Do you care about the Amazon Rainforest?

By: Halie Holland

As most of you have heard before, the Amazon rainforest was engulfed in flames. It took days before it even gained media attention. When a fire tore through Notre-Dame cathedral earlier this year, donations poured in excessively from across the globe. This generated more than one billion dollars, which was raised in just two days. The world was made aware of the tragedy within just three minutes, so why did it take so long for the media to react to Brazil’s environmental crisis?

The Planet’s so-called ‘lungs’ are being swallowed up in flames and people care more about an old building rather than the breath of the world. Quite a devastating statement people are putting out there with the current environmental crisis we have going on.

“In many parts of Brazil, there is strong support for President Jair Bolsonaro’s policy on the Amazon, which prioritizes economic development over environmental protections. These Brazilians argue that fire and deforestation are essential to keep small farmers and large ranches that export beef and soy to the world in business and that the damage they do to the world’s largest rainforest is modest.” 

Images of fires of the world’s largest rainforest have gone viral on Twitter, prompting the backlash and the trending of the hashtag #PrayforAmazonas, which has received more than 249,000 tweets.“I would rather see Notre Dame destroyed and see the Amazon forest protected forever,” tweeted one person.

The global outrage has been set off by the more than 26,000 forest fires recorded in the Amazon so far this month,– is the highest number in a decade. And it targeted Brazil’s controversial leader, Mr. Bolsonaro, who has promised to make it easier for industries to gain access to protected lands.

As the world’s largest rainforest, the Amazon is home to a fifth of the earth’s supply of freshwater, as well as serving as an important “carbon sink,” soaking up carbon dioxide and helping keep global temperatures from rising.

That has led many world leaders and environmentalists to see the Amazon as an invaluable piece of world heritage that must be “zealously conserved.”

 

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