A new paper released by scientists has given a warning about tree extinctions. They warn that the extinction of tree species would cause a catastrophe for people, our economy, and our planet. Let’s look at the implications of tree extinctions and the actions that are urgently needed .
Why Tree Extinctions Will Result in Catastrophe
The Importance of Trees
We know that trees are vital to our planet’s ecosystems. Here are just some of the benefits of trees:
- Provide socio-economic benefits
- Support plants and animals
- Play a crucial role in eco-systems
Find out more about the importance of forests.
Global Tree Assessment
According to a new paper released by scientists entitled Scientists' Warning to Humanity on Tree Extinctions, the evidence from the Global Tree Assessment suggests that a third of tree species are now threatened with extinction.
Currently, there are thought to be approximately 58,000 tree species throughout the world – although in reality the number may be higher. The Global Tree Assessment continually adds more species as and when they’re discovered.
According to results to date, 17,510 tree species are believed to be threatened with extinction, which equates to 29.9% of all species. An additional 142 trees are believed to be extinct, or extinct in the wild.
The highest number of threatened trees are located in the tropics.
The Impact of Tree Extinctions
The paper describes how tree extinctions will have disastrous consequences.
Impact on People
Trees provide many benefits to people (both directly and indirectly), including:
All of these benefits and many more would be greatly impacted by tree extinctions. The extinction of species could rest in, amongst other things, declining living standards and poverty.
There are a range of ecological values that will be affected, including:
- Climate regulation
- Carbon storage
- Soil protection
- Water production
- Habitat for a huge variety of animal species and fungi
It’s suggested that when tree extinctions occur, it has a cascade effect, causing other linked species to also become extinct. This can result in a rapid collapse of networks, which can then lead to the collapse of an entire ecosystem.
Actions to Prevent Tree Extinctions
Tree Conservation and Restoration of Native Populations
There must be more done to conserve and protect tree species to ensure they don’t go extinct. As a partner with Eden Reforestation Projects, we fund the planting of 10 trees for every item sold at BeCause. We’re proud to be a part of the replanting of thousands of trees across the globe.
Address Threats to Tree Species
Threats to various tree species include:
- Agricultural expansion
- Illegal logging
- Invasive species and diseases
- Climate change and severe weather
Action needs to be taken against these threats, including ensuring trees are preserved in agricultural areas, ensuring timber production is carried out sustainably, researching in greater detail the threats of diseases, and illegal logging needs to be stopped.
A Global Effort
It’s impossible to achieve what needs to be achieved if people/businesses/governments work in isolation. In order to make real change and prevent more tree species from becoming extinct, there needs to be a global effort.
If scientists are warning that tree extinctions will result in catastrophe, the time to act is certainly now.
Together we can make a difference. Help us to meet our goal of funding the planting of 1 million trees by the end of 2023 – shop now.