Causes of deforestation in Spain - with VIDEO

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Forest fires have increased a lot in recent years, not only in Spain, but also in other nearby countries such as Portugal or France. These have contributed enormously to deforestation, a problem that can affect nearly 80% of the entire Spanish territory, but which also has many other causes.

Do you want to know them? In the following Green Ecologist article we will explain what the causes of deforestation in Spain.

What is deforestation

The deforestation is the process by which remove trees and plants from green areas, ending the vegetation and ending up making the soil useless. If we take into account the functions of forests on our planet, for example providing oxygen, deforestation is a serious threat to the health of the earth.

Is deforestation can be due to different causes natural, but above all as a consequence of human activity. Since the growth and evolution of a forest is a very slow process and deforestation can occur at great speed, it is essential to cut these causes of deforestation to prevent further loss of forests.

Below we explain the causes of deforestation so that you know where we have to act.

Causes of deforestation: human activity

The causes of deforestation can be natural or caused by humans, we will explain them to you below.

As many of the evils stalk the earth, deforestation can also be caused by human activity. In fact, this is usually the first cause of deforestation, on the other hand, it is also one of the few that can be avoided.

Globally, some of the main causes of deforestation is the slash or burn of millions of hectares to later sell the wood or convert those lands into farmland. However, this is usually more common in developing countries and does not happen in a remarkable way in Spain today, although it has been common throughout history. The same happens with the forests that are razed to turn them into grazing areas, which are more typical of other latitudes than in this area of the peninsula.

If there is a cause of deforestation in Spain, caused by man, and that really stands out, that is the construction and continuous expansion of urban areas. This is something that is linked to current economic and demographic movements. Rural areas are becoming depopulated and their population is moving towards the cities. There, there is not enough space and urban centers have to be built and expanded. Often times, these constructions are made on sites that were previously wooded areas, a soil that will be unusable. The same happens with the massive construction that has occurred in some coastal areas of Spain, which have largely destroyed the natural ecosystems that we could find.

Natural causes of deforestation in Spain

But not only human activity is behind the deforestation of Spanish lands, there are natural factors that also lead to it:

  • Plagues and diseases: pests in trees A famous example of this in Spain is the phylloxera plague, which took place in the 19th century and which wiped out a large part of the country's wine production.
  • Droughts: the chronic lack of water that a large part of the Spanish territory is suffering is causing deforestation and subsequent desertification of those lands where there is not enough water.
  • The forest fires: they are responsible for the loss of hundreds of hectares of forest each year. While it is true that many are due to the crimes of arsonists or human negligence, the reality is that many others are caused by the simple action of nature. Dry and neglected forests are the perfect fuel for a simple lightning strike to end in a great fire.

How to prevent deforestation in Spain

But recognizing and knowing the causes of deforestation is not enough to reverse this situation, it is necessary to find some solutions to avoid it. As in so many other aspects that affect the health of the planet, such as global warming or the deterioration of the ozone layer, it is urgent to reach a agreement as global as possible, which brings together all governments to take joint action. These measures should be aimed at two different goals:

  • Prevention: so that it does not happen in the future.
  • Repair: to correct the evil that has already been done.

But we cannot hide behind government inaction to shed our share of the blame, or our part in the solution. Personally we can do many gestures to prevent deforestation. A very clear example is in the excessive use of paper that we do. Today there are many alternatives to avoid having to spend so much raw material:

  • Computerize as much as possible, with pen drives or pdf.
  • Order invoices online.
  • Use recycled paper.
  • Recycle paper and cardboard.
  • Avoid consuming paper if it is not necessary.

Finally there are solutions that require the citizen action and government coordination. It is about keeping forests and green areas clean. This is the best possible way to prevent wildfires, many of them caused by bottles, glass, and other human waste. In addition, it is necessary to keep the weeds in our forests clean, since in the event of a forest fire they turn into fuel. This is precisely one of the causes that the current fires are much more devastating, since the forests that were previously controlled by grazing or agriculture, today grow uncontrollably.

In the following Green Ecologist article we explain the benefits of recycling paper.

If you want to read more articles similar to Causes of deforestation in Spain, we recommend that you enter our category of Other environment.

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