The Rain forest of Amazon

The Amazon rainforest is the world’s largest forest and is rightfully referred to as the lungs of the Earth as they replenish most of the oxygen in the world.?

What are the Amazon Rainforests?

  • The Amazon rainforests compromise of over half of the world’s remaining rainforests and support an estimated 390 billion individual trees divided into 16,000 species.
  • It is a moist broadleaf forest which covers most of the Amazon river basin.
  • The forest is located in nine separate nations with the majority of the forest located in Brazil which holds 60% of the forest cover.
  • Other nations with forest cover are Peru (with 13% of forest land), Colombia (10% of the forest land), and Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia, Guyana, Suriname and France (French Guiana) which all hold a smaller amount of the Amazon Forests.

Why Amazon Rainforest Matters?

  • The Amazon basin by virtue of its large size has held a great volume of sequestered carbon in the soil. This carbon if released will wreak havoc on the global climate system.
  • The Amazon Rainforests are also a key factor and help in normalizing the global monsoon systems.
  • The rainforests also host a rich selection of organic biodiversity of flora and fauna, most of which is endemic to the Amazons.
  • They are also the home to over 400 indigenous groups who till date have prevented vested commercial interests from exploiting the lands.

Why is it in the news?

With a new President, Jair Bolsonaro in Office, the scale of deforestation in the Amazons has increased rapidly with over 4200 sq km of forests already destroyed in the tenure of the new president. The new President has emphasized that he wishes to see a “Reasonable exploitation” of forests which hold some of the last virgin land left in the world.

What can be done?

The government of Brazil has much to gain by inviting and engaging the various stakeholders of the international community for the protection and upkeep of the Amazons. Brazil can ask the wealthier nations to foot the economic bill for the protection of the Amazons (Green Bonus). The rain forests, after all, are a global resource.?

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