How can you preserve something when you don’t really know what you’re preserving? Back in 2009 the Brazilian government promised to cut their 2004 deforestation rates 80% by 2020. And last week saw excellent news from the country’s Forestry Ministry, which is planning an incredibly detailed survey of the unique and seriously threatened Amazon rainforest.
According to the Brazilian Forestry Minister, Antonio Carlos Hummel, they are going to “come to know the rainforest from within” during the first detailed survey for more than 30 years.
Brazil’s 3,288,000 square miles of rainforest – about half the remaining tropical forest on earth – will be sampled by expert teams who will log 20,000 points at 20km intervals, looking at the number, height, diameter and species of trees as well as identifying how local people interact with the rainforest at each site.
The survey is set to cost Brazil a cool 33 million dollars but it’s a drop in the ocean when you consider what it actually means: the survey will help the country’s government bring their plans to decrease deforestation to fruition at long last. A detailed inventory of the forest will give them the information and insight they need to monitor tree numbers and species, which in turn will drive sustainable goals.
When will we see the results? The survey is due to take 3-4 years and will eventually deliver invaluable information about the soils, biomass, carbon content, outstanding biodiversity and amazing variety of tree species, all of which will improve human understanding of the rainforest’s characteristics and help drive the Brazilian government’s plans to reduce deforestation.
There’s just one warning sign in the shape of a comment by Brazil’s Environment Minister Izabella Teixeira. As well as knowing how much forest is left and what condition it’s in, the survey will provide information about, “its potential economic use.”
A drive-by clip displays a dense forest near São Paulo city in the Southeast Brazil. Very short footage, but excellent to give you an idea of that type of landscape.
Jonathan Stock writes for Spiegel.de that, “The construction of a giant dam in the Amazon region of Brazil is threatening parts of the world’s largest rainforest.
Brachycephalus tridactylus is a three fingered frog from brazil.
I got this great video via Eddie Arthur today. A mutual colleague Phil (or one of his team more likely) found it on one of our Wycliffe Global Alliance websites and Eddie posted it on his blog.