Powered by Blogger.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Decline in Forest Productivity and Effects on Economy

No comments :

The increasing human population has put tremendous pressure on land for housing, agriculture, farming, pasture development, grazing by cattle and the production of various types of consumer goods through industrialization. For this land has to be acquired by claiming wetlands, mangroves and by large scale deforestation. In Indonesia; about 68000 sq km of land have been allocated for new plantations for the production of palm oil. Here are some more examples of decline in forest productivity due to different reasons.

1. The total forest area in the world has been estimated to be around 3,869 million hectares. Out of this area about 95% is covered with natural forest and 5% is covered with regenerated forest. The natural forests are being lost or being converted to other uses of land at an alarming rates. For example, about 16.1 million hectares of natural forests were lost during 1990 – 2000.The annual forest loss at the Pan-tropical level has been estimated to be 9.2 million hectares.
2. According to the Food and Agricultural Organisation, the global loss of forests during the period1990 – 2000 has been around 9.4 million hectares per year.
3. The destruction of forests and grasslands is causing extinction of more than 12% of bird species, 25% of mammal species and about 33% of amphibian species.
4. In spite of increasing awareness about deforestation on global scale during recent years, the total area under forests is declining continuously.
5. About 850 million hectares of forest land is degraded in Asia and Pacific accounting for 24% of the region’s land. It was during 1981 – 1990 that deforestation in Asia and Pacific regions increased from 3.9 million hectares per year against 3.9 million hectares per year during 1981 – 1990.On the global level, the annual forest loss runs at about 12 million hectares per year, mostly in developing countries.
6. The period between 1976–,has been the period of Plantation Forestry. During this period, dense forest cover was destroyed from 46 to 36 million hectares which reduced the livelihood options for forest dependent poor people especially tribal people.

Image 1

Image 2

The land denuded of forests, is taken away with the rain water to cause the Siltation of rivers which finally leads to frequent floods. Floods claim large number of lives of humans and cattle every year. Great properties are ruined by devastating floods and great amounts of money are spent on rescue and rehabilitation of people. Thus, the decline in the forest productivity causes great losses to economy.

Causes of decline in Forest Productivity
The world average of per person forest cover is estimated to be one hectare where as in India; it is just 0.10 hectare or so. Forests of India are being destroyed at the rate of 12.5 million hectares per year. If this trend continues, a day may come when we may have to face acute environmental crises in all fronts. We have already studied about all possible reasons of the depletion of the forest cover, and that need not be repeated here in detail. How ever to recall , some important reason behind the depletion of the forest cover are – the explosion of human population, overgrazing by cattle like sheep and goats, mining activities and heavy industrialisation , deforestation along hill slopes and the construction of roads along hillsides. Since forests contribute a lot to the national and local economy up to remarkable extent, loss of forest economy is a serious loss to the national economy

Efforts to Recover the Loss of Forest Productivity and to Improve the Economy
There is an increasing awareness regarding the impact of the loss of the Forest Productivity on economy across the world. People are now relying on plantation for the production of industrial wood. Nearly half of the plantation in the world is not more than 15 years old. Asia has become the world leader in terms of plantation as more than 62% of all the forest plantation done by the year  2000 across the globe, has been done in this region alone. Some very important signs of human efforts for raising forest productivity are –

1. The Private Sector Investment in plantation in developing countries has gone up during recent years.
2. The foreign investment in plantation sector has increased considerably.
3. Communities and small landowners are producing trees for selling to private companies and generating income though it is doing a very little good to environment.
4. The timber harvesting has been banned by many countries in order to conserve their forest resources or to check the economic losses due to natural calamities like land slides or floods.
5. Some countries have put restrictions on the export of wood so as to address the problems of national environment and markets.
6. The World Trade Organisation (WTO) Committee on trade and environment and the Intergovernmental Forum on Forests are considering issues pertaining forest trade.

Key Words : decline, forest productivity, overgrazing, WTO, InterGovernmental Forum for Forests

No comments :

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.