Human civilization has wiped out 50% of the trees on Earth during the last century only, and within another 100 years, all rainforests will be wiped off the face of the Earth.
These forests are described as the lungs of the world, as they absorb the emissions of our daily activities and the toxic gases they leave behind that have raised the temperature of the planet, and also produce quantities of oxygen that pump life around the globe.
Scientists from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have succeeded in devising a new way to provide wood without the need to cut down more trees. The invention is based on printing wood through 3D printers from the cells of a flowering plant known as Zinnia elegans.
According to scientists, it is possible to multiply this plant, allowing the wood to be printed in any shape and size. The cells of the zinnia plant are treated with a liquid, then a viscous solution of hormones and nutrients. By varying the concentration of these hormones, researchers can control the hardness, density, and many other physical and mechanical properties of the plant material grown in the laboratory.
The research group from the University of Massachusetts has established a company to continue developing new techniques and methods for increasing the cultivation of wood in the laboratory, and the company plans to clone the cells of other plants such as pine trees to provide the required diversity of wood and completely eliminate the need for logging and clearing of live forests.