English Across the Curriculum

Tropical Rainforest

Value of the Rainforest

People benefit from the rainforest in many ways :

  • Economic value - Wood is the most important product of the rainforest. About 80 % of it is used for energy and 20 % is sold to make furniture. The forests produce other valuable goods like fruits, nuts, different kinds of oils and rubber.
  • Scientific value - Scientists study the rainforest as an ecosystem. They learn a lot about how plants and animals live together. Tropical plants are used to cure diseases like malaria.
  • Environmental value - Rainforests help to regulate our environment. Trees control the water that reaches the ground. They also take up a lot of rain. Much of this water evaporates and gets into the atmosphere again as vapour. Then it turns into rain and comes down to earth. Without rainforests, floods and droughts would be very extreme. Rainforests also help our atmosphere from becoming too warm.

Fog produces water vapour, which returns into the atmosphere
Image: Vyacheslav Argenberg (http://www.vascoplanet.com/), CC BY 4.0,
via Wikimedia Commons