Deforestation raises the risk of flooding in Haiti
Deforestation has transformed Haiti's landscape leaving several cities highly vulnerable to flooding and mudslides. Two percent of Haiti's land is still forested, but charcoal remains in high demand for cooking fuel. Gonaives. 7th-10th November 2009
In 1923 around 60% of Haiti was covered by forests. By 2006 the figure was 2%. The trees are cut down for charcoal, which is used almost universally as fuel for cooking. As a result, the hills of Haiti have become barren and unprotected. The fertile topsoil is wahsed away by rain, reducing the productivity of the land. The lack of vegetation also leaves the settlements below highly vulnerable to the flooding and mudslides which periodically afflict the country during the hurricane season. In 2004 and 2008 the town of Gonaives was devastated by a series of hurricanes and troical storms killing thousands.