How fast are the world's rainforests being destroyed?


Quick Answer

Experts estimate that approximately 80,000 acres of the world's rainforests are destroyed per day, while another 80,000 acres are irrecoverably harmed each day. Experts also estimate that 135 species of various plants, animals and insects are lost per day, totaling 50,000 species per year, according to Scientific American.

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Full Answer

Rainforests are threatened by clear-cutting for timber and ranching, as well as mining. Seventy percent of the medicinal plants that the National Cancer Institute identifies as helpful in treating cancer are only found in the world's rainforests, according to The Nature Conservancy. At the current rate of deforestation, approximately 10 percent of existing tropical species are estimated to be lost per decade.

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