How to save the Amazon rainforest
An Amazon rain forest that once provided the backbone of the region’s economy is being transformed into a giant exporter of soy and corn.
A new report by the University of Washington and the University in Hong Kong says the Amazon’s forest cover is being eroded at a rate of 5.3 billion hectares annually.
The Amazon, which is home to around 1.5 billion people, is home not only to soy and cotton but also to rice, wheat and corn, and a growing number of other crops, according to the report.
The loss of the Amazon forest is a major factor in the regions devastating drought and the destruction of its agricultural economy, which accounts for more than half of the continents gross domestic product.
The report said the Amazon is losing about 80 percent of its forest cover in a single year, and it is expected to lose another 25 percent this year.
The authors said this is a massive loss, which will have a massive effect on agricultural production and livelihoods in the Amazon.
“The loss of forest will require the most dramatic and unprecedented transformation in the forest cover history,” said the study’s lead author, Michael B. Oster, a UW professor of forest economics and ecology.
The study’s findings have been released Wednesday at the annual meeting of the American Geophysical Union. “
We need to understand how much forest is lost each year, how much it can be recovered, how to conserve that forest, and how to grow the forest to provide livelihoods for the people who depend on it,” he said.
The study’s findings have been released Wednesday at the annual meeting of the American Geophysical Union.
The researchers looked at the Amazon from 2003 to 2013, with data collected from satellite imagery, soil samples, and aerial surveys.
They compared the forest loss in the same period with the forests’ restoration, which includes clearing, reforestation, and logging.
They also looked at changes in tree species and other factors such as temperature and precipitation.
The analysis of data from 2003 through 2013 showed that in 2014, the Amazon lost 7.8 billion hectares, while in 2015, it lost an additional 8.6 billion hectares.
It’s unclear how much of the loss in forest is due to the ongoing drought, but the researchers said it was likely due to drought-induced mortality and erosion of trees.
In 2015, the Brazilian state of Bahia lost a third of its rainforest to deforestation.
Brazil’s National Agency for Nature Conservation said last year that deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon is more than 20 times higher than in the rest of the country.
The agency says about 95 percent of Amazon deforestation is due in part to the soy industry.
“Agriculture, which supports about 15 percent of Brazil’s GDP, is a large part of the deforestation problem,” said Luis Vidal, director of the Bahia Institute of Forestry Research and Policy.
“This is the reason that the Amazon, a place that used to provide employment and wealth to so many people, now has become a forest of destruction.”
Amazon forests are also the home to about 50 percent of the world’s palm oil plantations.
It is the worlds second-largest oil palm producer, behind Saudi Arabia, but it accounts for less than one percent of total world palm oil production.
According to the United Nations, about 40 percent of deforestation in Brazil is linked to soy.
The University of California, Davis, also has a study in progress on deforestation and the Amazon which will be released this summer.
In its report, the U.S. Forest Service said it is committed to finding ways to conserve Amazon forests.
The U.N. Environment Programme (UNEP) has also released a report on the Amazon deforestation that found that the forested areas of the rainforest were becoming more densely populated.