Tuesday, 15 Jul, 2008 Environment

Forests to Be Destructed for Food


With the growing demand for food, biofuels and wood, deforestation is almost inevitable, the Rights and Resources Initiative report says.

According to the latest report, the 515 million hectares of extra land is needed by 2030 and only 200 million hectares is available now. The RRI report calls for reforming of land ownership in developing countries.

"Arguably, we are on the verge of a last great global land grab," said Andy White, co-author of the report called Seeing People through the Trees.

"It will mean more deforestation, more conflict, more carbon emissions, more climate change and less prosperity for everyone."

The cities analysis showed that the food demand will continue to grow and additional land needed to meet this demand may reach three billion hectares. Today nearly 1.4 billion hectares of arable land and about 3.4 billion hectares of pasture are available.

Scientists hope to find solution through the development of the new agricultural technologies such genetic engineering to increase crop harvest. However, little has changes so far and in some regions the climate changes caused yields to fall.

In spite of the fact, that destruction of the forests is needed to create extra land to solve the food crisis, this initiative will likely aggravate the situation with the climate change, such as the increased greenhouse gas emissions.

The RRI report calls for a new reform to prevent destruction of tropical forests and protect the property rights of native communities.

The food and fuel crisis will lead to land speculations in developing countries and unless the problem of the ownership is solved, the environmental changes and violent conflicts are expected.

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