Save the Trees…Save the Planet


Trees do not just offer wonderful scenery, but they offer life also; when they breathe, we breathe. It is true that trees do not produce all the oxygen available in our atmosphere, but they immensely help. Through the process of photosynthesis, a process that plants use to create glucose for their nourishment, oxygen is made. When human beings breathe, they inhale oxygen and exhale carbon dioxide. Plants do the exact opposite.

Trees absorb carbon dioxide from the air. They have the ability to miraculously transform, through the process of photosynthesis, molecules of water and carbon dioxide into glucose and also luckily for us, oxygen. A mature tree can offer approximately enough oxygen for eighteen people. In addition to helping human beings in getting rid of carbon dioxide, trees also free the air of other pollutant gases as nitrogen oxides, ammonia, sulfur dioxide and ozone. Due to pollution and the excessive amounts of carbon dioxide, the presence of trees becomes vital because they combat global warming.

Trees do not just help us through providing clean air; they also have an important role to play when it comes to the soil. Trees are capable of fighting soil erosion. Erosion means that the soil becomes depleted and that reduces crop production. Erosion happens when the soil is exposed, for example, to strong winds or water. The roots of trees help in binding soil and the leaves are strong enough to interrupt the powerful wind and water and prevent them from eroding the soil.

Surprisingly, trees also cool the climate. When the cooling effect of trees is mentioned, the idea that comes instantly to mind is that of people seeking shelter under a tree in a hot summer day to protect themselves from the heat of the Sun.

Fortunately, trees can do better than that. Trees draw water from the soil through its roots and then release the water and by releasing the water, they cool the atmosphere. This process is called transpiration, and in this process water is not released in its liquid form but is evaporated through the leaves. This provides cooling to the trees and to the surrounding environment. It is actually similar to sweating in human beings.

The vital role trees play in cleaning the atmosphere should encourage human beings to plant more trees so as to have more access to oxygen, reduce carbon dioxide and subsequently reduce the ugly effects of global warming. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Human beings destroy trees to build cities, factories or for other different reasons. Statistics reveal that up to 50% of the world’s tropical forests have been destroyed.

The protectors of our environment are being destroyed every day and if human beings are not careful, they will suffer their tremendous carelessness towards environment-friendly and pollution-fighting trees.


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SCIplanet is a bilingual edutainment science magazine published by the Bibliotheca Alexandrina Planetarium Science Center and developed by the Cultural Outreach Publications Unit ...
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