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SOS Rhino : In the News : Saving Our Children's Forest
 

Saving Our Children's Forest

  March 22, 2007 20:24 PM

By Melati Mohd Ariff

(In conjunction with World Forestry Day on March 21 and World Water Day on March 22)

KUALA LUMPUR, March 22 (Bernama) -- In 2005, there were just under four billion hectares of forests worldwide and deforestation had continued at an alarming rate of about 13 million hectares per year, mainly involving the clearing of land for agriculture. On top of that, on average, 104 million hectares of forests are destroyed each year by forest fires, pests or climatic events such as droughts and floods. These were some of the significant findings of the Global Forest Resources Assessment 2005 conducted by Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations. Forests are some of the most valuable eco-systems in the world as they represent over 60 percent of the world's biodiversity. They are also significant in both ecological functions and in protecting Earth's freshwater resources. Many products of economic value can be harvested from forests besides being ehome' to native inhabitants. Despite their phenomenal importance, deforestation is slowly wiping out forests from the Earth's surface and accelerating global warming.

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