|Support the Slow-Prevent-Restore Initiative|
It is hard to imagine a world without trees but at our current pace of deforestation there will soon be large parts of the world without them – and Think WI-SH wants to change that trajectory because trees join oceans and atmosphere as the irreplaceable components the planetary ecosystem. Trees recycle carbon dioxide and produce clean oxygen. They stabilize the soil, reducing erosion and preventing mudslides. Through the transpiration process, trees vaporize water into the atmosphere from underground water tables, moderating temperatures and moisturizing the air. They provide food, shelter and protection for thousands of animal species, including human beings. Yet despite their fundamental importance to life on Earth, there is 40 percent less forest now than there was when agriculture started 11,000 years ago. More importantly, 100 million hectares of the remaining 4 billion hectares have been lost in just the past ten years – a rate equal to about 36 American football fields every minute. The magnitude of it is truly staggering.
This deforestation is typically due to natural fires, natural decay and disease, agricultural fires, agricultural clear-cutting, ranching and commercial development, non-renewable logging, fuel-wood harvesting. Yes, there is natural and human-driven renewal (the best logging companies actually plant more than they cut!), but the ignorant and ofttimes wanton destruction of forests far outpaces renewal at the moment.
Your donation to our “Slow, Prevent and Restore Initiative” will enable us to:
- Slow, and in some places stop current habitat destruction through deforestation;
- Prevent new habitat destruction; and restore already-damaged habitat.
Part of slowing down the rate of deforestation is increasing the rate of reforestation by speeding up tree planting efforts wherever forests are shrinking. Part of speeding up the rate of re-forestation efforts is growing the opportunities to educate people about the importance of forests – and the importance of individual initiative and personal responsibility in protecting the trees around us, not just the ones in far-off forests we see only on National Geographic Explorer. And part of growing the opportunities to educate people about the importance of forests is to treat business interests, environmental organizations and the people between them all as partners not enemies. We are truly all in this together and while there will always be competing interests, the Think WI-SH goal is to turn old enemies into new allies working toward a common goal of nudging human activity in “greener” directions that make sense to everyone.
Forests and Deforestation:
- Forests cover 30 percent of Earth’s land area.
- The Amazon rain forest produces 20 percent of the world’s oxygen.
- Half of the world’s tropical forests have already been cleared.
- The world loses 46,000 -58,000 square miles of forest each year.
- All rain forests will probably be gone within 100 years.
- Tropical forests, where deforestation is most prevalent, trap more than 210 gigatons of carbon.
- Deforestation increases soil erosion, floods, sandstorms, wildlife extinction, and climate imbalances.
- Healthy forests help absorb human-generated greenhouse gases and carbon emissions, keeping the atmosphere in balance.
- Forests are home to 70 percent of the world’s plants and animals, and deforestation will in the next 25 years probably cause the extinction of almost 30,000 bird, animal, insect and plants species – which is a threat not only to biodiversity but also dangerous to human progress and even survival.