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COP27: Amazon forest in crisis, Forest loss threatens the planet

Amazon forest in crisis; Deforestation is increasing in the forests of the Amazon, whose integrity may reach a point of no return, directly

By Ground report
New Update
COP27: Amazon forest in crisis, Forest loss threatens planet

Deforestation is increasing in the forests of the Amazon, whose integrity may reach a point of no return, directly affecting 47 million people and aggravating the global climate and biodiversity crises, warned a new report from the World Wildlife Fund (WWF).

Amazon forest in crisis

According to the WWF's "Living Amazon 2022" report, presented at the world climate summit in this Egyptian city, 18% of the Amazonian forests have been completely lost, another 17% are degraded and data from the first half of this year show the damage continues to grow.

The loss of the Amazon biome can directly affect the livelihoods of 477 million people living in that region spread over nine nations, including 511 different indigenous groups, as well as 10% of the planet's biodiversity, the WWF said.

The report was presented at the 27th Conference of the Parties (COP27) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, which brings together representatives of most of the world's governments in this city-spa on the shores of the Red Sea.

One of the consequences of the loss of the Amazon biome is that it would make impossible a central goal of climate summits, that of keeping global temperature rise below 1.5 degrees Celsius relative to the pre-industrial era (1850- 1900).

18% of forests lost

This objective cannot be met, according to the report, if the Amazon rainforest is lost, since its vegetation and soils store between 367 and 733 gigatons of carbon dioxide (CO2), the main greenhouse gas that warms the atmosphere.

Currently, of the 7 million square kilometres that comprise the Amazon, 18% of the forests have been lost and an additional 17% are degraded. In Brazil alone, which is home to 60% of the forest, more than 1,600,000 hectares were deforested in 2021, of which 59% corresponded to the Amazon. This coincides with a study by the University of Maryland that found that approximately two million hectares were lost last year among the nine Amazonian countries: 73% in Brazil, 10% in Bolivia, 8% in Peru and 6% In Colombia.

According to the Scientific Panel, with a possible loss of the Amazon biome, the Earth will not meet the objective of keeping warming to a maximum of 1.5°C, since the forest stores between 367 and 733 gigatons of carbon dioxide, which exceeds the carbon budget for this purpose.

Global Compact to protect amazon

The researchers warn that "the carbon stored for centuries in the Amazon is being released at an accelerated rate due to deforestation, fires and degradation due to unsustainable productive activities", which means, words more, words less, that without the Amazon There is a way to deal with the climate crisis.

Despite the critical point in which the biome is, the report indicates that it is still possible to take measures so that its destruction does not continue to advance. A first measure would be to establish a model of coexistence that respects biological diversity and the traditional territories and knowledge of the indigenous peoples that inhabit the jungle.

On the other hand, the report calls for governments, the private sector and citizens to act together by proposing a new pact in which the conservation of the Amazon "is a priority." In fact, in presenting the report, WWF called for a Global Compact to protect at least 80% of the forest.

For its part, Coica insisted on the initiative, supported by the Assembly of the International Union for Conservation of Nature, that by 2025 the actions and knowledge of indigenous peoples be recognized as "effective strategies" to achieve the goal of protecting that 80%.

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