Industrial Ancient Forest Logging — Both Legal and Illegal — Primary Preventable Cause of Climate Change

An end to primary ancient rainforest loggingIt is very encouraging to see a high-profile U.S. politician — former US Democratic presidential candidate Senator John Kerry — proposing serious legislation to address illegal logging [search] in Asia, Africa and Latin America. Destruction and diminishment of primary and old-growth natural forest habitats [search] is responsible for about one quarter of human caused greenhouse gas emissions [search]. There is a booming and out of control illegal logging industry preying upon these life-giving ecosystems and they must be stopped if humanity and the Earth are to have a chance. The proposed “Combat Illegal Logging Act” is a much needed first step to stop this ecological evil.
However it is disappointing that “legal” clearing and selective first time logging of primary ancient forests is given a pass. There is little or no difference in ecological impact between first time legal and illegal ancient forest logging. An evolutionarily distinct, millions of year old ancient forest does not differentiate much between being industrially dismantled legally or illegally, or for that matter between being totally deforested or heavily commercially selectively logged. In either case what was once an ancient forest is no longer, and in both cases massive carbon release happens immediately, while future ability to function as a carbon sink is diminished if not destroyed.
To certify that “legal” ancient forest dismemberment is somehow OK while illegal is not disingenuously and falsely suggests there is a sizeable difference in impacts upon climate, biodiversity and other ecosystem services. There is not. This is why EcoInternet campaigns tirelessly to End Ancient Forest Logging — even targeting for protest prime ancient forest logging apologists Greenpeace and WWF [alert]. It is abundantly clear that even FSC certification is no guarantee of ecological sustainability or legality of ancient forest logging.
Global ecological sustainability depends critically upon maintaining large, intact, contiguous, natural, non-industrially managed ecological reserves to power the biosphere. This is of course very politically problematic, but to survive as a species and a biologically complex Earth; finding the right policy combination of local, community based small-scale eco-forestry management [search] and strict protection with payments for avoided deforestation [search] and industrial diminishment must be actively sought. This is not an opinion. It is ecological fact based upon findings of ecological, global change and conservation biology sciences.

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10 Responses

  1. Logan says:

    I love the environment and hate to see it abused but who is to say that the climate we have now is the perfect climate? THe fact that the climate is changing is no new information. Before i buy into this I need to know why how the earth is now is how it is supposed to be. To think it is perfect now is quite egotistical and close minded.

  2. yes – continuing destruction and damaging of Earth destroys life's wherewithal to maintain itself. Just ruination of the aesthetic enjoyment crushes humans and disrupts in various ways, other lifeforms' existence.

  3. Daniela Baer says:

    Everybody has to understand that we have only this one single earth – there's no creating a second one once we have destroyed this one! That applies to everything from the climate to the nature and all animals and human beings! And if we intentionally destroy our climate, we automatically destroy ourselves as well!!

  4. Barbara Liebowitz says:

    I love the rain forrests and don't want to lose any of it.save the rain forrests save the animals no9 place to run to

  5. ccrp says:

    Maybe this a little bit off-topic, but we would like to inform to the part research community that is working on Climate Change issues, that there are job opportunities open on the Basque Cuntry Climate Change Research Centre in the north of Spain.
    We are lloking for a Scientific Director and Senior Research Managers on Integrated Modelling, Mitigation and Impacts. The profile of a good candidate can be from economists to physics or computer scientist.
    Please visit http://www.ikerbasque.net/climatechange for more information and share the this info with whoever might be interested, please.
    Thank you very much.

  6. Jonathan Terry says:

    I agree.
    Here is an extract from an article I wrote.
    “Currently 10% of the worlds forest estate is managed under some form of certification scheme. Consumers can contribute to the effectiveness of these schemes by purchasing products from certified forests but more effective conservation can be delivered through legislation. A global moratorium on deforestation might be sought. This requires the cooperation of nations reliant upon deforestation as a means of generating wealth to improve their economic status. To mitigate the opportunity costs of conserving forests developed nations may also be required to cooperate by investing in developing nations. In the absence of global agreement, individual nations can contribute to forest conservation by banning the importation of forest products from those which pursue policies of deforestation.”

  7. James says:

    Just wanted to thank the folks here for the great work they are doing. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. Jim

  8. prcario says:

    i suggest you suggest to readers to contact Senator Kerry,urging him to up -grade his statement to putting old growth forests in the forefront, as they contain the seeds to environmental rehabiliation. The logging process itself forever changes the forest enviroment, claiming soil and species that are essential to our planet's survival. I have witnessed this first hand having been a resident in eureka ca., redwood forest central
    thank you

  9. Sisi says:

    yes – continuing destruction and damaging of Earth destroys life's wherewithal to maintain itself. Just ruination of the aesthetic enjoyment crushes humans and disrupts in various ways, other lifeforms' existence.

  10. Mike Jewett says:

    Thanks, and keep it up!

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