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Asked by Shivangi_2 2nd September 2008, 11:01 PM
Answered by Expert

Forests are one of our most important natural resources.

The large number and variety of trees and plants found in forests are not only a sight of beauty but also provide us with the all important oxygen gas that is required for the respiration of all aerobic organisms. Also these green autotrophs provide us with food through photosynthesis. They also absorb large amounts of carbon dioxide for this photosynthesis. CO2 is a green house gas as well as a major pollutant. So the absorption of this gas by the trees helps in cleaning up the environment to a great extent. The dense forests atmosphere acts as enormous sink for green house gases and it refreshes the gas balance. Forests cool air temperature by releasing water vapor into the air.

Trees also prevent soil erosion to a large extent. They anchor the soil and prevent the winds from blowing the surface soil away. Rivers and streams receive water that flows down from very steep mountain rocks; forests on these slopes restrict the speed which would otherwise produce floods. 
In addition the nutrition of soil in forests is constantly kept high due to the large amount of decaying matter in the soil. Decomposed leaves from humus is the biggest source of soil fertility.

The wild animals and other beings get enough protection from the solar heat, temperature and the leaf cover formed on the earth gives cooling effect to the earth.
Forests keep the environment pleasant because they get moisture from earth through their roots and spread it in the air through their leaves. Forests cause rainfall through the process of transpiration.

Forest help in giving the direction of wind and its speed. Forests help to keep environment healthy and beautiful.
They also minimize noise pollution.

Well managed forests supply higher quality water with less impurity than water from other resources.
Some forests raise total water stream, but this is not true for all forests. They reduce light reflection, offer a sound barrier and help guide wind direction and speed. 

Answered by Expert 3rd September 2008, 9:46 AM
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