Logging Essay

1155 Words 5 Pages
Forestry is the removal of trees but also the destruction of habitat provided by these trees (Bernhardt et al.)
In Canada 38.2% of land is forest (World bank, 2015) and 9% is covered in fresh water (Alberta Waterportal, 2013). Due to the abundance of forests, logging is one of the main contributors to Canada’s economy (NRC, 2016). The removal of trees creates a variety of problems, many of which affect water ways. Water ways provide aquatic ecosystems, water for communities nearby, and a source of food for both humans and animals. Logging is a large part of Canada’s economy with large impacts on the areas surrounding the logging sites, many of these areas contain waterways which provide resources and habitats to many (Chambers et al., 2008).
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Without trees banks there’s an increased disruption of nutrients in the soil (Chambers et al., 2008). The disruption of water way banks causes increased runoff (total precipitation that runs into streams), concentrations of dissolved nitrogen (Chambers et al., 2008) through nutrient-rich topsoil being swept away by the wind (Bernhardt). Increased levels of nitrogen and phosphorus cause eutrophication which causes increased plant growth and a decrease in the oxygen present in water (The Conference Board of Canada, 2016). Vegetation located near water ways helps trap sediment and absorbs nitrates from groundwater (McLellan, 2014). Eutrophication is a large problem in the prairie provinces, southern Ontario and Quebec with less impact in British Columbia (The Conference Board of Canada, 2016). Increased runoff leads to an increased risk of flooding in areas near water ways (Casselman & Linder, 2013). Floods impact the economy, human life, cause property damage, destroy crops and spread waterborne diseases (Bracey, 2016). Along with runoff, eutrophication and floods, gully and in-field-water erosion causes sediment build up and changes in water depth (McLellan, …show more content…
This cover provides shade (McLellan, 2014), habitats (Bernhardt) and helps reduce direct precipitation (Chambers et al., 2008. The removal of forest canopy creates an increase in water temperature due to the direct sunlight on water ways. Water temperature affects a variety of variables such as pH, salinity, water density, dissolved gasses and toxicity (Fundamentals of Environmental Measurements, 2014). The metabolic rate of organisms is affected by water temperature due to temperatures impact on enzymes (Fundamentals of Environmental Measurements, 2014). An increase in metabolic function can affect a species respirations rates and digestive responses which can be detrimental over a long period of time (Fundamentals of Environmental Measurements, 2014).

Figure 1. Graph of Metabolic Rate of Aquatic Organisms 0ºC – 50ºC
(Fundamentals of Environmental Measurements, 2014)

If water temperatures increase over 35ºC there can be a decrease in metabolic function causing enzymes to break down (Fundamentals of Environmental Measurements, 2014). Forests provide a canopy which reduce runoff by intercepting precipitation (Chambers et al., 2008). The shade and reduction of runoff provided by trees limits algae growth in water ways (McLellan, 2014). Large growths of algae can create a shift in aquatic organisms and introduce invasive species which may not be affected by pollutants (Environment and Climate Change Canada,

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