How are forests useful to us? They are precious natural resources that help in balancing the ecological system. Uses of forest in human life have proven effective in different segments of life. There are many forests spread across the world with different types of trees, plants and wildlife. Some are so unique and rare that they have been facing habitat loss due to deforestation and industrialization. Importance of forest resources include prevention of global warming, soil erosion, maintaining water cycle on earth and maintaining oxygen and temperature of the atmosphere. Here we shall be looking into the importance of forest in human life and the uses of forest resources in points.
Importance of Forest in our life – Forest and its uses:
1. Forests Provide Shelter for Living Organisms Around the World:
More than 100 million people depend on forest for shelter/ home by using its resources. Not just humans, but endless number of animals, birds, fishes and insects live in forests. There are certain animals that live on certain forests only, which is why some forests are restricted for tourist access.
2. Forests Prevent Soil Erosion:
Soil erosion occurs naturally with the impact of wind and water or due to irregular agricultural practise. This can be prevented with the help of trees and forests. Forests hold the soil particles strongly with their deep roots. This in turn stops the wind and water to carry away the most fertile layer of the soil, thereby preventing soil erosion.
3. Forests Help in Providing Oxygen:
Through the process of photosynthesis, forests help in absorbing the carbon dioxide and pump out oxygen, which is essential for existence of life. A single matured leafy tree is expected to produce a day’s supply of oxygen for approx. 2 to 10 people. If forests weren’t there to do this process, the air would have been too thin for us to breathe and we could not survive.
4. Importance of Forest Conservation in Preventing Global Warming:
Another importance of forest ecosystem is that it helps to prevent global warming. If you would have noticed, you might know that the climate has changed drastically in these recent years. Deforestation has led to global warming. It adds more carbon and other pollutants to the air. Carbon contributes to global warming. But if forests are preserved and conserved, we can prevent global warming to a large extent.
5. Forests Help in Maintaining Healthy Water Cycle:
Another topic on importance of forest in our life is about maintaining water cycle on earth. Plants absorb water through their roots. They also absorb the rain water that flows through the branches and trunks to the soil. The process of condensation and precipitation leads to rainfall. All these processes together form the water cycle.
6. Forest Helps to Keep The Surrounding Cool:
How are forests useful to man? Forests help in providing shade and shelter to many living bodies. Trees help to absorb the sunlight and thus reduce the heat. As forests keep excess carbon from heating the air, it releases water vapour that helps our bodies to handle high temperatures and humidity more comfortably.
7. Forests Help to Create Natural Water Source:
Forests help to capture the rain and other types of moisture through its branches and leaves. It helps water to naturally find its way to larger bodies of water like lakes and rivers. This keeps the water sources full for fish to live, thereby preventing floods.
8. Forests Act As a Rich Source of Fuel Wood:
What are the uses of forest? The main product of forest is the wood, which acts as an important source of energy for heating and cooking. For the rural people, wood plays a crucial role in their day to day living. Wood is also converted to charcoal and used for cooking in many households.
9. Fencing with The Help of Forest Trees:
Fences made out of trees and shrubs last long and are cheap to maintain. They give protection for humans from animal attacks. Certain shrubs have thorns which help to protect the area from unwanted access. People living nearby forests use thorny fences to get protected from elephant, tiger and other wild animal attacks.
10. Forests Improve the Quality of Soil:
Some tree species have the ability to return nitrogen to the soil through root decomposition or fallen leaves. These trees help in increasing nitrogen content in the soil which thereby helps to improve the soil quality. Only then can plants grow well even in poor climate.
11. Medicinal Use of Forests:
Our medical industry has grown so large by using the products of forests for medicinal purposes. Forests are a rich source of medicine. The trees, barks, leaves, flowers and stems are used in making various medicines that can heal many health problems. In India, Ayurvedic medicine uses trees and their parts for making natural medicines.
12. Forests Help to Purify The Air:
Another use of forest is that it helps to purify the air we breathe. Yes, forests act as a natural air purifier by absorbing the pollutants, chemicals, gases, odours and other toxic components from the air, filter and release fresh and clean air. Forests absorb the air toxicities on their bark and leaves.
13. Forest Helps to Provide Food:
There are many fruit trees that exist in forests for feeding the living organisms that depend on it. Thousands of fruit trees are there in the forest which not just can be eaten by humans, but also by animals and birds. The main source of food for birds is the fruits that trees provide. Also, there are certain fruits which can be consumed by birds and animals not regarded safe for humans. This way the feeding needs of humans and animals are satisfied with the help of forests.
14. Forests Prevent Noise Pollution:
Do you know that trees can help in preventing sound pollution? If you would have noticed you will know that while living in a forest, you hardly get irritated by the noise and sound, while living in cities, you get disturbed by the sound horns of vehicles and other street fussiness. This is because the leaves and branches of trees absorb the sound waves.
15. Forests Promote Less Solar Radiation:
Thanks to the dense forests that act as a barrier and protect us from too much exposure to ultraviolet rays. Although little exposure to the sun is good for our health, too much exposed to UV rays can cause health conditions. As forests provide shade and make the surroundings cool, it helps to weaken the solar radiation.
16. Economic Stability with Forests:
If we see the economic importance of forests, there are many industries that sustain with the help of forests. Many jobs and would have been lost if there were no forests. The forest products like wood, leaves and bark are used in many industries for making many things. Some of the industries that are benefited with forests include paper industry, timber, glue, pharmaceuticals and many more.
17. Forests Bring Rainfall:
As forests can cool down the atmosphere, the clouds get cooled and convert to rainwater. So one can see experience heavy rainfall in the areas nearby forests. Forests can also slow down the monsoon winds and let the clouds move slower over the land. They help to cool the temperature that helps in converting water vapour in the clouds to water droplets. This is why you don’t see rain in desserts.
18. Forests Prevent Natural Calamities:
Natural disasters like floods, cyclonic winds, hurricanes, Tsunami and heavy rainfall have caused several losses to both lives and properties. But with the presence of dense forests, the effects of disasters can be minimized. Healthy forests help in preventing global warming, thereby promoting the timely change of seasons.
19. Forests for Tourism:
We all love to go for an adventurous ride on a thick, dense forest for trekking or exploring – isn’t it? The happiness is beyond words when we can see animals and birds freely wandering around. Nowadays many forests have been used as a tourist spot. In a way this has created nature awareness among the people but also, has exploited the peace and privacy of animals living inside the forest.
20. Forest Improves Mental Well Being:
Our mental health and imagination awakens when we are in the middle of the forest. This is because the visual and mental stimulation that the forest provides boosts our imagination and creativity. In a way, people who tend to be in the wilds will have more inner peace and calmness than people who live in cities and away from forests. In short, forests create a positive vibe.
21. Forests Increase The Property Value:
When it comes to real estate business, forests play a vital role in generating business. There are so many plants and trees that are created by forests. Having a property nearby forests can increase the property value because of its aesthetic value and more favourable weather conditions.
22. Forests Provide Essential Oils:
Another use of forests is that it provides essential oils for healthy well being. Tropical grasses like lemon garss, khus, citronella are rich source of essential oils, which are abundantly found in forests. Another commonly used essential oil in Indian households is the eucalyptus oil and sandalwood oil. These oils are also used for making cosmetics, soaps, makeup kind of stuff, creams, perfumes, pharmaceuticals and confectioneries.
23. Forests Provide Floss:
Although we know that forests are good in providing wood, there is another by-product that many trees in forests provide. One such product is the floss. Floss is nothing but a rough silk that can be used for making cotton wool, mattresses, pillows, clothes etc. Even though the numbers of trees producing silky floss has been reduced, the wool and silk industry can be seen flourishing.
24. Forests Help in Balancing The Ecological System:
One of the top 10 uses of forests is that it helps to balance the ecological system. The trees, plants and shrubs in the forests help in maintaining the temperature and oxygen level at atmosphere. They absorb the carbon dioxide and filter the unwanted toxins from the air and release pure and fresh oxygen. This way the oxygen and carbon dioxide cycle goes on and maintains a balance in nature.
25. Forests Keep Away Poisonous Bugs:
Most importance of forest is that keeping away poisonous bugs from human. The forest life cycle helps to control pests as certain animals feed on bugs that can put the lives of humans in danger. So forest helping a lot to human as well as animals.
Today, there are so much of forest videos and pictures that encourage conservation of forests due to global warming. Cutting a tree hardly takes a day, but letting them grow to a forest and preserving takes hundreds and thousands of years. Deforestation and industrialization has led to the habitat loss of many animals and birds that depend on forests for living. Preserving forests can keep our next generation healthy and safe from environmental hazards and serious health conditions.