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Of Forests and People

Forests cover a third of the Earth’s surface. They are home to over half of terrestrial species and hundreds of millions of human beings. Forests provide part of one in four people’s incomes. For 7 billion people, most of the world’s population, forests are resources for the food they eat, the air they breathe and the medicines they consume. And yet, forests remain unknown and and wrongly loved. And most of all, they are in danger.

The United Nations declared the International Year of Forests, 2011. It is an opportunity to discover, rediscover, celebrate, cherish, describe, protect and use these ecosystems more sustainably. These ecosystems were formed hundreds of millions of years ago before the first humanoids. Today, we threaten them.

Forest destruction is not inevitable: throughout the world, men and women fight to save them. Citizens, scientists, politicians and businessmen warn us about the threats forests face and suggest alternatives to protect them. This year is an opportunity to celebrate their initiatives and their efforts.

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