CLIMATE CHANGE AND OUR RAINFORESTS
After years of research, there is no longer any doubt that climate change is not just occurring, but that it is caused by human actions—mostly by our reliance on fossil fuels, but also by the massive deforestation that has occurred in the 20th and 21st centuries. By protecting our forests, we help fight the worst effects of climate change.
What is climate change?
Climate change refers to the increase in the Earth’s average temperature experienced over the last century, and projected to continue into the next. In the last hundred years, the global temperature has risen by 1.4 degrees Fahrenheit. Less than 1.5 degrees doesn’t sound like a big difference but that small change in temperature is leading to dramatic changes on our planet.
The rainforests we protect, trap CO2
Did you know that forests absorbed about half of fossil fuel greenhouse gas emissions in 2009?
Forests can be considered a carbon “sink” actually storing more carbon than the atmosphere itself.
The world’s forests interact with the atmosphere and the carbon cycle in key ways. Plants absorb harmful carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, converting it into organic carbon, which is found in all living things. The more forests we have, the more carbon we take out of the atmosphere!
By protecting our forests and engaging in reforestation projects in places where our forests have been cleared or damaged we help trap carbon that is already causing climate change. Because of this, almost every nation has committed to help protect our remaining rainforests at the United Nations’s Climate Change conferences. It’s up to us to hold them accountable to their promises!