Forest Love: Do You Love Your Children???? Then You Should Love The Forest
By: Arunava Das, Green Peace India
(A promotionary blog for GreenPeace Campaign: Forest Love highlighting the Illegal Timber Business in the European Continent)
The Request to “Saviour of Forests” Blogspot from Green Peace:
This is the first email of its kind for us. Remember that time you told us you have a blog or webpage where you can spread the word about Greenpeace campaigns? Well, this email is all about doing exactly that!
31 JULY 2008: Check out our latest campaign and video:
Blog this within the next few hours - and help us get this video to the top of the video viral charts!
On September 10, the EU will be voting on a vital law against illegal logging. ForestLove is a controversial campaign to push the EU's vote in the right direction.
This summer we want people to take photos and video of themselves expressing love amongst the trees.
After the deadline of August 31, Greenpeace will edit this material into a collaborative video that will show the EU commissioners just how much everyone loves the forests...
So get blogging to stop the logging!
Read about our campaign
Grab the embedding code for the video page on YouTube
Spread the word on your blog or webpage!
(Do you tag your posts? Then please use this one today: greenpeacebuzz)
Can you do more?
Share the campaign on facebook
Tell us your promotion ideas (Greenpeace Forum)
Thank you and good luck out there on the web!
Giona and the forests campaign!!
A link to the Forest Love Video:
The story behind the plot: The European Commission has delayed a vital vote on protecting forests from illegal logging till September. We want to make sure the commissioners don't forget about it during their summer holiday. We need you to help us make an extra impression before the September vote.
Forests are the lifeline for all activities on the planet. It supports a number of rare land ecosystems that balance the seasonal changes on the planet. The heavy the forests are, the denser and greener they are more will be the amount of rainfall in the areas covering the forests and more will be the flora and fauna type of these regions. Moreover, lost of forest cover results in ultimate climate change that can lead to varied types of after effects, like unseasonal and irregularities in rainfalls, rise in global temperature, rise in sea level and increase of intensities of cyclones that in turn cause huge losses in terms of economy and loss of lives and domestic livestocks. It also results in an onslaught on climate and the resultant change is known as Climate Change.
As the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) warns a warming of 0.2 degree Celsius can lead to a staggering rise of 8.6 degrees till the end of the century that can spell havoc as far as the Global Temperature is concerned. The scientific evidence is already evident in the fact that we are getting longer summers, rainfalls not at the right time, heavy rainfalls at unexpected quarters of the year resulting in flooding and loss of lives and government property, no rainfall in some dry parts of the country for a long time creating drought like situations, decreased irritability and poor production of soil, flooding in low lying areas due to increase in sea level. Already we have lost around 56 acres of Mangrove forests due to increase in sea level and also we are on the verge of loosing our cities on the coastal areas if this continues.
Forest also plays a crucial role to the village economy. Half of India’s population is in the villages and they solely depend upon the forest products. When there is forest loss, there will be loss of income for the scores of people who inhabit these villages.
Nearly 2,00,000 villages and 70 million tribals in India are dependent on the forests for their daily bread. As a result, people from the rural areas are forced to migrate to urban areas for feeding their families. In Economics, we call this as “Workforce Migration” that brings about a population burst to already overcrowded Indian cities that serve as lifeline to Indian Economy. Thus we can see that Climate Change is not only impacting the Forest Biodiversity hampering the crucial ecosystems (that serve as linkers between the food chain) but also affecting the economy of almost all countries including India.
Climate Change Projections:
Studies were carried out at the Indian Institute of Science (by Professors Ravindranath, Joshi and Sukumar), using the climate change projections from regional climate model of Hadley centre (HadRM3), obtained from Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology, and a global vegetation response model called BIOME (Biogeochemical Information Ordering Management Environment).
The impacts were assessed for the period around 2085 for two (high and moderate) greenhouse gas emission scenarios, with projections of carbon dioxide concentration in the atmosphere at 740 and 575 parts per million by 2085.
An assessment of the impact of climate change projections on forest ecosystems for the two greenhouse gas emission scenarios for 2085 showed that 68 per cent and 77 per cent of forested grid are likely to experience shifts in forest vegetation type.
In other words, there may not be a total replacement of one forest type by another under the projected climate change scenarios, due to differing climate tolerance of the various plant species in a forest. For example researchers at the Forest Research Institute, Dehradun and Kerala, India have given an interesting example:
• If the Montane grasslands of the Western Ghats are invaded by woody plants, including exotic weeds, the endemic Nilgiri Tahr may be threatened.
• Similarly, upward altitudinal migration of plants in the Himalayas could reduce the Alpine meadows and related vegetation, adversely impacting the habitats of several high-altitude mammals including wild sheep, goat, antelope and cattle.
• Further, increased precipitation in Northeastern India may lead to severe flooding of the Brahmaputra and place the wildlife of the Kaziranga National Park at risk.
Biodiversity of the existing forest types will not be totally replaced by the new forest type or species-mix under the changed climate due to complexities of climate tolerance of different species in a forest and the barriers to species migration.
Forest ecosystems are highly vulnerable to climate change. According to IPCC reports, that the unprecedented warming observed in the past few decades has already made an impact on forest ecosystems, such as, pole-ward and upward shift in ranges of plant, insect, bird and fish species. Further, plant flowering, bird arrival, migratory bird patterns, seasonal breeding patterns of animals like tigers, panthers, olive ridley turtles, as well as flowering plants have been observed to be occurring earlier than expected.
See for yourself how much forest cover is deforested for Palm Plantations to feed the DOVE Soap Industries with palm oil, a major component of Dove soaps.
Efforts And Planning To Reduce The Onslaught:
Changing climate requires dynamic forest planning and management strategies. There is a need to incorporate climate change concern in the long-term forest planning and policy making process. The traditional Working Plan approach of managing forests adopted by the Forest Departments, which is not adequate even in a situation of no climate impacts, may need to be improved and made dynamic to incorporate the climate impacts.
The Ministry of Environment and Forests as well as State Forest Departments do not have the luxury of waiting for a perfect understanding of the climate projections or the impacts on forest biodiversity and biomass production at micro level, to plan and implement adaptation practices and strategies. Many of the precautionary and win-win practices and strategies mentioned above could be evaluated and considered for implementation. Forest and biodiversity conservation, prevention of forest fragmentation and multi-species based afforestation are examples of such strategies.
Examples of forest policies, which may reduce the vulnerability of forest ecosystems to climate change, include preventing fragmentation of forests, forest conservation, enhancing the coverage under protected areas and linking them, large afforestation with multiple species to reduce pressure on natural forests, and involvement of local communities in forest conservation and management. India has a large afforestation programme of over one million hectares annually and also has a plan to bring a third of the geographic area under forest cover. These newly planted forests, particularly the long-rotation species such as teak, will be subjected to changing climate parameters. Thus, it is important to consider and incorporate adaptation practices even in the afforestation programme.