GREEN CAMEROON ON CLIMATE CHANGE AND GLOBAL WARMING
In recent years climate change has become the talk of the day at international and national levels. Without having a proper understanding of what climate change is all about one could have a misconception of the topic. Therefore climate change can thus be defined as a prolonged important change in the earth’s weather conditions such as temperature, rainfall patterns and wind. Therefore climate change solely has to do with the shift in worldwide weather conditions associated with an increase in global average temperatures. This increase in temperatures is what is specifically termed global warming.
Records state that there has been a drastic increase in temperatures from the preindustrial average period. So today the world is focusing on keeping temperatures from increasing more than two degrees above the preindustrial average. As already stated that climate change is a shift in the world’s weather conditions, these variations have resulted in some negative effects among which are,
- Shortage in food supply all over the world due to poor farm output.
- Floods and droughts which occur as a result of excess rains and sunshine respectively.
- Bush fires as a result of overheating leading to destruction of plants and animals
- Sea rise due to melting of ice poles.
- Climate refugees as people are being displaced because of rising sea levels and other extreme weather conditions.
With these devastating effects individuals and organisations are putting efforts daily to see that these variations are being managed and their effects reduced. But we cannot talk about managing the variations in the weather condition without fully understanding the causes of these variations.
Man is the primary cause of climate change!!! So it is said by many scientists, these arguments explains that though there be some natural phenomena that can affect climate, climate scientist say that effects of global warming and climate change experiences are the result of human activities. Research say that life on earth is dependent on an atmospheric “greenhouse” that is a layer of gases primarily water vapour that traps heat from the sun as it is reflected back from the earth. The greenhouse gases include carbon dioxide, methane, and Nitrous oxide. Human activity I currently generating an excess of long lived greenhouse gases that unlike water vapour don’t dissipate in response to temperature increase resulting in a continuing build-up of heat.
Following our topic which is how “tree planting a fight against global warming and climate change”. We will be laying emphasis on the forest and the role it plays in climate change mitigation. The forest plays a very important role in climate change mitigation as the forest is responsible for taking up the carbon dioxide. The cutting down of trees contributes greatly to climate change through the release of carbon dioxide. So with this knowledge that carbon dioxide is one of the greenhouse gases that contributes greatly to the global warming, one would readily want to get rid of as much quantity of carbon dioxide as possible. The world’s population is fast increasing and man will keep sending out carbon dioxide as a by-product of respiration not only man but all other animals. So we need to take advantage of the fact that trees take in carbon dioxide and get rid of it by planting more trees.
But in planting a tree one must take into considerations some vital aspects such as; The soil type: there is a very close relationship between trees and the soils they grow in. the soils are composed of water, nitrogen and other minerals that the tree needs to grow. So the soil types for specific tree species must be chosen with a lot of care. Soils vary in texture, acidity, alkalinity, and mineral content. These variations in soil types are brought about by; geology, topography and weather conditions. Below is a classification of soils based on these variations.
- Clay soils: which are full of minerals. These soils are fertile but quickly gets cold and water logged in winter.
- Silt soils: just like the clay soils silt is fertile, holds water and is easy to compact except that silt soils have a silky consistency.
- Sandy soils: this has much larger mineral grains than clay.it is warmer than the clay and also free draining. Sandy soils are low in nutrients, dry quickly and are also very acidic.
- Peat soils: these are full of dark organic matter, peat soils hold a lot of water
- Loam soils: this is a combination of elements of silt, clay and sandy soils. These are the world’s best soils. They are moist, fertile and drain well.
With these soil classifications, there are two main classes of soils that will be looked at. These will give a guide on the type of trees that should be grown on which soil type.
- Acid soils: soils with pH value below 7 indicate that the soil is acidic. These kind of soils originate from a lot of organic matter break down.
- Alkaline soils: these have pH above 7 and are rich in significant quantities of chalk or limestone. Adding organic matter on these soils will help balance the soil with time.
With this knowledge of soils here are some examples of tree that will grow best on soils based on their pH level.
|Plants that will strive best on acid soils||Plants that will strive best on alkaline soils|
|Pinus strobus||Cladrastis kentukea|
|Sorbus aucuparia||Tilia spp|
|Stewartia ovate||Ostrya virginiana|
|Cornus florida||Eucommia ulmoides|
|Fagus grandifolia||Ulmus spp|
Table of tree classification based on soil Ph.
Having this knowledge, it is important that any individual or organisation engaging in tree planting to contribute towards climate change mitigation takes into considerations the above listed factors. These will give an assurance on the life span of the trees and the contribution the tree will bring to the fight against climate change and global warming.