In Brazil, the Amazon rainforest is now burning at a record rate.
The greedy, short-sighted policies of Brazil’s far-right President Jair Bolsonaro are jeopardizing indigenous peoples and countless plants and animals. Indeed, in the midst of a climate emergency, Bolsonaro’s policies to slash environmental protections and develop the Amazon for mining, ranching and farming jeopardize the future of life on Earth as we know it.
North America has already lost nearly 300 species to extinction. The toll in the more-diverse tropics like the Amazon is unimaginable.
The Amazon not only harbors much of the Earth’s cultural and biological diversity, it plays a major role in oxygen production, carbon dioxide balance and the water cycle. It is a living library of pharmaceuticals and anthropological treasures.
The fires and increasing deforestation in the Amazon ― with cattle ranching for beef exports to the United States as a primary driver ― will have disastrous consequences for biodiversity and will accelerate global climate change. [Continue reading…]