Difference Between Afforestation And Deforestation

Reforestation and afforestation are two opposite of preventing deforestation. The direct anthropogenic conservation of non-forest land back to forest land through activities like planting, seeding, and anthropogenic promotion of natural seed sources can define afforestation and reforestation. Approximately 4.6 million hectares of non-forest land are being restored annually in the world. Afforestation and reforestation may be done by well-planned processes such as deliberate planning or tree planting. Depending on the land, methods, and type used, these can have different impacts on the environment. When historically forested degraded land is used for afforestation and reforestation, the use of ecosystem-compatible native species is recommended. Hence, several large-scale afforestation and reforestation activities can have a negative effect on natural ecosystems and threaten endemic or endangered plant and animal species. The planting types must be chosen carefully, and invasive species invasions should be avoided in several early stages of afforestation and reforestation.

Afforestation Vs. Reforestation – Overview

The major difference between afforestation and reforestation is that afforestation is the reestablishment of forests on land that has not been forested for a long time or has never been forested. On the other hand, reforestation is the reestablishment of forests on land where they have been recently destroyed. The deforestation rate has increased worldwide and it has negatively affected our surroundings. It poses a negative effect on Earth, rises in sea level, global warming, etc., and thus even a hypothetical apocalyptic situation like the runaway greenhouse effect. While afforestation is one of the most suitable solutions to deforestation. The difference is that reforestation tries to cut down all the trees for use in the economy, such as making paper or furniture. Whereas, afforestation tries to plant trees where others have been cut previously. Afforestation recover all those trees that were lost.

Difference Between Afforestation And Deforestation In Tabular Form



The depletion of forests and trees for human and commercial purposes. The planting of forests in a land that was formerly infertile.
Extremely harmful to the entire environment. Too important if we want life on Earth, we need to plant trees.
Poses a negative impact on the ecosystem. Poses a positive impact on the ecosystem.
Highly undesirable and converts green land into barren. Helps in converting a waste barren land into a greener pasture.
Deforestation arises due to urbanization, globalization, and industrialization. The key objective is to curb carbon footprint and to assure the preservation of the surroundings.
Damage to the environment and increase global warming. Maintain favorable temperature in the environment and may cause rainfall, providing habitat for wildlife, preventing soil erosion, and others.
Deforestation should be reduced or stopped. Afforestation should be embraced and increased.


The destruction or depletion of surface forests (natural forests), usually caused by human activities by cutting or burning trees, with the aim of winning industrial inputs or either arable land for agriculture is called deforestation. It is a process caused mainly by human activities, forests can sometimes suffer similar damage due to natural accidents, like forest fires during drought or volcanic activity. Deforestation is the most serious threat currently looming over the planet’s forest masses. Deforestation leads to harm to the home of millions of species and it has a tremendous impact on soil deterioration and carbon fixation.

Solutions for deforestation

When we think that we cannot help stop it, simply because we are not a participant in the economic activities that cause it, the truth is that from your home you can collaborate so that together we can reduce deforestation. How? Through these solutions for deforestation:

  • Plant trees.
  • Adopt sustainable lifestyles.
  • Avoid the unnecessary consumption of certain natural resources, such as water.
  • Cut down on meat.
  • Protect the green areas around you.
  • Participate in volunteer programs.
  • Encourage your friends or family to also put these solutions into practice.


It generally involves planting trees on agricultural or other lands that have been abandoned due to poor soil quality or overgrazing. The soil was depleted over time, so now it won’t grow much there. Abandoned urban areas like land previously cleared for buildings that no longer stand, can also be good candidates for smaller afforestation projects. Afforestation can occur on lands where there may or may not be forests. Afforestation is carried out in some cases that a primary source of raw materials for the development of certain industries like wood and paper. It offers to anticipate the very serious problem of living in a world without trees, as important as we have already pointed out for the balance of the environment and for the development of economic activities.

Key differences between afforestation and deforestation

  • Afforestation consists of planting trees where there have been none in recent times. While reforestation consists of planting trees in areas that are currently covered with forests. But they have lost trees due to fire, disease, or the felling of trees for logging operations.
  • Reforestation and afforestation can be done when an area has been deforested.
  • Deforestation is due to short-term reasons such as logging or fires, or long-term reasons such as forests that were removed long ago to graze livestock or grow crops for agriculture.

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