Mendax News Service
Are there too many trees? That is a question that is causing great concern among many scientists worldwide. The problem of exponential increase in the tree population is one that few people outside the discipline of dendrology (the study of trees) are aware of. In order to explain the magnitude of the problem we consulted many noted experts in the field for this report.
One of the explanations for the rapid increase in the tree population was attributed to climatic changes. Dr. F. X. Molesky, world renowned climatologist has advanced the theory that underwater volcanic eruptions have caused a worldwide temperature and humidity increase. Molesky says that the eruptions have caused a water temperature increase of .02 degrees Kelvin at the polar regions causing changes in temperature and water salination conditions. This in turn has caused increased rainfall facilitating more rapid tree growth.
Other causes are more easily understood by the ordinary non-specialist.
Dr. Harmod Wysong of the Longleaf Institute of Dendrology had explanations that attributed the ominous trend more to economic causes. " The problem", he said, "has been increasing ever since Detroit stopped making wood-sided cars and trucks, ships quit using wood in their construction and people went to gas and electric heat sources."
This is not the only reason, however. The powerful tree lobby has been gobbling up land for years to plant its rapid-growth trees and the petroleum producers have been trying to get people to use plastic instead of paper bags at the supermarket, thereby reducing demand for pulpwood at the very time its supply is increasing geometrically.
Political efforts to help save resources and endangered species such as the spotted owl and the stump-jumper have only exacerbated the problem. As forest land is placed off-limits to timber companies, the price of lumber goes up because of the supposedly diminishing supply. This in turn causes more tree planting by the greedy lumber producers to reap the potentially greater profits.
Not surprisingly, governments have been a major cause of the tree over-population problem. In many areas, every new building has to have a certain number of trees planted on its property after completion and if a tree is chopped down, even on private property, a new tree has to be planted. Even an unwanted tree cannot be summarily killed, just because it happens to be in the wrong place.
It is estimated that there are five times as many trees in the Americas than there were when Columbus came here. If the tree lobby is not exposed and stopped, pretty soon there will be no place for houses, farms, stores or offices. Experts estimate that at the present rate of increase, there will be no place for people to live by the year 2015.
What are some of the remedies suggested by the experts? Dr. Molesky suggests that you purchase only wooden furniture and buy no products containing recycled paper; insist on virgin paper. Heat your house with a wood stove or fireplace. Stop extinguishing forest fires; let them burn out of control. Outlaw the use of steel or any artificial materials in home construction.
Dr. Wysong suggests that ships be made out of wood unless they are for military use. Fire all boilers with wood instead of coal or oil. Require railroads to retire their diesel-electric locomotives and return to wood-fired steam locomotives. Return to wood for bridge construction and use more wooden airplanes. The wooden airplane is an idea whose time has surely come. In the event of an airplane crash, the wreckage would completely deteriorate within a few years thus not causing permanent harm to the environment.
During the administration of Franklin Roosevelt, many roads were made out of logs laid perpendicular to the line of travel. These were referred to as corduroy roads. They were ecologically sound and prevented drivers from falling asleep at the wheel. They should be brought back.
Professor James Parks of the Smyrna chapter of Treat Responsibly the Environment and Ecology (TREE) agreed that the tree problem is very real, but he denounced as "alarmist" the idea that trees will be a problem as early as 2015. Parks says that he doesn't see the over-population of trees as causing serious problems for 'humans and non-silvicolous animals for at least thirty years.
He did agree, however, that the trend of rapid forestation is disturbing. "The time to seek solutions is now, not when we have been finally walled in by trees", he said.