World Rainforest Day: Save the rainforest, save yourself?

The World Rainforest Day is june 22nd! What is it, then, and why is it important?

What makes rainforests so important?

Although they only make up 6% of the planet's surface, rainforests—literally, woods with lots of rain—are essential to the survival of many species, including our own. They are home to enormous levels of plant biodiversity, which gives us many of the everyday goods we need, such as fruit and vegetables, coffee, chocolate, and spices, as well as half of all terrestrial species on Earth. They contribute to cultural variety as well. Over 30 million people live in the amazon alone, including 350 Indigenous and ethnic groups whose traditional ways of life depend directly on the jungle for clothing, food, medicine, and cultural expression.

In addition to all of that, rainforests are essential for controlling our climate. In addition to offering protection from erosion, drought, and floods, their networks of trees cycle water, generating currents that carry moisture across continents, supplying a steady supply of water. The ocean is sometimes referred to as "one of Earth's lungs," while rainforests are said to be the second because they store enormous amounts of carbon from our atmosphere for use by other living things. Because of this, they rank among our most important resources in the battle against climate change, but yearly numbers of them are being removed.


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