Degradation of forests in Russia is so fast that in 10-20 years, they may stop producing clean water and air, said project coordinator forest policy of the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Russia Nikolai Shmatko.
"The quality of forests in Russia is deteriorating, deterioration is rapid. Fragmentation of forests, degradation of wood … in the next one or two decades, can not say that in the Russian forests will disappear, and that they will lose their ecological, ecosystem function. cease to be habitat for creatures that are associated with the forest. of a sharp depletion of the species composition and the forests will no longer be of value as regulators of the local climate, manufacturers of clean water and air, "- Shmatko said RIA Novosti.
According to him, the main cause of degradation, which is evident not only scientists, but also ordinary people, it is human activity.
"Forests are no longer intact, they are separated by roads, power lines, pipelines, landfills, towns. Uniform forest area is getting smaller and smaller, the large integral arrays disappear" — said the expert.
In addition, as noted ecologist, forest area as a whole is not reduced, but on the contrary increases slightly because agriculture in the country is in ruins. However, forest fragmentation, which results in degradation of the average increases by 3-5% per year.
This trend, according to experts, is inherent not only in Russia, but to the world, but particularly sharp it appears in the middle lane.
"Why is that bad? Many species of birds and animals for the habitat needs large forest areas. Such animals include tiger, brown bear, lynx. Among birds include osprey, hawks, vultures and sparrow hawk. For normal conditions the nesting and hunting they need vast forests, old trees, and with this we have a very big problem, "- he added.
Aspen groves instead
In addition, deteriorating rapidly and the species composition of the Russian forests. "We have cultivated forests where logging is where there is a recreation and so on, for the last 10-15 years there was a sharp change in the composition of the rocks. We almost no oak, ash. Gradually disappear seemingly familiar coniferous species — spruce and pine. zapolonyayut All birch and aspen. Forest on the map seems to be stayed, but its economic value is very low. ashen, oak forests is almost no reserves in the middle lane "- adds Shmatko.
The rate of depletion of species composition, according to experts, it is difficult to estimate, since this breed of Russian forests card was issued in 2000.
At present, according to WWF Russia, the forest area in the country of 1.2 billion hectares, and timber reserves are estimated at 83 billion cubic meters. However, about 40% of Russian forests are "unproductive — is woodland, montane forest, swamp forest areas, forests on permafrost soils." Information on these important from an environmental point of view there is little forest, the spokesman added WWF Russia.
In addition, environmentalists point to the lack of accurate information about the number of forest available for economic use, availability of forest areas, logging and poaching volumes burnt forest.