Amazon Rainforest – Deforestation

The main and most important reason why tropical rainforests need to be preserved is the fact that they’re enabling life on Earth. Not only are they absorbing carbon dioxide and creating oxygen in the process, they’re also regulating temperature and are producing important nutrients like nitrogen and phosphor and are protecting watersheds from erosion of salt as well. Tropical rainforests can be also quite helpful on field of pharmacology and new medication researching because between thousands of different plants that have their habitat here and perhaps they’re even hiding potential cure for menaces of the modern world like cancer and AIDS.

But what about their destruction, can this process be stopped? Between 1970 and now, Brazil lost more than 600,000 sq km (232 000 sq miles) of Amazon rainforest which is very disturbing information. Through this article main reasons for such deforestation will be presented and methods that could mean preservation of Amazon rainforest will be pointed out. First let’s point out the main reasons that are causing this high amount of deforestation.

Most important deforestation factor is clearing forest area for cattle pasture and it causes 60-70 % of total deforestation. Since cattle breeding is very profitable business and doesn’t require high maintenance expenditures and gives very solid profit, it’s very clear why such big percent of Amazon forest is being destroyed because of cattle pasture. Increasing number of cattle needs more area on which they can pasture and because of this reason forests are often being replaced by savannas and other coarse grasses.

Second great cause of deforestation is also connected with agriculture but this time with farms. Since most population in Brazil is still very much oriented on agriculture, large areas of forests are being cleared in order to leave more space to cultivable areas, where especially poor farmers are being stimulated by government politics to settle and work on these areas. Since farmers use fire in this process, whole procedure has its negative effect doubled, because not only forests areas are being destroyed but also large quantities of carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide are being released in atmosphere having negative impact on whole biosystem and polluting air we breathe.

Large growth of cultivable areas is also connected with advanced production of soybean because Brazilian scientists have discovered new sorts of soybean and soybean is very expensive and very appreciated on world market and Brazil has such rapid growth with soybean production that according to some predictions soon will go even past the USA which at this moment holds first place in soybean production. Although many people would think that logging is main cause for such huge deforestation that’s not true because it causes only 2-4 % of total deforestation. Tropical rainforests are presenting large source of expensive wood among which special place has precious ebony and that’s the reason why illegal logging is so much expanded and profitable business, namely because of high prices of this wood.

Just for example of that in September 2003, 17 people were arrested under incrimination that they destroyed 10 000 hectares of forest area and this is just small drop in the sea of illegal logging. Last factor that causes deforestation is infrastructure building, especially of roads and dams and it makes about 2-4 % of total deforestation.

Famous example of this politic is building of Trans-Amazonian Highway which had its purpose not only in connection between distant places but also in opening of new areas to farmers and easier exploiting of wooden riches. After this famous project was done, deforestation has gone to a whole new level and this presents a real example how building of infrastructure can cause complete ecological chaos. But can these factors be prevented or could they be at least slowed down until the level that could be more tolerable to environment?

There’s still hope but only under this conditions.

First of all, former forest areas should be rehabilitated which is not that difficult process if at least small part of former biosystem is saved. Rehabilitation also needs higher productivity of cultivable areas and intellectual approach to agriculture by using modern methods and by influencing on farmers and their ecological conscience which often brakes down the whole procedure. Number of protected forest areas should also be increased and for that strong and systematic politic is needed.

Laws should be very precise and very strict with huge punishments for its offenders, not only fines but also jail sentences for more severe lawbreaking. But the most important thing is to influence on ecological conscience of all people by trying to present them negative consequences of deforestation that could easily cause catastrophic effect to all life on Earth and result in even more expressed climate changes. Only fast intervention on all fields can have success, because humanity needs to find the right way while it still can. To make harmony between ecology and economy is very difficult task but by no means impossible.

Discover Why Turning Global Environmental Preservation Into a Business Is Critical

In understanding how to turn global environmental preservation into a business we must first understand why it is so important to take global environmental action.

I just read an alarming article today, the article stated that we are heading backwards on green house gas emissions after 20 years or more of attempting to limit them. We actually had the worst year of green house gas emissions to date; 5 percent more than in 2008. Green house gas emissions into the atmosphere is a major cause behind global warming.

The reason humans have made no progress in addressing the impending environmental catastrophe, is because of business as usual. Profit and the possibility of loss of any profit, has caused business to ignore the impending environmental signs that indicate serious problems. Money in one form or another is the driver of environmental destruction.

One potential remedy to this business model of profit at any cost, is to create and participate in a new business model. A new model is one that includes turning environmental preservation into a profitable business.

If the entrepreneurs, investors and other business leaders decide to turn global environmental preservation into a profitable industry, we might have a chance.

We have to change the current unsustainable models of business and create a new sustainable business model. A model that respects the environment and protects the future of this planet. Jobs or no jobs will not be an issue if we go beyond the environmental tipping points. Profit will no longer matter when life as we know it is destroyed.

It is time to start these changes now before we reach the tipping points of no return.

There is a huge profit to be made from cleaning up the environment. There are profits to be made in the areas of renewable energy, sustainable manufacturing practices and lifestyle choices.

The drive to maintain the status quo at any cost and the fear of loss of profit has a strangle hold on the economies of the entire planet. This mentality must change.

It has to start here in the U.S. where we have caused the majority of the green house gases, environmental pollution and resources depletion. The United States is the model the rest of the world will follow. We can lead the world to destruction or salvation.

If the planet goes beyond the tipping points and human life becomes completely unsustainable, it will no doubt be largely the fault of the U.S. If the catastrophe is averted, it will be largely because the U.S. stepped up and made the needed changes. Leveraging the profitable arena of global environmental preservation is key. Leading the world in a new direction towards a sustainable model for business and industry is critical.

There are models that have already established a track record of success. There are companies that are creating new innovative green products. There are energy companies offering alternative sustainable fuels and energy sources. There are other companies that are partnering with people, sharing the profits of sustainable farming and food production with a clear mission of environmental consciousness.

One company I know of, partners with indigenous tribes in the Amazon Rainforest to harvest and produce the health and wealth of the rainforest. They are providing the tribes with a means of income from environmentally sustainable harvesting and farming practices. This model of business contributes directly to global environmental preservation. By helping to keep the indigenous people on their ancestral lands, the local people become the caretakers of a thriving forest. The Amazon Rainforest eco system is critical to human sustainability.

This company also shares the profits of this enterprise with a wide array of people through their distribution model. A major component of this business model is a mission and vision for environmental sustainability that is taught and respected by all. Each person involved is treated with fairness and fully valued for their contributions.

Businesses need to focus on providing solutions for environmental preservation instead of exclusively focusing on their bottom line. Companies that are solution oriented will be the leaders who make the profits from global environmental preservation.

When companies embrace this kind of business model that embraces a mission for global environmental preservation, honesty and fairness, we will have hope for a sustainable future for humanity.

Experience Ecuador: The Amazon Rainforest

If you ever doubt the necessity of ecotourism or supporting environmental efforts, visit Ecuador. This beautiful Central American country boasts a share of the Amazon rainforest that extends over 40 percent of its land. Home to not only an incredible array of exotic flora and fauna, Ecuador’s several indigenous nations have carved their lives and traditions into rivers, lagoons, creeks, and towering trees. The sheer variety of life that the area sustains demands respect for the environment; it also presents unique opportunities for eco-friendly travel.

Half of the world’s bird species, 1,200 butterfly species, thousands of mammals and reptiles, jungles, and deep, life-filled waters combine to create incredible biodiversity. The nearby Galapagos Islands host their own spectacle of natural beauty and endemic species. Unfortunately, this diversity is threatened by logging, oil exploration and drilling, and a disregard for the environment that is slowly, slowly changing for the better.

In all of Ecuador, over 21 percent of the forest has been depleted, but there are examples of how ecotourism, preservation, and local community activism has helped the forests survive – and even thrive. Mindo, for instance, has actually managed to regenerate forest. Over 15 percent of Ecuador is protected now, though logging continues to be common. Visitors not only mean increased awareness of the plight of rainforests, but also dollars necessary to fund ecotourism ventures.

The Smart Voyager sustainable tourism certification program, which is a collaborative project of the Rainforest Alliance and Coservacion y Desarrollo, an Ecuadorian nonprofit, is a proactive and effective force in the ecotravel industry. Accommodations like the Black Sheep Inn, Bellavista Cloud Forest Reserve, and Kapawi Ecolodge also offer a terrific experience and help reduce impact on the land.

In an interesting twist, indigenous tribes are also becoming active in ecotourism. Angel Etsaa of the Achuar tribe of southeaster Ecuador, for instance, is a guide for the Kawai Eco-Lodge; eventually, the Achuar people will be the sole owners of the guide business, and hopefully, able to keep the ancestral homes pristine and free of developers.

When booking eco-friendly tours and accommodations, make sure that you choose companies that do not simply “green wash” their businesses in order to capitalize on eco-conscious tourists. Ask questions about their energy and waste management and their green initiatives. Smaller, locally owned businesses are also beneficial. No matter where you stay, do your part to keep your impact minimal.

The motto Ecuadorian travelers might adopt is “Tread lightly on the earth. And have a great time.” You can bird watch, enjoy the scenery, mountain bike, horseback ride, tube, or raft – you shouldn’t leave anything behind of yourself, but the rain forest will leave much of itself in you.