Destruction of forests a big carbon problem

This statement would only be true if new trees maturing equalled old trees lost.

Destruction of forests a big carbon problem

In the Citizen printed Nov. 24 a letter from Peter Lake in which he proposed that there was no net affect on carbon levels in our environment from the release of carbon from forest fires, since new trees, when they mature, will sequester carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and maintain a balance.

This statement would only be true if new trees maturing equalled old trees lost. The reality is that the amount of carbon being released into the atmosphere from forest fires is accelerating, and 2015 was the worst year for which data has been published (the data only goes as far as 2015).

In 2016 we had the Fort McMurray fires and in 2017 we had the B.C. fires, which we were told at the time was the worst in recorded history in B.C. We therefore shouldn’t be surprised when the data for these years gets published, if the amounts of carbon released from forest fires sets new records in Canada.

Efforts to reduce the amount of carbon being released by the consumption of fossil fuels are worthy, but trivial when the results are overwhelmed by the accelerating destruction of the forests, some of which may be caused by changes to summer temperatures and length of droughts which are predicted to worsen.

People who believe that climate change is only caused by the burning of fossil fuels deny the broader vision of others.

Michael Walkley


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