Planetary deforestation and desertification

(Ref. 709)
Problem Components
Policy issue area: World
Policy issue: Environment
Description: Huge areas of Earth's surface are severely damaged each year.
Symptoms: Tropical forests are shrinking at the rate of over 40,000 sq. miles each year; about 120,000 sq. miles of forests in industrial countries are damaged by air pollution or acid rain; 20,000 sq. miles of new deserts are forming annually.
Causes: Huge and growing population needing firewood and crop land in excess of availability; careless industrial and agricultural practices; wasteful use of energy sources.
Cost of problem: -
Solution Components
Resources: Governments of industrialized countries; universities and research institutes; world organizations.
Goal: Halt, and eventually reverse the deterioration of the Earth's surface.
Program area: World ecological development
Program-remedy: 1. Increased funding for, and more effective family planning programs
2. Massive programs for conserving soil and planting trees
3. Raising energy efficiency and developing renewable energy sources.
Program-prevent: Long-term policies and programs for sustainable growth of populations and economies.
Cost of program: -
Beneficiaries: Populations of the countries affected.

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