Deforestation. It’s not just for Brazil any more.
When people think about deforestation and global warming, they mostly think about Brazil. The Amazon rain forests. People in poor countries fecklessly chopping down forests to get at the land and the mineral resources they cover, unable to value or protect the forests that are the world’s lungs and the only practical way to sequester carbon.
A study from the National Academy of Sciences showed that, between 2000 and 2005 (the years the study covered) the US lost its forest cover at a faster rate than Brazil – 6% per year, compared with Brazil’s 3.2%. (The study is written in academic language; a more accessible article based on the data was published on mongabay.com.)
The San Francisco Bay Area clearly does not intend to be left behind. Thousands of trees have been “removed” in the Presidio and in UC Berkeley. And besides the thousands of trees that may be felled on Mt Sutro, up to a million more trees are threatened in the East Bay, ostensibly to reduce fire-hazard but more probably for native plant “restoration.”
The website A Million Trees has been set up to monitor these projects, fight unnecessary tree-felling, and draw attention to the issues of deforestation, toxic herbicides, and the potential for increased fire hazard.