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The Rainforest and their Importance.

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Introduction

The Rainforests As part of my geography coursework, I writing a piece on the rainforest, it's ecosystems and it's relevance to the world as a whole. I will produce a piece which is informative and helps to highlight the rainforest and I will demonstrate my knowledge and understanding of it's workings, and greater implications for the wider world. We are all familiar with the rainforests, but do we really understand them or have any real knowledge of them? These questions I will seek to answer in this piece of work. Rainforest form an integral part of the earth's biosphere, covering around 2% of the earth's surface and being present in every continent except Antarctica. A rainforest is a forest characterized by its extremely heavy rainfall (which is usually a mammoth 1750 to 2000mm each year!). These rainforests form two common subtypes; the temperate and the tropical rainforests. ...read more.

Middle

It is dark, warm and humid; and it is difficult for common plants and animals to survive in; so it is only really a habitat to specially adapted organisms. Just above the forest floor comes the shrub layer, it is very dark- covered by the canopy, but can provide a habitat to specially adapted plants which are usually small, but with large leaves so that they can catch as much of the minimal light which shines through as possible. Above this is comes the understorey. It is a lot darker than the layers above, but has a larger amount of sunlight than the layers beneath (though it still only claims a mediocre 5% of the forest's sunlight). It hosts quite a large array of lizards, snakes, wild cats and birds who have adapted to its environment, and there are plenty of insects to be found there, too. ...read more.

Conclusion

Everyday things which we consume come from the rainforests. Some of these include coffee, cocoa, hardwoods, rubber and latex. No doubt the rainforest is a huge source of income for Brazil and contributes a substantial amount to its Gross National Product. The plants of the rainforest also have great scientific and medicinal qualities. Indigenous peoples of the rainforest have utilized the health properties of the plants for thousands of years, and modern western medicine often originates in the rainforest. It is estimated that around 2,000 different plant species have anti-cancer properties, and indeed many of them are being used in anti-cancer treatment today. Less than 1% of rainforest plants have been tested for medicinal applications though- so who knows what answers the rainforest may hold for future medicine. It is impossible to overestimate the importance of the rainforest to both the whole world's geography and human society, and difficult to imagine just how different our lives would be without products derived from the rainforest. And in conclusion, I can't think of anything more vital to the earth's ecosystem than the rainforest. ...read more.

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