The Effects of Industry on the Deforestation in India

The problems of deforestation have been causing some growing concerns for decades throughout the globe and India is no exception. Ever since civilization has become more advanced with new technology, humans have been exploiting various resources of nature for profit and survival. Due to the rise of the world’s population and the potential promise of wealth, greed has seemed to cause the rampant over-exploitation of earth’s natural resources, thus leading to environmental issues like deforestation. In places like India, the effects of deforestation have caused irreparable damage across the country wiping out natural habitats and delicate ecosystems.

Deforestation is caused by the removal or clearing of trees and forests so that the land can be used for agricultural land, pastures, or the building of homes and other such properties; it also destroys the natural habitats of wildlife. The trees removed from the designated area are usually cut and sold, or burned. As a result, carbon dioxide is released into the air increasing the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

India has a rich history that shows their ancient traditions and culture sought to do everything possible to preserve the forests and its resources. According to one article speaking of India’s sacred rituals, “Forests were revered by the people and a large number of religious ceremonies centered on trees and plants. The Agni Purana, written about 4000 years ago, stated that man should protect trees to have material gains and religious blessings.” So how have we gone from preserving our natural environment to almost completely destroying it? It is believed that once industry and trade with other nations began, that’s when the environmental problems started—and never really stopped. India, along with most of the other developing nations, is experiencing industrial growth and a population explosion, resulting in fast depletion of their forests.

Jessica Frei, another writer who covered this topic, shares a statistic on just how detrimental the deforestation issue in India has become: “India once had 14.8 billion acres of land that was forested, but now has just dwindled to 8.6 billion acres.” Another fact, according to the India State of the Forest Report (ISFR) in 2011, states, “forest cover has declined by 367 sq. km compared to the forest cover in the preceding ISFR in 2009.” Even though the forest cover has stabilized since the 1980’s, there is still cause for alarm; it is estimated that within 100 years, if little is done to change current trends, there will be no rainforests left on earth.

In order to create a balance between forests and recent development, India is enacting laws and amendments to ensure that pristine forests are preserved and protected. The government is also trying to involve people in becoming awareness of the priceless forest ecosystems and how to save its resources. By spreading the necessary awareness, people can begin to understand the importance of the world’s forests and wildlife. It’s a time for us to do our part and ensure that we and our children appreciate and breathe in a serene environment.

 

Additional Links & Resources:

51 Facts about Deforestation – A Must Read!

Frei’s full article about Deforestation

 

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-Written by: Prabal S.