Why the Amazon rain forest should be protected?
Where is the Amazon Rain forest?
The Amazon sits on the equator and is a part of a few South American countries: Brazil,Peru,Columbia,Bolivia,Venezuela,Ecuador,Guyana and Suriname
The Amazon Rain forest is situated in South America on the equator, this is a prime location for a rain forest. The Amazon is home to millions of species of bird, fish and other species and some are still yet to be discovered. It is given the name ‘The Lungs of the Earth’ as it produces more than 20% of the Earth’s oxygen which we depend on, so what is the problem? The problem is deforestation and global warming, it has been happening for many years and with 2.4 acres of trees being cut down every second it doesn’t look like it will stop.
Benefits and value of the Amazon rainforest
The Amazon benefits us as trees and other plants all contribute to reducing pollution levels because they take in carbon dioxide and release oxygen back into the air this is done by photosynthesis. Everyday global warming is becoming more and more serious but taking away the rain forest won’t do anything but make it worse so it is in our interest to keep it and try to restore the vast amount that has been lost. Also the Amazon is home to millions of species and plants, most of them are still yet to be found;thus emphasizing its importance not just for the beauty of the animals but for science and for the development of our understanding of these species. The main reason why we want to keep the amazon is its potential to cure many diseases with its plants; scientists believe that only 1% of plants have been studied in detail. So taking away the amazon would further reduce the chances of curing diseases like cancer, scientists think that if there was a cure for cancer it would could from the Amazon. Water released by plants into the atmosphere by evapotranspiration, influences the climate and also the circulation of currents. This process also sustains the climate in that region which it depends on, climate change could drastically affect the amazon.
Threats facing the Amazon rainforest
Deforestation is one of the biggest threats to the amazon with a patch of land the size of a football pitch being cut down every second there needs to be a change. Deforestation occurs when large companies log or burn down natural forests so that they can use the land for something else e.g. mining and agriculture. Deforestation has many negative impacts on the environment but the most dramatic impact would be the loss of habitat for millions of species. Global warming is another concern. Global warming is a big threat to the planet but the impact on the rainforest will be significant. If the earth’s temperature were to increase/decrease by two or three degrees then over 70% of the Amazon could be lost. People that own land in the rainforest do not go its natural resources but instead they cut it down to put in a farm or a mine. Although this agriculture is bringing in money for the owners and the local economy it is coming in the expense of the amazon.
How I feel about what is happening
The amazon is one of the most unique places in the world, it is full of natural resources, beautiful species and it has a massive medicinal potential. It is in the interest of everyone living on earth to preserve the rain forest as it is very essential for life on earth, it cleans our polluted air by taking in carbon dioxide and it produces 20% of the world’s oxygen. Also I feel that the Amazon is being mistreated and not much is being done about it the threats to the Amazon don’t seem as if they can be stopped, and among those threats deforestation is the most concerning. The amazon is a very useful natural resource, because of its medicinal potential, species and for its vast amount of woodland. The fight for the rain forest may have come too late, although there are many organisations in place that are trying to protect the rain forest no significant impact has been made. With acres of land being cut down every day it is quite clear that the loggers have not been deterred. But bringing in campaigns and initiatives to help the loggers understand the consequences of taking away the amazon. Most of the loggers are not educated about the long term effects of deforestation and I am sure that they will be shocked when they find out.
One of the ways we can help reduce threat to the amazon is by introducing sustainable logging regimes. If loggers got their wood sustainably I’m sure that much less of the rainforest would have been destroyed. This regime would be beneficial to the loggers as well as the rainforest because it would give the companies the wood they want and it will also give the amazon time to restore what was once there. To reinforce this it would be logical to put a limit on how much wood each manufacturer can cut down; if these rules were not abided by then it would lead to a fine. Another way we can reduce the damage to the amazon is by the government banning large infrastructure and road building this would save acres of land. But this would not be needed if people were educated about the amazon. The government should also put in campaigns that educate people about the rainforest, to show them the effect of deforestation and global warming. Local people also own land but most of them clear-cut their land for farming, we should encourage them to harvest the unlimited resources that are found in the amazon like nuts, medicines and fruits; this in the long run would save millions of acres.
Large corporations need to work together
The amazon has masses of land taken away from it and in the last few years it has gotten worse. But now more people are aware of the importance of the amazon the future may be bright for the rain forest. In the future I feel that some of the solutions that I have listed may be implemented, and once they are I think that they will make a significant impact on the amazon. But these changes won’t come about straight away I think it may even take as long as 2020 to get these in place. Also I feel that organisations like wwf will be given a stronger role and will be able to contribute to the decisions that will be made. So in conclusion I believe that if organisations and governments can make these changes the amazon can live on so that we can keep its legacy forever.
To find out more/how to help
- Protecting the Brazilian Amazon | The Nature Conservancy
The Amazon harbors the largest remaining tropical forest on our planet, home to nearly one-third of the planet's plants and animals. Find out how we are protecting the amazon rainforest.
- The Amazon - WWF UK
- Save the Amazon | Greenpeace International
The Amazon is the largest remaining tropical forest in the world, as big as Western Europe or the whole of the US, and plays a vital role keeping the world's climate stable.