People have already destroyed much of the rainforest because of the trees located there. With over 90 % of America’s virgin forests already gone, protecting the rainforest is more crucial than ever before. If the Amazon rainforest were a country, it would be the ninth-largest in the world. Much of the Amazon rainforest is going up in smoke.
The amount of deforestation in the Amazon is alarming. People in Brazil have been cutting down the forests at an alarming rate because of the need for paper and other products made from trees. Workers ship the paper and lumber around the world. The workers ship over 30 % of the lumber to the United States, according to the Secretariat of Foreign Trade. Countless trees are also cut down to make paper. After corporations harvest the best trees, then the people living in the area set the area on fire to clear the rest of the land before turning to cattle ranching to make a living. The whole process is legal under Brazilian law.
In the first three quarters of 2019, there were over 39,000 fires in the Amazon rainforest. The Brazilian government says that nature’s forces have set these fires, but environmental groups say that they think the fires have been deliberately set. It was not until world leaders put enormous pressure on the government that Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro placed a ban on residents setting the fires. He claims that environmental groups supported by the government have been setting the fires because they had their budgets cut under his regime. When the government’s National Center for Space Research released images of the fire, Jair Bolsonaro was quick to fire him. Reuters says there is nothing unusual about the weather in the Amazon this year compared to last. The number of fires, however, has risen by over 77 %.
The long-term effects of these fires will be devastating. Each tree that is lost not only fails to collect more carbon, but it releases all the carbon that it has collected back into the atmosphere. While running for office, Bolsonaro campaigned hard that the land should be removed from indigenous tribes living there and opened up for agriculture. According to Intercept, if 5 % of the rainforest is lost to these fires, then it will trigger the feedback loop. Once the forest enters this loop, scientists fear that it will begin to dry out and burn. They warn that once it does, the problem will only cascade.
While you may not have the ability to get involved in Brazilian politics, you can help recycle paper at your corporation. Contact Orlando Recycling Co about being your paper recycling in Orlando company. They can set you up with a compactor system and train your employees on the importance of paper recycling in Orlando.