What is Deforestation and What are the Top Causes?

 risk assessment forest

The first thought that comes to mind on hearing about deforestation is about the world losing the green cover. This rate of loss has significantly impacted the climate, biodiversity, and natural communities. While some of these trees would return because of the natural regrowth process but eventually, there’s going to be the loss of the much-needed forest cover.

Let’s understand the top drivers of deforestation and how they contribute towards the ecological balance (or imbalance).

  • Commodity-driven Deforestation: This is one of the most dominant drivers of deforestation and leads to the permanent loss of tree cover. This includes cutting down trees to use the land for commercial purposes like oil/gas production, mining, and agriculture. This deforestation for commodity production can pose a serious threat to the environment.
  • Shifting Agriculture: Another dominant driver of deforestation is shifting agriculture. This practice involves clearing a part of forests for growing crops in the short term. After the harvesting process is complete, the land is left for forests to regenerate. This could cause a temporary to permanent loss of tree cover depending on the place and land type.
  • Urbanization: Although small, urbanization causes permanent deforestation followed by a drastic economic impact. This includes clearing forest areas for urban expansion and intensification.
  • Wildfire: There are two reasons for wildfires, natural and manmade. While natural wildfires cause temporary deforestation and the green area returns after some time, wildfires caused by humans can cause climate change and ecological imbalance.

So, if you are planning to invest in a native forest, you should get a forest risk assessment done to ensure you return the best to the environment.