It is a little known fact that while once rainforests made up about 14% of the earth’s surface, the figure today is less than 6%. That means that over time, for mostly commercial reasons, we have lost more than half of the rainforests in the world – and if things continue at their present rate, we could lose the remainder in the first half of this century. When you consider that trees are an invaluable source of oxygen for humans, nutrition for soil and a habitat for wildlife, this is a scary statistic.
It has also been calculated that almost half of the different species of plants and animals in the world will come under threat from deforestation in the next twenty-five years. Although many of these species are relatively unknown to man, their contribution to the delicate balance of life on this planet cannot be overestimated. Throwing them away so that we can have cheaper fast food and certain other conveniences is a terribly short-sighted thing to do.
A fact often ignored is that there are tribes living in many of the world’s rainforests, and that over the last century we have already lost close to a hundred different tribes. By destroying a tribe’s habitat, pressure is placed on the people in that tribe, and this pressure passes on to other people and areas. Once the rainforests are gone, what will be next to disappear? It is incumbent upon us to let our industries know that short-term thinking will cripple us all in the end.