Amazon forest is located in Brazil, covering approx 5.56 million square kilometres. It is called the lungs of the planet which provides 20% of our
oxygen. Recently there was a huge fire in the Amazon forest during 15 august to 22 august 2019. So what really caused the Amazon fire forest? The slash and burn has been a regular practice around the world and especially in Amazon. Slash and burn is a practice in which farmers cut down trees at the end of the dry season and then burn them right. This process leaves a nutrient rich layer of ash which provides as a good fertilizer for the crops. According to studies from 2002 to 2012 deforestation and fires has risen by 85%.
So the next question arises is how does it affect us or why it is such a big issue? We say Amazon is the lungs of the planet but we still continue to exploit it.
Amazon’s been home to millions of plants and animals ranging from turtles to jaguars. This abundance of life is important to us for balancing ecosystem. The fire has destroyed home of indigenous tribes living over there. The forest plays a crucial role in regulating climate change. Climate change is an important issue in today’s world. It is a major issue for most of the countries. Glaciers are melting down, trees are getting chopped down, more focus on industrialization
these all are the result of climate change. As the number of fire increases, greenhouse emission do too which makes the planet overall temperature rise. As
the temperature increases extreme weather events like tsunami, cyclone and flood happens because the glacier gets melt down. Deforestation contributes
directly to change in rainfall patterns in affected region increasing the length of dry season which affects forests, agriculture and human health. The slash and
burn process is practiced every year so what’s different around this time, why are we paying attention to the fires this time? The smoke travelling in south in
the atmosphere to the Sao Paulo, the commercial hub of Brazil played a major role. The smoke emerged in the state of Sao Paulo and combined effect of the
social media created a lot of awareness about the situation of the fire forest in the Amazon. Social media played a major role in the awareness. The fire was so bad that #prayforamazonia was trending on twitter and instagram.
HOW CAN WE PROTECT AMAZON?
- Reduce paper and wood consumption – Factories are cutting down some of the most endangered forest on the planet to make wood and paper products such as paper, office table, furniture etc. Trees are very important for our survival. We can help reduce the pressure on remaining forest by taking simple steps to reduce our wood and paper consumption. When buying something see if its recyclable because in that way the products we use gets recycled and are made into new products hence a simple step for saving our remaining forest. When going out take your own handbag instead of buying plastic bags. Plastic bags are harmful for our nature, they are not recyclable and thus they don’t get decomposed and is not healthy for the soil and environment.
- Palm oil trees - Worldwide demand for palm oil has increased sharply over the last few years. Since palm oil trees needs a lot of land, plantation are often established at the expense of rainforest. This gives rise to numerous problem for the climate, environment and people living in the forest. In preparing land for palm oil trees the most valuable trees are cut down and removed first, what remains is clearer by burning. It also causes loss of biodiversity.
- Reduce oil consumption - Burning of oil, gas and coal is the primary reason of the climate change, a trend that is threatening the stability of the global climate. Oil exploration projects leads to toxic pollution andmassive deforestation, posing a threat to ecosystem and indigenous cultures worldwide. We can help reducing oil impact by reducing our consumption of oil. While going outside go for a carpool instead of taking your personal car, in this way we save money and also reduce the consumption of oil. Try to take a walk or go with your bike when going somewhere near it benefits our health too.
- 4. Reduce meat consumption - In today’s world meat consumption is lot more than before. So the question is how does reducing meat\nconsumption can help in protecting Amazon? Since Brazil is the world’s largest beef exporter it impacts the Amazon rainforest, so reducing meat consumption will reduce the demand for it, thus cutting back the pressure to clear more forest for cattle.
- Creating awareness – Creating awareness plays a major role in protecting Amazon forest. Educating people about what to do and what not to helps in a lot of way. Social media is also the key to awareness. This time it helped a lot in creating awareness, celebrities took part in creating awareness.
- Donation – Lots of people have their own facebook donation pages so you can feel like you are doing something where you can see a slight difference. Donating some amount of money for a good cause can help lots of people.