The Amazon rainforest has passed the point of no return


Every day that passes seems to want to put the Amazon jungle in more and more danger. According to a new report, with 26% of the surface at least severely degraded, even now it would have crossed its point of no return. Billions of trees. Millions of different insects insects. Birds and reptiles reptiles. Mammals too. The Amazon is a true biodiversity treasure. A treasure that seems more important than ever to preserve in the context of global warming. But a report released in early September 2022 by indigenous indigenous leaders suggests that the Amazon rainforest has already reached its tipping point. Remember that, according to the GiecGiec, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), a tipping point corresponds to a “critical point”. threshold beyond which a system is reorganized, often brutally and/or irreversibly.” It’s like the time you remove the wrong brick from a tower in Jenga and it collapses! In the case of the Amazon rainforest, scientists have long been concerned about the combined effects of deforestation, deforestation and global warming. A day would come when he could no longer maintain his climate. Then it would become a savannah. With less imposing trees, poorer biodiversity, biodiversity and less carbon storage capacity. From tropical forest to savanna It would come one day, the researchers said again in 2021. And even earlier this year 2022. But according to the report published a few days ago, that day has arrived. Especially since data on the state of forest cover collected between 1985 and 2020 show that 26% of the Amazon rainforest has been lost (20%) or is now in an advanced state of degradation (6%). However, in 2018, experts announced that the tipping point of the Amazon was… between 20 and 25% of the area destroyed!Analysis of other data shows the effects of deforestation. Precipitation precipitation that has already decreased by 17% during the last 20 years next to Bolivia. With an increase in temperature of +1.1 °C. And a region that is already evolving into a savannah. In the southern Amazon, the dry season now lasts four to five months. That is five weeks more than in 1999. In five to six months, the forest would not survive. The experts call for the rapid restoration of at least 6% of the Amazon forest – or 54 million hectares –, the equivalent of the current very degraded surface. Between the roads, the oil industry and the mining industry that degrade the forest. Road construction projects that threaten their integrity. But according to a very recent study, it is mainly agricultural projects that need to be reviewed. In fact, 90-99% of all deforestation in the tropics is directly or indirectly caused by agriculture. Although “only” half or two thirds result in an expansion of production. Illegal deforestation in the Amazon: a sad record of more than 3,500 fires detected in one month, the National Research Institute Brazil’s Space Agency (INPE) has identified no less than 12,133 fires in the Amazon. That’s more than two-thirds of the total for September 2021. And it comes after the worst August in the field in twelve years. It must be said that since Jair Bolsonaro came to power in 2019, deforestation of the Amazon rainforest in the country has increased by 75% compared to the previous decade. The Amazon rainforest is about to break The Amazon rainforest is under threat. Through global warming and through deforestation operations that weaken it. Researchers confirm this today. They provide direct empirical evidence that the Amazon rainforest is losing its resilience. And it is, therefore, dangerously close to its tipping point. Article by Nathalie Mayer Nathalie Mayer published on 13/03/2022 Last January, the figures of the National Institute of Space Research of Brazil (Inpe ) alerted us once again. The Brazilian Amazon had just lost 430 square kilometers of forest in that month alone. To give you an idea, know that this represents about four times the area of ​​the city of Paris. But above all, it is no less than… five times more than in January of last year. Although the government recently promised to control deforestation in the Amazon, remember that the Amazon forest is the largest tropical forest in the world. On its own, it even accounts for more than half of tropical forests. It is home to an invaluable biodiversity. Although it plays an important role in the Earth’s climate system. Because of its influence on the rainfall of an entire continent and because of the colossal amounts of carbon it stores. The Amazon rainforest is no longer a carbon sink Today, an international team of researchers publishes — as part of the project Tipping Points in the Earth System (TiPES), a project dedicated to the study of tipping points, a study that concludes that, since the early 2000s, more than three-quarters of the Amazon rainforest has lost its resilience. Understand, your ability to recover from any disturbance. Whether it’s a deforestation operation, a storm or a forest fire Global warming and deforestation The researchers get this result not from climate model predictions, but from in-depth statistical analysis. 30 years of satellite data of the region. The researchers worked particularly on what they call vegetation optical thickness, or VOC for vegetation optical depth, which gives them a fairly accurate idea of ​​how much biomass and water content plants have. An indicator that betrays the efficiency with which the vegetation recovers from a disturbance. And so they observed more pronounced losses of resilience in the drier areas. But also in regions located within a radius of about 200 kilometers from human settlements The Amazon threatens to disappear in 50 years The study reveals that this loss of resilience is bringing the Amazon rainforest closer to its tipping point. The point at which the ecosystem of the ecosystem would undergo an abrupt change. She points to what researchers call a critical slowdown in ecosystem dynamics. A slowdown is still observed in the data characterizing the biomass and greenness of the forest. A deceleration that indicates a weakening of the restorative forces capable of bringing the forest to its equilibrium after savanna-type disturbances. And while researchers remain unable to predict when that change might occur, they nonetheless believe that the point of no return has probably not yet been passed. That, therefore, it is always possible to avoid the worst.. Did you know that the “savanization” of the Amazon forest could cause the emission of 90 gigatons of CO2. The equivalent of more than double the global emissions of a year. With the consequences we imagine on global warming. How? Acting on the areas that this work identifies as most threatened. The driest areas and the areas most marked by human presence. As climate models, climate models show that global warming will dry out the region, there is also an urgent need to limit our greenhouse gas emissions on this front to contain this climate change. And since our footprint harms the Amazon forest, it seems just as essential to drastically reduce logging in the region.
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