Biodiversity

in the Amazon Rainforest

Location.

Amazon rainforests cover about 6% of the Earth's surface and are home to over 50% of global diversity. To be an amazon rainforest the area must receive over 250 centimeters of rain each year. The Amazon rainforest in South America is the largest in the world. Brazil contains about 40% of the world’s remaining tropical rainforest. Its rainforest covers an area of land about 2/3 the size of the continental United States.

Importance of the Amazon Rainforest

Rainforests are the most threatened types of ecosystems in the world today. If we keep cutting down rainforests like we down today, from between 50,000 and 170,000 square kilometers per year, in 100 years there will be none. Some reasons we should save the rainforest is because, as said above, 50% of global diversity is in the rainforest. As we cut down rainforest, we are killing off all of these animals that live there. Another reason we should stop cutting them down is because more than a third of pharmaceutical products in the U.S are made from a rainforest plant. If we lose the rainforest, we could lose a lot of the medications we use.

Harmful Activities

The most harmful activity to rainforests is deforestation. One of the driving factors of deforestation is international leading institutions give money to the national government for big projects that directly reduces the forest. Another thing that causes deforestation is poor farmers clearing land because if they do the government gives them a legal title to that land. Another reason to cut down these forest is the wood. Loggers cut down these trees for domestic use or export. While doing this, they also knock down many less valuable trees.

Protection efforts

Some of the things people are doing to conserve the rainforest is to expanding protection areas to maximize the survival of biodiversity. Another thing being done is making law enforcements. Because of lack or money, Brazil's environmental protection agency is unable to really enforce these laws. IBAMA estimates that 80% of all logging in the Amazon is illegal, but there's nothing they can do about it. To effectively enforce these laws, IBAMA needs more resources. I think if they had money a lot of the deforestation that is happening could decrease.

Paige Phistry