Strong Link Between Land Clearance and Climate Change Found in Queensland
Major new research from Queensland, Australia “has found a direct link between land-clearing and climate change,” [ark] and that land clearing triggers hotter droughts [ark]. Areas throughout southern Queensland cleared of native vegetation were found to have lost 12 percent of their summer rainfall and to have experienced an average 2C rise in temperatures. The study found that land clearing was just as significant in terms of climate change [search] as greenhouse gas production from fossil fuels.
Should these findings hold up and are found to be generalized throughout Australia and other areas globally clearing remaining natural vegetation, it would suggest a major revision in climate change policy-making is due. It is not enough to just focus upon greenhouse gas emissions, but maintaining natural vegetation through preservation, conservation and restoration may be an equally important policy response if global heating is to stopped.
These scientific findings further bolster the unity of being and the ecological intuition that we are not just undergoing a climate change crisis; but rather a series of crises that also includes water shortages, habitat loss, ocean decline, persistent toxics and others; that are each intimately connected and reinforcing. Together these crises undermine the Earth's sustainability, threatening it and humanity with global ecological collapse.
A report author stated: “The scientists found that past clearing of native vegetation in Queensland and other states has contributed to higher temperatures, decreased rainfall and more intense droughts during El Nino periods… They found native vegetation moderates the intensity of climate fluctuations and reflects more solar radiation back to space than broadacre crops, keeping the temperature lower.”