Book repairs are often the last thing people think of when their favourite books become fragile. However, when we take a look at the impact that the paper industry has on the environment, book restoration quickly becomes the better option.
Rain forest depletion and how it affects animals
Rain forests provide a habitat for approximately 80% of the world’s animal and plant species.
Sadly, because of the resources that humans are able to obtain from these abundant forests, they are extremely vulnerable to deforestation.
Furthermore, there are several natural causes of deforestation which are equally devastating for the plant and animal life contained within the forests.
These dramatic changes in environment and loss of habitat are major causes for the endangerment and even extinction of some animals.
Deforestation greatly affects animals’ ability to simply survive, let alone thrive. This, all in the name of the insatiable obsession we humans have for convenience and pleasure.
The paper industry and our environment
Even in this digital age, we still depend largely on paper products. Often, we are unaware of how frequently we make use of products made from paper.
From till slips to tissues, sticky notes, newspapers, magazines and cereal boxes; all of these are made from paper.
The sad truth is that approximately 14% of deforestation is thanks to the production of paper. To put it into perspective, this equates to about 4.1 million hectares of forest every year. Let that sink in, just for a minute.
What causes rainforest depletion?
Unfortunately, there are several causes of deforestation:
- Logging operations are carried out in order to collect wood for construction as well as production of paper products
- Logging operations also require clearing of additional forest in order to create access for transport vehicles
- Forests are cut away to make space for urban development
- Locals as well as farmers cut down trees for firewood and building material
- Wild fires can destroy large areas of forests
- Overgrazing by livestock which prevents young trees from growing to maturity
- Forests are cut down to provide space for cattle ranches so as to meet the global demand for beef
- Clearing land for agriculture to provide food crops to feed the livestock farmed for the meat industry
- The paper industry which requires wood pulp to produce all the paper products used and consumed by humans on a daily basis
What are the effects?
To say the least, the effects are devastating. As mentioned before, loss of habitat makes animal species extremely vulnerable to extinction.
In addition, the forest serves as protection from both environmental and human impact. Without the forest, the animals are exposed to factors which cause unimaginable harm.
Deforestation also strips the inhabitants of their natural food sources, forcing them to move out into the urban world to find food. Wild animals in domestic environments are often killed or captured to avoid any potential danger which they may cause.
What does the environment say?
The overall environmental impact is enormous. The forest canopy provides crucial protection from the sun. With large areas of the canopy disappearing, the result is that the soil begins to dry up as well as vital water sources such as streams and rivers.
Without moisture, trees are unable to return water vapor to the atmosphere. The result is painfully obvious; less rainfall. And so, the cycle continues, leading the animals, the trees and ultimately humans down a perpetual path of irreversible destruction.
It’s no lie that this destructive cycle can eventually turn a dense, tropical jungle into a barren desert.
Furthermore, the forest provides temperature control by retaining heat during the night. The loss of trees can cause more dramatic variations in temperature which can be extremely harmful to many of the animal and plant species.
In addition, trees are the very reason we are alive. They produce oxygen for us to breathe and they remove carbon dioxide from the air which in turn reduces global warming.
Trees also store carbon dioxide – by cutting them down, we are releasing this harmful gas into the atmosphere. There are studies which show that up to 23% of man-made carbon dioxide emissions are due to deforestation.
The transport industry is responsible for 14% of carbon dioxide emissions, making deforestation more harmful to the environment than all the cars, trucks, buses and other vehicles in the world.
When their habitats, protection, water and food sources have been destroyed, animals automatically become vulnerable to poachers and hunters.
Forests which have been depleted are easily accessible to poachers and hunters, making animals who stay in the wild vulnerable to being hunted or poached until they reach extinction.
Furthermore, animals who choose to venture into the urban world are also hunted in order to keep crops and farmlands protected as well as to manage populations.
Bookbinders South Africa – Book binding, book repairs, book restoration
As we take a closer look at the impact that deforestation has on our planet as a whole, we can see that it is our responsibility to take immediate action.
There are many things that we can do on ground level to minimise our contribution to the destruction of our rainforests.
Book repairs are a great way to reduce the demand for paper production. Instead of replacing your treasured books, have them restored and repaired.
Bookbinders are skilled in the art of bookbinding and book restoration. We use products which are environmentally friendly and can restore your book to a brand-new condition.
For more information on our bookbinding and book repairs, contact us and let us fight together against climate change.