Fires in the Amazon Rainforest: What it Means for Us
In recent months, forest fires occurring primarily within the Brazilian and Bolivian Amazon rainforests have highlighted the dire consequences of indiscriminate slash-and-burn deforestation and the urgency for governments, organizations and individuals to play their part in conserving the “Lungs of the Earth” before it is too late.
Despite covering only 4 per cent of Earth’s surface, the Amazon rainforest is home to one-third of all known terrestrial plant, animal and insect species and is responsible for producing up to 20 per cent of the world’s oxygen.
Scientists point out that because the Amazon rainforest absorbs carbon dioxide while producing oxygen on such a grand scale, it plays a critical role in the global carbon cycle and shapes the world’s climate, for better or for worse.
The Fight to Save the Amazon
The Amazon is ours to save. Non-profit organizations such as Amazon Conservation Association and Rainforest Trust have been endeavouring to conserve and restore areas of the vast Amazon ecosystem. Their projects have been crucial to preserving critical habitat for endangered species.
In the Peruvian Amazon where Aqua Expeditions has been operating since 2007, we have been working closely with local communities and government officials of the Pacaya-Samiria National Reserve to monitor and preserve biodiversity in this protected part of the Amazon.
Here we sail in a high-moisture “flooded forest” ecosystem bolstered by the flow of the Amazon river’s many tributaries. Even though we are located in a very different environment as opposed to the predominantly dry forest affected by the fires, we recognize that our fates are all intertwined.
Aqua Expeditions takes a strong stand against the destruction of the Amazon rainforest and we urge you to share and spread the message of environmental conservation no matter where you may be.