When a forest is cleared and new trees are
planted, the diversity of animals is not brought back. A plantation of one or a few kinds of trees does not support as many life forms as a
natural forest. These plantations will not produce as much high-quality timber. The trees in natural forests have been
growing for hundreds and even thousands of years. Planted trees are cut as soon as eighty years after they are planted.
Planting trees and logging, then planting and logging again in continuing cycles can degrade soil and water. Water often washes soil away on cleared slopes, making the area unsuitable for new trees, and destroying riparian zones below. Plantations are also much more susceptible to pests and diseases. Pest controls and fertilizers are often used on plantations, which may have other unfavorable effects on soil and water.
All over the world, even trees that are not being cut directly are dying from other causes, including diseases, pollution and soil degradation. Photo by Maya Walters.
[deforestation] [climate change] [loss of biodiversity] [pollution] [erosion] [fire]
[forest life] [biodiversity] [types of forests] [soil] [water] [riparian zones] [pests]
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