Quote Of The Day

“I recently have started using the well-known book, The Skeptical Evironmentalist by Bjorn Lomborg…In the section on forests, Lomborg states that in the previous 50 years before publication (in 2001), contrary to the assertions of various people and organisations, the total area of land covered by woods and forests barely changed at all. He cites figures produced by the United Nations. When it comes, specifically, to tropical forests, he states that the best estimate is that the area covered by them decreased at a rate of 0.46 per cent a year in the previous 15 years. Again, he cites United Nations figures in his analysis”. —James Bartholomew, writing in the blog The Welfare State Were In

2 Responses to “Quote Of The Day”

  • First of all, are we talking just about the United States or about the whole world here? Europe and large parts of Africa have been deforested for hundreds of years. The deforestation of Africa contributes largely to the desertification happening there. In the United States, the total area of forested land doesn’t change much because many logged forests are repopulated with a monoculture, meaning only one type of tree is replanted, usually a species that will grow fast, tall, and straight to maximize return and minimize the time until the next cutting. While this maintains the total area, it does not maintain the ecological and habitat viability of the land. AKA a tree farm is not a forest. This same practice happens very often in South American rainforest, as Americans and other wealthy nations have developed a taste for rare and expensive tropical hardwoods.

  • I haven’t read the book, so I don’t know exactly what it said, but just because some parts of the world “have been deforested for hundreds of years”, does not mean that it’s at the magnitude that some would like you to believe. The world is a very large place, so it would take alot to displace even 1% per year, so .46% may seem like alot to those in the area, but it can still be small compared to the world at large.

    Either way, it sounds like a book worth reading, it’s certainly on my Wishlist now.

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