The Rainforest

Rainforest’s are a tropical forest that are found around the earths equator. The rainforest is found in Idonesia, South America and west and central Africa. The average temperatures are about 25-30 degrees. The rainforests are important because they provide homes for animals, plants and human, they also stabilise the climate by absorbing carbon dioxide. However in the 21st century they are under threat because of logging for timber, mining, road building, pasture for cattle ranching, crops and settlements. This essay will be researching 4 statements on the valuable resources that the rainforest offers and if sustainable devlopment can truly be introduced in the rainforest.
“The rainforest is a valuable resource and its preservation is important to us all”
The rainforest provides homes for about 70 million people, it also provides habitats for over 50% of the earths species of plants and animals. It also contains many plants which could provide new drugs and medicines in the furture e.g. Curae is a poison on Waorani hunting arrows which we also use as a relaxant in modern surgery. The rainforest also stablise’s the climate by absorbing carbon dioxide this also helps reduce the rate of global warming and they reduce soil erosion by intercepting the rainfall and also keep water courses free from sediment.

If deforestation was to continue millions of animals and plants would lose their habitats and possibly become extinct. Thousands of indigenous people of the rainforest would lose their homes and their way of life. We would also lose many cures for dieases and medicines that we could discover in the furture. Lots of damage to the climate and the enviorment could also mean that global warming would increase at a quicker rate.
“The indigneous people of the rainforest respond positively to the challenges of their natural enviorment and act as stewards of the forest”
Their are about 250 million indigenous people and about 5 thousand tribes, two of the tribes are Maorani and Kayapo. They live of the forest by using it to make food medicines and products to sell to make money such as brazil nuts. The indigenous people should be stewards of the forest because they live there, it is their home and they lived there for thousands of years which gives them historical rights to the Rainforest, they also want to protect it from damage and the dieases people have brought in.
“There are some people who wish to exploit the rainforest. Explotation of the forest has positive and negative effects.”
Explotation of the rainforest can be negative and positive. Cattle ranching is positive because it helps feed the countrys own people and they can sell it to other countrys to make money, the negative side of it is the grass that grows in rainforest area is of poor quality and cattle do not thrive, also milk yields tend to be low and after a few years the land is no good. Logging is good because it gets us useful materials such as mahogany, sapele and lauan, which grow no where else in the world, the negative of this is one hactare of rainforest is cut down just to log one mahogany tree. The positive of mining is that we get many good and useful metals such as gold, silver, aluminium, iron ore, copper and zinc.
The negative of it is many trees get chopped down and mercury which is used in gold mining causes contamination. Road building does not cause much deforestation but the settlements in its way do get destroyed, it does do a lot of good it allows people to get in and out of the forest easily and quickly. Oil exploration does alot of damage to the forest, many trees have to be chopped down for the pipe lines and disturbs the wild life. The toxic chemicals do alot of contamination to the rivers and soil. the positive of it is oil is a very useful resource.
Farming is one of the largest causes of forest loss. Huge plantations of banana and African oil palm now stand where rainforest once did, often farmers form other places who do not the farming techniques needed for forest enviorments, which means the soil soon becomes depleted, requiring further forest to be cleared. Hydro-electric dams are enviormentally friendly but to build them a lot of forest is destroyed. The positive of all these things is that it means money for the devloping countries and also opens up lots of jobs for the local people. The negative of these things is that they all do at least some damage to the rainforest.
“A balance can be achieved between sustained devlopment and conservation of the rainforest”
National park areas would make money from visiting tourists and would protect an area of the rainforest. Brazil nut trade is a good way for the indigenous people to make money, they pick them with out harming the trees and then turn them into an oil, which they sell to the body shop and the body shop turns the oil into a conditioner. Rubber tapping is where a liquid called latex is extrated from plantation trees, the latex is then processed to make a solid material called rubber, it is then sold and exported to other countrys. Enviormentally friendly logging is where only the trees that they want are cut down with out damaging the surrounding enviornment. The definition of eco tourism is “responsible travel to natural areas that conserves the environment and improves the well-being of local people.” there are seven principles to this:
* Minimize impact
* Build environmental and cultural awareness and respect
* Provide positive experiences for both visitors and hosts
* Provide direct financial benefits for conservation
* Provide financial benefits and empowerment for local people
* Raise sensitivity to host countries’ political, environmental, and social climate
* Support international human rights and labor agreements
Eco tourism is something everybody can participate in.
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