In analyzing the facts objectively, the situation of the forests in Ecuador is extremely worrying. The environmental, social and economic causes of deforestation are not yet taken into account against the financial benefits...
Ecuador has conflicting records: It is the country with one of the highest rates of biodiversity in the world, but also the highest rate of deforestation in South America with 1.7% to 2.4% per year depending on sources.
Since 1990, a quarter of its forests have disappeared!
Now, there are multiple causes.
If agriculture and livestock have a great responsibility, the oil industry through its direct impact on the territory has destroyed over 1.5 million hectares of rainforest. More insidiously, the opening of several hundred kilometers of access roads to pits sites facilitates the installation of settlers making illegal deforestation. New farms are so installed along these new lines in the middle of the Amazon jungle...
Few alternatives left to the indigenous (native forest) and settlers (Andes displaced populations in the Amazon for new land) to meet their needs. The long-term conservation of the forest gives way to a short-term profitability.
The destruction of forests is also associated with the direct use of timber exported worldwide, with mining industry and construction of hydroelectric dams.
The supply of wood for heating and cooking is anecdotal against other industrial exploitation threat.
Another growing problem is that of biofuels. Paradoxically originally planned to limit carbon emissions in the atmosphere, the effects on production are even more disastrous because it leads to massive deforestation. For example, forests are replaced by large plantations of sugar cane for bioethanol production. Total contradiction!
Another important cause of deforestation, but not yet developed in Ecuador: mass culture for animal feed... Brazil and Argentina are the most prominent. Soy is a symptomatic example: benefiting the crisis of "mad cow" and the excessive consumption of meat (compared to previous generations), the areas of culture have been exploited to feed livestock in Europe and Asia at the expense of forests... The impacts are unfortunately not only ecological but also social, for the unbalanced distribution of land.
The massive deforestation problem is that the forest can not easily return to its original state. Ecosystems are so upset they fail to regenerate. In the Amazon, the soil is poor, acidic and fragile. The resurgence of a tree depends on the supply of organic matter caused by the death of others. The delays can be very long when the forest is impacted.
In the worst cases, the primary forest can become in a few years as a desert...
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