If Dubai can turn a dessertinto a flourishing place with a clean environment and neatwater ways, every country can do it too.
• Sign environmental protection bills into law prohibiting gas flaring, emptying waste into bodies of water and deforestation for commercial purposes.