Q:

Why is the rain forest so important to the world?

A:

Quick Answer

Rain forests are important to the world because they provide a habitat for millions of species of organisms, they regulate the world's climate, they store nearly half of the world's rainwater and they contain plants that are used in modern medications. Rain forests also absorb massive amounts of carbon dioxide.

Continue Reading

Full Answer

Rain forests are important to the world for a variety of reasons, including the way they can regulate the world's climates and reduce the greenhouse effect. They absorb carbon dioxide and release oxygen.

Rain forests also act as pumps, pushing and pulling heat and moisture into the air and around the world. The forests pull in moisture as rain, which then evaporates into the atmosphere. Without rain forests, moisture does not fall in this predictable pattern and cannot cool rising temperatures. The rising temperatures result in drought and eventually the formation of deserts. For instance, experts believe that the drought just south of the Saharah Desert is directly caused by destruction of that continent's tropical forests. In fact, between 18 and 25 percent of greenhouse gas emissions are caused by deforestation.

Rain forests are also hotbeds for biodiversity, providing homes for millions of plant and animal species. Between 50 and 90 percent of all organisms can be found in rain forests. Furthermore, many of the plants found in rain forests are used in modern medicines and pharmaceuticals.

Learn more about Environmental Science

Related Questions

  • Q:

    How many rain forests are left in the world?

    A:

    A count of the number of rain forests left in the world is not available, but as of 2014, rain forests account for less than 2 percent of the Earth and are habitat for 50 percent of animals and plants. Several thousand years ago, rain forests covered about 12 percent of the Earth, or 6 million square miles. The largest continuous rain forest is near South America's Amazon river.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How many animal species live in the rainforest?

    A:

    The Rainforest Action Network indicates that about half of the world's animal species live in the rain forest. Although rainforests cover only about 6 percent of the Earth's surface, they are home to many animal species. However, some species are still unidentified, which makes it difficult to estimate the number of species living in the rain forest, but one scientist places the number between 20 million and 40 million.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is a tropical rainforest?

    A:

    A tropical rain forest is a forest that is located in a region that is warm year round with tall trees. On average, between 50 to 260 inches of rain falls in a tropical rain forest each year.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What are tropical rainforest landforms?

    A:

    Tropical rainforest landforms are areas that lie between the Tropic of Capricorn and the Tropic of Cancer, are covered in forest and experience a high level of rain. While many small tropical rainforests persist on Earth, the three primary tropical rainforest landforms occur in the Amazon basin of South America, equatorial Africa and the Southeast Asian peninsula and archipelago.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore