Brazil Takes a Step Backward on Deforestation

Rainforests are known as the lungs of the earth because they convert carbon dioxide into oxygen. The Brazilian rainforest is one of the most biodiverse rainforests on the planet, but like many other rainforests, it is being destroyed. By destroying the rainforest, we are putting the earth’s oxygen supply in jeopardy.

Deforestation is an ongoing problem on our planet and threatens many of the world’s ecosystems along with the different species living within them. In the recent past, the Brazilian government began to make changes that would protect the rainforest and consequently the earth’s oxygen supplies. Along with the World Wildlife Fund and Conservation International, Brazil began to limit the amount of clear cutting taking place in the rainforest. Brazil pledged that by 2020 it will reduce deforestation by eighty percent.

However, these changes are now in jeopardy. On December sixth, the Brazilian senate passed a new forest code. If signed by the president this code will lessen the buffer zones around rivers as well as the amount of land that land owners must leave forested. This puts the planet in jeopardy of even more deforestation thus significantly lessening our oxygen supply. This is especially hazardous with our increasing global population. Brazil has been warned of the consequences of the deforestation and hopefully will continue to take steps to save the rainforest.

Renee Dobrinsky

Topic: Ecology and the Living World

Source: Cutting Down the Amazon: Brazil Takes a Step Backward on Deforestation (December 2011) by Bryan Walsh Time Science

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