why do we need trees to breathe
Boy do we all need trees! Why? Let me explain. Humans, and virtually all other critters, live on a gas called oxygen. Oxygen is one of the gases found in air and every single cell inside you needs the oxygen you inhale for energy! Sure, you also need food, but your body couldn t even make use OF the food you eat if you didn t have that oxygen. When you exhale, you get rid of gases from the air that your body can t use, as well as gases that your body s cells have produced while at work. This includes a modest amount of carbon dioxide gas that was in the air you breathed in as well as the carbon dioxide that was made by your body. Now the remarkable thing is that humans can t breathe pure carbon dioxide. Heavy-duty amounts of carbon dioxide are poisonous to them. In fact, that s why so many of you have alarms in your homes, similar to smoke alarms, that are made to go off if they detect the presence of serious amounts of carbon dioxide being belched out of something such as a furnace.
So how come all you humans exhaling hasn t made a world filled with nothing but carbon dioxide? Because of trees. Through their leaves, trees take in carbon dioxide from the air, use it to make the sugar that is their food, and release gases they don t use back through their leaves. What don t they use? Oxygen. Amazing, huh. And amazingly lucky! So the answer is yes, yes, yes. We like trees, but even more importantly, we NEED trees. We couldn t afford to lose them!
We need trees for the very air we breathe. Trees absorb carbon dioxide and, in turn, give off oxygen.
But trees are even doing more for us than providing oxygen Because we have a surplus of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere, Earth is experiencing dramatic climate change and the Greenhouse Effect. The CO2 released into the atmosphere traps heat and prevents its escape into space. Trees help to absorb some of this excess CO2, working as carbon sinks. *One mature tree can absorb carbon dioxide at a rate of 48 pounds per year and will release enough oxygen back into the atmosphere to support 2 human beings for a year. *If every American family planted just one tree, the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere would be reduced by one billion pounds annually. This is almost 5% of the amount that human activity pumps into the atmosphere each year. Trees clean the air by removing gaseous pollutants through absorption. *In one growing season, one mature sugar maple tree removes 60mg cadmium, 140 mg chromium, 820 mg nickel, and 5200 mg lead from the environment.
Trees lower local air temperatures by transpiring water and providing shade. They also can block winds in the winter. Thus, they can reduce home heating and cooling costs and the need for fossil fuels burned to make electricity. *The evaporation from a single large tree can produce the cooling effect of 10 room size air conditioners operating 24 hours/day. *It is estimated that three shade trees strategically planted around a house can reduce home air-conditioning bills by 30 to 58 percent. See what trees can do for you by preserving old trees and planting new trees on your property.
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