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Burgers, soy and deforestation

By Evelyn Kay, Year 7


We read about deforestation all the time. But what are the numbers, and what does this mean? And what has it got to do with burgers?!


Currently we cut down over 15 billion trees each year. The worlds rainforests have been reduced by half.


The main reason of continuing deforestation, which doubles that of the next three greatest cases combined, is beef production.


Brazil alone devotes 170 million hectares of its land, an area seven times the size of the United Kingdom, to cattle pasture. Most of that area was once rainforest!


The second reason is soy. Growing soy uses 131 million hectares, most of it in South America. Over 70% of this soy is used to feed livestock being raised for meat.


Thirdly, 21 million hectares of oil palm plantations, mostly in South East Asia. The forests that still remain are severely fragmented having been interested by roads, farms and plantations. In 70% of them, the edge of there tree cover is no more than a kilometre away at any point. Few deep, dark forests are left, meaning an enormous loss of habitat for wildlife.


This example and numerous others are why we as a generation should be working on fighting to stop these problems, such as these devastating impacts deforestation and many other issues are having on our home planet and environment.


Remember, we don’t have another Earth so let’s keep this one alive!





Image: By Roya Ann Miller on Unsplash.

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