What is deforestation? Glad you asked.
Deforestation refers to the decrease of forest areas across the world that are lost due to industrial agriculture, timber logging, mining, climate change, urban expansion and infrastructure.
While there are legitimate needs for consumption of natural resources to support the modern lifestyle we all desire, there are also techniques than can be used to minimize any negative environmental impacts and even replenish some of those resources. Responsible forestry techniques can yield unlimited use of tracts of land by replanting trees after each harvest. Forests that have been harvested but never replanted have unfortunate consequences to animals and humans that live in those areas. Fortunately, trees can be replanted and the damage that was previously evident can be successfully repaired! We all share the same air, no matter where we are on this planet. If we restore a billion trees halfway around the world, it has a direct impact on the locals and cleans the air for all the inhabitants of this earth.
A staggering 85% of deforestation is due to industrial agriculture. This mostly pertains to meat production, beef in particular, while soy and palm oil plantations follow closely behind. The land is cleared for crops and cattle by using slash and burn techniques. As a result over time, the soil becomes too degraded for crops which then requires a new patch of forest to be cleared and used until it can’t be used any longer. Too frequently, these tracts are left abandoned when they could be replanted with trees and the forest reestablished. Changing a few eating habits could slow down or reduce the demand on industrial agriculture. A meatless dinner one night a week, eating local and in season food, avoiding processed food and eating dairy in moderation. Another thing to remember is that 30% of food produced is wasted, so try to buy and make what you will eat.
Commercial logging companies cut down the forest for wood and wood products, as well as fuel wood and charcoal. Not only are areas of the forest cut down, the machinery used compacts the soil and makes it more acceptable to erosion. Which causes silt to be washed into the surrounding waters and animal habitats. Individuals can do their part to help reduce logging by recycling. On average 2,000 pounds of paper recycled prevents 17 trees being cut down. Buying recycled products is another way to contribute along with going paperless with bills and junk mail.
Mining is a massive operation and requires building roads, railway lines and even power stations, which puts that much more pressure on the forest and surrounding waters. Mining is on the rise due to the increase demand for minerals such as lithium, copper and nickel. Technology is a big driver of mining. The production of cell phones, tablets and laptops all need said minerals. So, taking care of your devices and using them until they are nonoperational instead of buying a new model every year, is a great step to help reduce the need for new mining.
Wildfires, droughts and storm surges destroy millions of acres of forest a year, which can be a natural event, man made or a result of climate change. Carbon dioxide levels are at their highest in human history due to the build up of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere which is driving global warming, as it traps heat in the lower atmosphere. Trees help cool the planet by taking in the harmful green house gases into their trunks and branches then releasing oxygen back into the atmosphere. A mature tree can absorb 48 pounds of carbon dioxide per year. It is the most efficient process of capturing carbon and we can plant a nearly limitless amount of trees!
The growth of human population has had a tremendous effect on deforestation. With more people comes more of the forest being demolished for more homes, roads, bridges, dams, airports, harbors and more. The clearing of forest effects the ecosystems by displacing plants and wildlife.
We believe that you should always leave a place better than you found it. Our industry carries with it a large carbon foot print, and we want to do our part to shrink that footprint as much as possible. That’s why we partnered with Eden Reforestation projects. A nonprofit that is committed to alleviating extreme poverty and restoring healthy forests all around the globe. Eden has planted over 650 million trees in 8 different countries which include Ethiopia, Madagascar, Nepal, Haiti, Indonesia, Mozambique. Eden employs the locals whom may be living in extreme poverty and provides them with with the education and tools needed to plant, grow and protect the trees for years.
Every purchase you make with us helps plant trees. As of January 2022, VMACS INC. has planted 78,780 trees and helped create 780 working days of employment. Help us do something great!