New methods are being developed to farm more food crops on less farm land, such as high-yield hybrid crops, greenhouse, autonomous building gardens, and hydroponics. The reduced farm land is then dependent on massive chemical inputs to maintain necessary yields. In cyclic agriculture, cattle are grazed on farm land that is resting and rejuvenating. Cyclic agriculture actually increases the fertility of the soil. Selective over farming can also increase the nutrients by releasing such nutrients from the previously inert subsoil. The constant release of nutrients from the constant exposure of subsoil by slow and gentle erosion is a process that has been ongoing for billions of years.
Efforts to stop or slow deforestation have been attempted for many centuries because it has long been known that deforestation can cause environmental damage sufficient in some cases to cause societies to collapse. In Tonga, paramount rulers developed policies designed to prevent conflicts between short-term gains from converting forest to farmland and long-term problems forest loss would cause, whilst during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries in Tokugawa Japan the shoguns developed a highly sophisticated system of long-term planning to stop and even reverse deforestation of the preceding centuries through substituting timber by other products and more efficient use of land that had been farmed for many centuries. In sixteenth century Germany landowners also developed silviculture to deal with the problem of deforestation. However, these policies tend to be limited to environments with good rainfall, no dry season and very young soils (through volcanism or glaciation). This is because on older and less fertile soils trees grow too slowly for silviculture to be economic, whilst in areas with a strong dry season there is always a risk of forest fires destroying a tree crop before it matures.
Today, in the People's Republic of China, where large scale destruction of forests has occurred, the government has required that every able-bodied citizen between the ages of 11 and 60 plant three to five trees per year or do the equivalent amount of work in other forest services (no longer required today, but March 12 of every year in China is the Planting Holiday). The government claims that at least 1 billion trees have been planted in China every year since 1982. In western countries, increasing consumer demand for wood products that have been produced and harvested in a sustainable manner are causing forest landowners and forest industries to become increasingly accountable for their forest management and timber harvesting practices.
The Arbor Day Foundation's Rain Forest Rescue program is a charity that helps to prevent deforestation. The charity uses donated money to buy up and preserve rainforest land before the lumber companies can buy it. The Arbor Day Foundation then protects the land from deforestation. This also locks in the way of life of the primitive tribes living on the forest land. Organizations such as The Nature Conservancy, WWF, and Greenpeace also focus on preserving forest habitats.
The only country to come out of the Twentieth Century with more trees than it had at the start of the period was Israel.
By switching to synthetic building materials for one. Stop using wood and the people with trees will stop cutting them down.
We are also losing massive amounts of rain forest to agriculture. The forest floor offers a wonderfully nutrient rich soil and it can be used without fertilizers for several seasons as -is . The trees are ripped out and sold for timber and then replaced with mostly soybeans from what I've read. Food is a higher priority to people who don't understand we need the trees for the planet to live.
If this practice keeps up we'll all die from oxygen deprivation but our stomachs will be full. Well WE won't die from it, but several generations down the road will have a hard time taking a deep breath.
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