Tropical Rainforests: Importance, Hazards and Solutions – the example of Amazon:
The Amazon rainforest is the biggest tropical rainforest in the world and has a unique impact on the world’s climate. It holds the biggest water mass, holding multiple times more water than its runner-up, and is also the place where the largest fish migration occurs.
Hundreds of indigenous communities live within the Amazon, some of which are in complete isolation. The Amazon also acts as a carbon sink as well as a the world’s air conditioner. However, 20% of the Amazon has already been desforested and the World Bank predicts that a 20% forest loss is the Amazon’s Tipping point, the point at which desertification is triggered.
The Amazon has various threats, including mining, oil concession, road construction, dams, and most significantly deforestation for cattle ranching and agricultural production. It is not easy to find solutions for such a wide range of threats.
The local and indigenous communities therefore play a big role as part of the solution. An important foundation for forest protection is to assure an income for the local communities through renewable resources.
This should be accompanied by the preservation of the most ecologically important territories by establishing protected areas and indigenous territories. The industry, however, must also be made more sustainable. There must be political pressure to create this change and we, as consumers, must use our resources responsibly.