An endangered rainforest is a rainforest in which the vegeatation, ecosystem, and animals are in danger of extinction. A rainforest is defined as any forest with a high annual rainfall. As much of 45% of all the world's animal species are said to live in rainforests. Rainforests are also responsible for about 28% of the earth's oxygen turnover. Oxygen turnover, in this case, refers to the process of photosynthesis, in which plants convert carbon dioxide into stored carbon.
An endangered rainforest may be classified as such for a number of different reasons. Some rainforests, such as Great Bear Rainforest, are in danger because of the logging industry. In these cases, a large percentage of the trees are cleared for the commercial use of the lumber. This act makes the rainforest an endangered area by destroying the habitat of the many species of wildlife that live there. The clearing of trees also impairs the migration routes of many animals.
Another factor that may lead to a rainforest becoming endangered is the introduction of non-native plants and animal species into the rainforest ecosystem. Plants and animals that are not native to the habitat will create an endangered ecosystem by severely altering the habitat, making it difficult for native species to co-exist. In some cases, non-native animals that are introduced into rainforests will prey on the native species.
In countries such as Brazil, the endangered rainforest is the result of a number of different factors related to the growth of industry. Tourism, for example, may lead to the building of highways through a threatened rainforest. Other times, cattle ranchers might build in the rainforest.
There is much debate as to how long the rainforests can survive in the modern world. Some scientists have argued that rainforests will become obsolete in about 100 years if action are not taken. Some scientists have argued that we are in danger of losing all the world's rainforests within 75 years. Government regulations, community activism, and some voluntary changes in corporate practice have proven successful at helping to reforest some areas of endangered rainforest, though.
There are a number of groups dedicated to preserving the world's endangered rainforests and rainforest species. Groups such as the Rainforest Foundation Fund have raised money to campaign against destruction of rainforests by working with governments to protect these ecosystems. These funds also campaign to protect the rights and lifestyles of the indigenous peoples who live in the rainforests.