1. Forests cover 31 percent of the planet’s land area
In the middle of the monotonous universe, covered with water, sand, ice, grass, and large green oasis, the Earth would look like a true paradise in the eyes of the visitors from outer space. However, in earlier geological epochs, our planet wasn’t covered with trees. Only after the forests have covered the land, the earth has become an ideal habitat for a flourishing life.
2. Over the last ten years about five million hectares of forest permanently disappeared
In just ten years, from 2000 to 2010, the 13 million hectares of forest disappeared (7.8 million hectares of new forests). Forest areas are being destroyed the fastest in Latin America and Africa.
Green Forest by Joni Niemela
3. As much as 80 percent of the entire plant and animal life on Earth lives in forests
Forests are crucial for maintaining biodiversity on the planet. Forests are the habitat not only for timber but also for numerous animals and plants. As forests disappear, thousands of other species of flora and fauna also permanently go extinct.
4. Lives of more than 1.6 billion people depend on forests
People in the past were much more dependent on the forests, but even today a fifth of the world population lives from the forest. Also, 300 million people actually live in forests. If forests are gone, these people will remain homeless.
5. Forests are an important economic resource
Annual turnover in the forest business is 327 billion dollars. Nearly 30 percent of the forests is now being used for a variety of wood products.
6. The atmosphere and climate on Earth crucially depend on the forested areas
Forests are an important factor for the climate system. Also, without forests there would not be enough oxygen on the planet, because the forest literally are the Earth’s lungs. Especially important are the tropical forests, which account for as much as 36 percent of the world’s forests, but they are also the fastest disappearing ones.
Monsoon by Beatrice Heydiri
7. The United Nations declared the 2011 to be the the International Year of Forests
The procedure to declare the 2011 to be the International Year of Forests was launched back in 2005. year, on the initiative of Croatia. The initiative was finally realized in the form of UN resolution, in December 2006.
8. Celebration of the International Year of Forests includes a large number of countries
During this year, worldwide activities were organized in oreder to educate the youth about the benefits and importance of forests.