Reforest the Caribbean

Choosing to sponsor a community based reforestation project on a large Caribbean Island would yield the most satisfying returns in terms of biodiversity, sustainability, and the goals of the project. Allowing the community to become involved in the project will make them feel invested in their environment and will help produce an environmentally healthy awareness amongst the islanders. Though restoring a lake habitat in New York has its merits, the Caribbean project will be a better investment of the organization’s money.

Studies confirm that biodiversity increases with respect to four factors: latitude, elevation, isolation, and successional stage. The first two factors obviously favor the Caribbean Island in that it is located closer to the equator and to sea level. New York is at a higher elevation and is not close to being in any tropical zones. In terms of isolation, neither location seems to be at an advantage over the other one. The New York habitat is located in an industrial sector meaning that it is not connected with extensive forests that could contribute to the diversity of the area. Islands obviously experience a notable amount of isolation but this does nothing to cancel the effect of its latitude location. The industrial sector undoubtedly leaks a significant amount of chemical pollution into the area that may hinder the progress of achieving successful reforestation. The successional stage can be assumed to be equivalent given that both areas are in need of reforestation. The arguments for biodiversity clearly stand in favor of the Caribbean project.

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The sustainability of each system suggests that the tropical forest is once again the wiser choice. An industrial sector of New York is likely to be mostly human dominated. In such environments, the renewable resources such as clean air and water will probably already be overused by the human population thus stressing a system that is already at a disadvantage. In order to achieve successful sustainability, more prominence must be given to factors like recycling, conservation, restoration, and limited growth. By making the Caribbean project community based, the inhabitants of the island will have the opportunity to learn these important principles and ensure the regions sustainability.

There is certainly a need for reforestation throughout the world. Even though this location is outside the United States, it is still important for us to assist these people with reforestation. The reduction in biodiversity is a world wide problem and we must take the responsibility of teaching and assisting those who may not see the severity of the problem or have the means to fight it. Plenty of U.S. tourists visit the Caribbean Islands and for them to see success abroad may inspire them to achieve it within their own borders. Though a project in New York may bring an inherent amount of publicity, the other factors such as biodiversity and sustainability support the pursuit of a community based reforestation project on a large island in the Caribbean.