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Amazon Essay

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Submitted By SoraiaBabe
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Deforestation
Of the Amazon

This assignment will be focused on the topic of deforestation in Amazon (mainly located in Brazil). For this topic I picked three articles from newspapers. I decided to choose this topic because I have always been interested in the Amazon and its beauty. It’s still fascinating for me how there is people (tribes) living in the Amazon forest when I cannot picture myself without technology living in a rural environment. I’ve also been always interested in the way they live and communicate among them so the fact that we have deforestation taking place there makes me so sad because it is something so beautiful and unique. The first article is mainly about the consequences of deforestation of the Amazon forest in America. In this article it is stated that a complete deforestation of the Amazon could result in a reduction of twenty per cent of rain and snowfall. This doesn’t sound scary but the real problem is that according to the Princeton University (located in New Jersey) who came up with this report, it also means that this reduction would lead to water and food shortages and great risk of forest fires. The reason behind these shortages is because due to the change that would happen in the snowpack of Sierra Nevada which is the main source of irrigation for California’s Central Valley which consequently would affect the food/water supply not only for California but the entire United States. Also, a naked Amazon could contribute to a weather cycle of extremely dry air which during the winter months would bring rain to California and the Sierra Nevada region while drying out the Pacific North West. In this article, it is also indicated that along with this change in the weather cycle, there would also be meandering winds that move east or west across the planet. These are known as the Rossby waves. David Megvigy explains in this article that the consequences of deforestation in the Amazon forest would not be limited to the Amazon but would also affect its surroundings including the climate, cloud coverage, heat absorption and rainfall. This article also suggests that a nude Amazon would change its weather to an El Niño pattern which they believe they will be very similar. Since we cannot predict the exact outcome of a treeless Amazon, researchers believe that there is a strong connection between what Amazon’s climate will be like and El Niño so they are studying it in more depth in order to get a handle on what to expect from Amazon deforestation. The last paragraphs of this article emphasize that as a result of dry air in the Amazon, the temperature would increase by 2 degrees Celsius over a fourteen year period following deforestation. It also emphasizes that the deforestation of Amazon could not only change the climate but the climate itself could also destroy the Amazon. “Research has shown that climate change, especially a spike in the global temperature, could wipe out as much as 85 percent of the forest.” In my opinion this article was not very reliable mainly because it is based on a report conducted by a university. Also because they do not present scientific proof. The second article is called “Forget the World Cup – Brazil Posts Double Win with Simultaneous Soy Boom and Deforestation Drop”. This article is about the struggle of Brazil to keep deforestation rates down over the last few years. This article explains that Brazil has managed to keep deforestation from increasing while they still increased their soy and beef production. However this progress is not stable and it is fragile. In this article is included an excerpt from a news release by Earth Innovation Institute. In this excerpt we acknowledge Brazil’s struggle more in depth. Since 2004, Brazil saved their forest to an amount of seventy per cent in deforestation decline due to the fact that their farmers and ranchers spared over 86,000 square kilometers of rain forests which is close to 14.3 million of soccer fields from clear-cutting. The main factors that contributed to this amazing change was a combination of public policies, market rejection of deforesting farmers, and an increase in protected areas. However, these changes still allowed Brazil to keep their soy and beef production profitable. Brazil’s success is not only due to the government but also organizations like Greenpeace and also its population. Although, this article shows that these changes can be short lived if positive incentives are not implemented for the farmers. In the excerpt, it’s also explained how in the period of 1999 to 2004, the rules of the forest code were not reinforced and they were unrealistic. In the period of 2005 to 2007, it became riskier for businesses to work with deforestation due to the pressure that Greenpeace had on them so an agreement was made between the buyers to push the farmers to use their existing farms more productively by only purchasing beans that were grown on land that has been cleared before. While this was taking place, the government also helped by increasing their protected areas in the agricultural expansion zones. This resulted in a drop of clear cutting of seventy per cent below its ten year average in just eight years. Nevertheless, in order to maintain these levels, Political leaders have to be persistent and that did not last very long. Farmers got frustrated and tired of the approaches of the UN declarations. To undo this, farmers would be rewarded with preferred access to finance and buyers and it has worked until today. I really liked this article because I was delighted to see that an actual effort is being put in order to slow down the destruction of not only a forest but communities. My last article is from BBC News and the title of it, is:” Brazil says Amazon deforestation rose 28 % in a year”. This article states that deforestation increased by 28% from August 2012 to July 2013 after many years of decline (stated in the previous article). This is being blamed on a controversial reform to Brazil’s forest protection law. Even though deforestation has risen, Brazil still remains the second lowest annual figure for forest loss in absolute terms. The reasons behind this increase was the fact that the protected areas that were previously set by the government of Brazil, have been reduced and areas that were destroyed before 2008 were declared for amnesty. Yet, after these claims, the government refused to take responsibility by proclaiming that around 4000 criminal actions were taken against deforesters in the previous year (2012). This resulted in a commitment from the government of Brazil compromising themselves to reduce deforestation of the Amazon by eighty per cent by the year of 2020. Despite this increase, Brazil has shown the best improvement of any country reducing its deforestation rates to half even though there was a net loss of 1.5 million square kilometers of forest which is an area of the size of Mongolia. I think that no matter how hard you try there would obviously be an increase sometime and it’s already amazing how this country is actually trying to keep deforestation down. They’re not only helping its country but the entire world since deforestation would obviously affect other parts of the planet.

Articles:
1st. Article:
Title: “If a tree falls in Brazil …? Amazon deforestation could mean droughts for western U.S.”
Source: States News Service – November 7th, 2013
Web link: http://go.galegroup.com/ps/i.do?id=GALE%7CA348744222&v=2.1&u=tplmain&it=r&p=AONE&sw=w&asid=9ae636b38bfb494a0f0198a750ed9930
2nd Article:
Title: “Forget the World Cup – Brazil Posts Double Win with Simultaneous Soy Boom and Deforestation Drop”
Source: The New York Times - June 5th, 2014
Web link: http://dotearth.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/06/05/forget-the-world-cup-brazil-posts-double-win-with-simultaneous-soy-boom-and-deforestation-drop/?module=Search&mabReward=relbias%3Ar 3rd. Article:
Title: “Brazil says Amazon deforestation rose 28% in a year”
Source: BBC News (Latin America and Caribbean) – November 15th, 2013
Web Link: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-24950487 Course: Introduction to Geography Instructor: Sergei BasikStudent: RubricAssignment # 3: Article/Book Review% of Final Grade: 15 % Date: Lesson 12 Direction: * A three pages word article/book review worth 15% is due for Lesson 12. * The assignment will be reviewed ahead of time in class. * The assignment will NOT be accepted after Lesson 12. * It is an individual, not a group effort. You should decide on the article/book well ahead of time. * You have a choice of reviewing a book or a series of three journal or magazine articles focused on a similar geography topic. * Discuss your selection with the instructor before you begin. Any late assignments will have marks deducted from each class you are late, taken off the 15%. * An article/book review is NOT a book report which simply summarizes the content. Your review will be double spaced and minimum three pages long not including the cover page. * You must put the title of the book/article(s), author’s name, date published, publisher and number of pages on the cover page.Learning Outcomes: * Explain key concepts and introductory geographical themes. * Analyze the different areas of geographical inquiry and develop a broad awareness of the world we live in. * Describe the interactions between humans and the space around them. * Recognize the effects of human activities on our environment. * Apply primary geographical information such as that found in maps: interpretation of the landscape, scale, and urban features. * Compare and contrast the relationship of geographic concepts in Canadian society with other cultures and environments. * Apply the knowledge, problem solving, and analytical skills gained in this course to better understand future liberal arts and science courses. Evaluation: Introduction/ Description/Analysis & Conclusion 90%Grammar/Format 10% 100% | Part 1. (x 9) | Criteria | Minimal (1) | Basic (2) | Proficient (3) | Advanced (4) | Introduction/ Description/Analysis/Conclusion | The main points ofthe book/articles are notreviewedaccurately & / orthe student does notappear tounderstand thebook/article. Opinions are vagueor are notexplained /justified well.Reflectiondemonstrates littleor shallowreflection orconnections tocourse material.Lacks clearorganizationalplan. Statementsare unsupportedby any detailor explanation.Repetitious,incoherent,illogicaldevelopment. | The main points ofthe book/articles arereviewedaccurately, but thestudent does notappear to fullyunderstand thebook/article.Opinions are vagueor are notexplained /justified well.Reflectiondemonstrates littleor shallowreflection orconnections tocourse material. Logic ofargument isminimallyperceivable. | The book/articles is reviewedaccurately, butcould be morethorough. Thestudent may nothave demonstratedfull understanding.Opinions and examples are statedand explained /justified clearly. Content mayhave one ortwo factual errors.Reflectiondemonstratesreflection andmakes connections,but they may not be deep. | The book/articles is reviewedaccurately andthoroughly. Thestudent hasdemonstrated fullunderstanding.Opinions and examples are statedand explained /justified clearly. Content is factually correct. Supportingpoints arepresented in alogicalprogression.Responsedemonstrates ahigh degree ofdeep reflection andconnections tocourse material. | Maximum Score : 36 points = 90 % Actual Score: | Part 2. (x 1) | Criteria | Minimal (1) | Basic (2) | Proficient (3) | Advanced (4) | Grammar/Format | Errors inmechanics,grammar, and / ororganization to thepoint of distractionLimited vocabulary. Review is not double spaced and less than 2 pages long including the cover page. | Noticeable errorsin mechanics,grammar, and / or organization.Use ofscientificterminologyavoided. Review is double spaced and about 2 pages long including the cover page.. | Generally freefrom mechanical,grammatical, andorganizationalerrors.Accurate wordchoice. Review is double spaced and about 3 pages long including the cover page. | Uses scientificterminologyappropriatelyand correctly.No majorgrammatical or spelling errors.Review is double spaced and 3 pages long including the cover page. | Maximum Score : 4 points = 10 % Actual Score: | Total Actual Score and % of Final Grade: | Comments: |

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