Deforestation in the Amazon can affect rainfall in places as far away as Texas. Photo by Katja Schulz/Flickr
Healthy forests are critical to providing clean water. Forests can positively impact the quantity, quality and filtration costs associated with a city’s water, sometimes even reducing the need for costly concrete and steel infrastructure.
The world’s major watersheds lost 6% of their tree cover on average from 2000–2014. Today, about 31% of the world’s watershed area is covered by forests. Deforestation in these watersheds, often caused by commodity and agricultural production, can contaminate water, fuel floods and drought, and lead to higher water treatment costs.
It’s fitting that the International Day of Forests (on March 21) and World Water Day (on March 22) fall next to each other, as the health of these important resources often go hand-in-hand. To celebrate this year, let’s look at just how big of a role forests play in providing clean water: 1. The Quality of Water Erosion—when rainfall, runoff or wind detach soil particles—is a significant problem that affects both water quality and quantity. Healthy forests act as a filter to keep pollution out of water. Strong roots anchor soil against erosion and […]