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Plant trees for the future

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Dear Editor:

Why plant trees? A simple and realistic way to touch the future.

If only the trees had been replaced 50-100-150 years ago, back when the majority of the original "old growth" forests were cut. Originally cleared for farming, cut for the mines, the railroads and the general growth of a nation. We now see the same thing happening elsewhere in the world's tropical rain forests.

Our "long range focus" must now emphasize the survival of our only planet's ecosystem as well as our own human needs as individuals, as a county and as a nation. Where are we without our Mother Earth? A world of nations without a world!

A "simple answer" to mankind's most serious future (not too distant future) problem -- the greenhouse effect?

There are no "simple answers" to this very complex problem of the interplay of man on the environment!

In layman's terms the "effect" is caused by the ever increasing amount of carbon dioxide being added to the atmosphere. This is because of continued use of fossil fuels which release carbon elements into the atmosphere and the radical loss of the tropical rain forests and of forests in general.

Forests help protect valuable watershed areas. Water is and will be a major issue in the future. Forests stabilize top soils. Forests are a natural snow fence holding snow long enough to let moisture soak in. Forests provide habitat for other living creatures, big and small.

Sadly the biggest motivator in the future may be money. What is the environment actually worth, now as compared to 50 years from now dollars. I think trees are a good buy today and even more so in the future. Protect and wisely manage the forests we have left. "Old growth" forests are the last natural link to the origin of life and should be respected as such.

Why plant trees? If you plant a tree and your neighbor plants a tree, we are two trees toward a forest. Think about it and the thought will grow. It will grow like the forest.

Plant now for the future, yours and your children's.

Don Gerd
Paonia

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