The Fate of Trees: How Climate Change May Alter Forests Worldwide

By the end of the century, the woodlands of the Southwest will likely be reduced to weeds and shrubs. And scientists worry that the rest of the planet may see similar effects

Source: www.rollingstone.com

GR:  Continued harvest (logging and livestock grazing)  will work with wildfires to remove long-lived species.  This is already visible in arid regions.

Conservationists v chainsaws: the RSPB’s battle to save an Indonesian rainforest

Colm O’Molloy, Guardian:  “In 2007 an RSPB-led group bought up a series of logged-out Indonesian forests to bring them back from the brink.

“Over time, Harapan aims to become the leading centre of knowledge on how to bring damaged forest ecosystems back to health. Tropical rainforests develop over thousands of years. It is not yet known how long it takes to fully restore a damaged rainforest to health, or if it is possible at all.

“There is little doubt that the forests that make up Harapan would have been completely destroyed by now was it not for the efforts of the RSPB and its partners to protect and restore them.

“Despite ongoing losses to encroachment, Harapan still has a relatively large percentage of forest cover within its boundaries. Much of the surrounding forests have been completely decimated and replaced by palm plantations.”

Source: www.theguardian.com

Tell Congress to Protect Tiger Habitat

World Wildlife Fund:  “Forests are being destroyed and degraded at alarming rates—equivalent to 36 football fields every minute.

“One major driver of forest loss and degradation is illegal logging, which includes the harvesting, transporting, processing, buying or selling of timber in violation of national laws. As the world’s largest consumer of forest products, Americans play a key role in deterring illegally sourced timber and protecting important habitats for wild tigers.

“In 2008, Congress recognized the threat of deforestation to wildlife and people by amending the Lacey Act of 1900 to prohibit illegal timber and timber products from entering the US market. It’s critical that we implement the Lacey amendments to the fullest extent possible in order to realize the benefits they can have for forests and tigers around the globe” (World Wildlife Fund).

Go here to sign the letter: support.worldwildlife.org

This is one of those cases where winning doesn’t get you very much.  What must we do?  We have to keep pushing our tired bureaucracy to get the job done!

Forests for the future: Kenya’s carbon credit scheme

“When 61-year old Mercy Joshua was young, the vast forests of southeastern Kenya teemed with wildlife, but decades of unchecked deforestation by locals have devastated the land. She watched forests dwindle and rivers dry up across her homeland of Kasigau—a semi-arid savanna grassland dotted with shrubs, woodland and small rugged hills—as people cut down the trees to scratch a living by selling them for firewood. But now, after decades of degradation, a local project has found a way to preserve the forests and support the community by getting international companies to pay to plant trees.”

“We were losing everything, but thanks to the project we have learnt even how to live with the wild animals,” Joshua, a mother of four, told AFP.

“These days, we don’t cut down trees… they are our friends,” she added.

“The project has breathed new life into Kasigau, a 500,000 acre (200,000 hectare) dryland forest 330 kilometres (205 miles) southeast of the capital Nairobi that connects the two halves of Kenya’s renowned Tsavo national park.

“She watched forests dwindle and rivers dry up across her homeland of Kasigau—a semi-arid savanna grassland dotted with shrubs, woodland and small rugged hills—as people cut down the trees to scratch a living by selling them for firewood.

“But now, after decades of degradation, a local project has found a way to preserve the forests and support the community by getting international companies to pay to plant trees.

“We were losing everything, but thanks to the project we have learnt even how to live with the wild animals,” Joshua, a mother of four, told AFP.

“These days, we don’t cut down trees… they are our friends,” she added.

“The project has breathed new life into Kasigau, a 500,000 acre (200,000 hectare) dryland forest 330 kilometres (205 miles) southeast of the capital Nairobi that connects the two halves of Kenya’s renowned Tsavo national park.

“Founded in 2009, it is part of a UN-backed carbon credit scheme aimed at stopping 54 million tonnes of carbon dioxide being released into the atmosphere over the next 30 years, equivalent to 1.2 million tonnes a year.”

Continue Reading: phys.org

GR:  These programs can have short-term benefits.  But nothing is sustainable when population continues to grow.

Following ‘Rim Fire,’ what should be done with the trees left behind?

BY Xander Landen  August 3, 2014 at 4:24 PM EDT

“A year after a California wildfire known as the “Rim Fire” burnt through over 250,000 acres of Sierra Nevada forests, environmentalists and loggers are debating what to do with the blackened woodland it left behind. The timber industry believes that chopping down and selling the trees that remain will not only restore Sierra Nevada forestland, but also create jobs.”

Source: www.pbs.org

Read more.

GR:  Don’t believe everything the timber industry says.  Logging healthy forests destroys soil microorganisms and reduces forest diversity.  Logging burned forests is even more destructive.  Access roads and equipment movements promote erosion, introduce weeds, damage surviving undergrowth, and crush the new tree seedlings that would replace the original forest.  Logging these fragile environments reduces watershed values and slows recovery.  Only an agency such as the logging industry controlled U. S. Forest Service would approve logging a burned forest.

Tree growth never slows

Idea debunked that young trees have the edge on their older siblings in carbon accumulation. by Jeff Tollefson   Native forest in Ancares Mountains, NW of Iberian Peninsula. Rubén Portas Copyr…

See on 4thenaturesake.wordpress.com