Lessons > Feedback Effects > Step 1
So far we have considered only the impact of burning fossil fuels. But there are other human activities that influence the carbon cycle. One major factor is deforestation and land use. Currently, land use (for example, rice paddies) and deforestation outstrip reforestation by roughly 1 GT per year. If deforestation were to increase, perhaps due to increased burning of rainforests, carbon would be transferred first from terrestrial plants to the atmosphere and then through the rest of the carbon cycle as seen in Lesson 1.
Change the net deforestation rate and observe how that impacts the carbon cycle. Note that deforestation is expressed as GT of carbon released, not as a percentage rate of increase. Realistic deforestation estimates would remain less than 2 GT per year. Record what happens to the system at a steady net deforestation rate of 1.6 GT per year and answer the following: