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Sustainability In The Amazon Essay

1174 words - 5 pages

The consequences of deforestation could greatly decrease the diversity and productivity of the Amazon, damaging the overall health of the basin, but unfortunately must continue to some extent. Many Brazilians depend on logging and agricultural practices in the Amazon basin, and in the case of agriculture, much land has already been cultivated for crops. “In recent years, large-scale agriculture has experienced sizeable expansion and become the newest driver of deforestation in the region” (Azevedo-Ramos 2008). Unfortunately, “some deforestation is necessary for agricultural development,” but too much anthropogenic influence over the area is not desirable (Serrao 1996). Part of the reason ...view middle of the document...

Along those lines, the Brazilian government has begun to enforce policies that involve better regional planning, particularly of paved roads near which most deforestation takes place (Azevedo-Ramos 2008). By improving infrastructure and facilities near where deforestation is already most abundant, the disturbance of untouched land becomes unnecessary (or at least lessened). By implementing sustainable and reusable practices in the agricultural industry of the Amazon, fewer trees will be lowered and productivity in the Amazon will remain higher, benefiting all involved.
Deforestation is a problem that is not easily fixed, but takes the cooperation of all industries and people involved in the area. Private firms and workers must be willing to comply with government policy to sustain the Amazon and keep it healthy. People are aware of the importance of the Amazon on the world and of its importance for people in Brazil; there is no way that it will be ignored and left to wither. Improvements in sustainable logging and agricultural techniques and advances in technology will increase both industries’ efficiencies and decrease deforestation while permitting economic benefit.
Studies show that improving logging technology is also beneficial when decreasing the impact of deforestation because newer logging sites and machines yield higher harvest volumes of logs than older logging sites (Merry 2006). This helps to keep costs down and profits up, benefiting logging firms as well as the environment by making less of an impact on the rainforest.
All sustainable solutions have merit, but not all are plausible in every area. For example, it would not be practical to make the entirety of the Amazon Rainforest a strictly protected area, allowing for no resource extraction. The effects of this on local people and larger businesses would be far too catastrophic. This is also impractical because so much of the forest has already been cut down. However, in areas that remain untouched, I think that strict protection is a good idea. Untouched or lightly disturbed areas should be surveyed to account for what species are in those areas. Strict protection should be done in select areas to preserve as much biodiversity as possible in the rainforest. That being said, not all of the rainforest can be protected, because too many people rely on it for income. This is where reduced-impact logging comes in. RIL should be implemented in all logging areas, whether it be in a national forest or on private land. RIL studies show an obvious indication that sustainable logging practices work to protect the environment as well as turn a profit and create local work. Logging areas sold by the government...

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