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Rains n Sunshine

Posted by: Charmaine DeSouza on Thu, Jun 11th, 2009

Of rains and sunshine

“I’ve got Sunshine on a cloudy day; when it’s cold outside I got the month of May…” Yea well can’t sing that song anymore coz there is no rain outside and it’s anything but “cold”. Where has all the rain gone? Have the Rain Gods gone on strike? All I can hear is a choir of frogs bellowing away all through the night in the fields below my window. Let me tell you, they’re really loud. They succeed to keep me from sleeping with their croaking. One would think the entire field was covered with frogs.

Seriously, where has the rain gone? We’ve been having rain showers intermittently. That should be a strong indication that something is terribly wrong with our environment. Do remember the days from years gone by when we would be stuck indoors because the rain was torrential and it would be insane to step out in that kind of weather. Do you remember clutching your raincoat and clinging on to your umbrella while walking back home from school or from tuitions? I haven’t experienced that weather in the past few years now. June – September feels like an extended Summer now.

Have we really messed the environment so much that we don’t have a monsoon anymore? We must have. Look at how the global warming has increased and the ozone layer has depleted. How can we save our planet? Is it too late now to make the change and see if we can awaken the Rain Gods?  

The change starts with us. How? We can’t plant enough trees to make a new rain forest because the old one that used to be there was cut down and destroyed to make place for new roads and new buildings. Can we bring the animals that are now extinct back to life? Can we save what little we have now? Now this we can surely do… we can start by learning about saving our environment and the endangered animals that share our planet.

We need to make people realize that forests are there for a reason and the reason is not for us to cut down and destroy. When we cut down trees we are decreasing our chances of getting rain.

We need to make people realize that forests are there for a reason and the reason is not for us to cut down and destroy. The water cycle is also affected by deforestation. Trees extract groundwater through their roots and release it into the atmosphere. When part of a forest is removed, the trees no longer evaporate away this water, resulting in a much drier climate. Deforestation reduces the content of water in the soil and groundwater as well as atmospheric moisture. Deforestation reduces soil cohesion, so that erosion, flooding and landslides ensue. Forests enhance the recharge of aquifers in some locales; however, forests are a major source of aquifer depletion on most locales.

Shrinking forest cover lessens the landscape's capacity to intercept, retain and transpire precipitation. Instead of trapping precipitation, which then percolates to groundwater systems, deforested areas become sources of surface water runoff, which moves much faster than subsurface flows. That quicker transport of surface water can translate into flash flooding and more localized floods than would occur with the forest cover. Deforestation also contributes to decreased evapotranspiration, which lessens atmospheric moisture which in some cases affects precipitation levels downwind from the deforested area, as water is not recycled to downwind forests, but is lost in runoff and returns directly to the oceans.


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