Top 5 facts about deforestation
1) A lot of football fields
130,000 square kilometers of forests are cut down or burned every year - equivalent to 3 times the area of Denmark. This is equal to clearing a football field every 1.4 seconds.
2) The reason: everyday products
The main reasons for the loss of forests are production of timber, making room for farming cattle, soy and palm oil. Clearing forests for palm oil plantations is a growing problem. Palm oil is used to produce bio-fuels and cosmetics.
3) Main climate factor
The clearing of forests is a big contributor to global climate change. About 20 percent of the world's greenhouse gas emissions comes from the clearing of tropical forests.
4) We could be approaching a tipping point
In the Amazon, the loss of a critical mass of rain forest could trigger further dieback moving the forest into a vicious circle of self re-inforcing destruction.
5) What to do?
It is possible to buy forest-friendly products, but it's not always easy tell them apart from those that are not. The Forest Disclosure and the Forest Stewardship Council are working to make it easier. Look for products with their labels!