Foreste, nel 2014 persi 18 milioni di ettari di copertura arborea

Deforestation: in 2014, 18 million hectares of tree cover were lost

The removal of trees has led to an increase of the average temperature on Earth

MILAN - Troubling data has been released from the United States. The Earth lost 18 million hectares of tree cover in 2014, with particularly high percentages lost near the Mekong River Basin and in West Africa. The losses, equivalent to an area twice the size of Portugal, are the highest recorded since 2001, according to a report published by the Global Forest Watch and produced by the University of Maryland. The data revealed a surprising trend: much of the deforestation occurred outside the places most affected by this scourge, such as Brazil and Indonesia. Cambodia is at the top of the list of countries with the most deforestation in 2014, followed by Sierra Leone, Madagascar, Uruguay, Paraguay, Liberia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Vietnam, and Malaysia. This is alarming information, as emphasized by Nigel Sizer, Global Director of the Forest Program of the World Resources Institute: "This analysis identifies a truly alarming increase in the rate of deforestation, which results in climate "hot spots" which were previously neglected".

Unbridled Deforestation

The report from the University of Maryland, presents the fact that forests are losing ground to the priorities of man, very often on the basis of whims or speculation, thereby putting great strain on the land. It is essential to raise awareness among those in the industry in order to improve supervision of forests, prevent illegal projects, and to encourage a greater demand for the production of sustainable goods. Trees absorb carbon dioxide and massive deforestation, which is present throughout the world, greatly contributes to the rising temperatures, something for which carbon emissions are also to blame. The process of reforestation has received wide acclaim as part of the latest UN climate programs. In September 2014, a new United Nations Summit was held in New York to discuss the primary needs of developing countries. The objective established is to restore 350 million hectares by 2030. Scientists agree that the increase in temperatures on Earth must be limited to 2 °C above pre-industrial levels in order to avoid catastrophic weather events, such as rising sea levels which threaten the entire population of the world. Between 1880 and 2012, the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change said that the average temperatures of the earth and of the ocean surface have risen by about 0.85 ° C.

by editorial staff