Rainforest Preservation

Rainforest Tribe Awareness Rainforests have been on this planet for four hundred million years. They help out the earth by producing oxygen and disposing of carbon dioxide for our planet. By sucking up all of the carbon dioxide, the pollution on the planet is a lot lower than what it could be. The rainforests help maintain a balanced climate and without them global warming would increase. They hold many species of plants and animals and by destroying them we are killing possible cures to diseases as well as endangered animals we never knew existed.
Companies and corporations, however, are taking down these rainforests at the rate of six thousand acres a day. At a progression like that how are we supposed to keep rainforests alive on this planet? The companies use the extra space from the newly harvested trees for cattle farms. Shockingly, the trees taken from the rainforest are mostly sold to the United Sates for hard wood flooring. Probably the most startling part about destroying rainforests, however, is that we are killing the native and primitive tribes that still exist there.
The indigenous tribes of the Amazon Rainforest have lived there since ancient times and are the most primitive group of people still alive in the twenty first century. Normal traditional tribes say to preserve the nature that’s in the forest and learn from what it has to teach us. Is desolating the rainforests and taking the native tribes land and using it as flooring in our homes ethical? I believe that something so unique and special needs to be preserved and cherished and not used for something so impractical.
Even though rainforests are harvested for lumber and turned into cattle fields which can make an abundance of money, rainforests should not be destroyed because of the people that are living in them will die and suffer which is not tolerable because they are human beings as well and we can learn a lot from them about archaic times. First, Indians definitely want to maintain their isolation from the real world, especially the tribes in Peru. When civilized people try to communicate with them I can imagine that they become seriously confused. They’ve never seen cameras, hiking boots or backpacks.
Some tribes have never even heard the English language before. For these groups of Indians to survive in future generations, the Peruvian Government needs to stop the logging and destruction of the land that is on the Indians property. If this continues and the rainforest in Peru becomes completely annihilated, then chances are we are also wiping out the Indian tribes. Leaving these Indians in isolation seems like the best idea to me. As of right now, the tribes live as if it were the primitive days when cave men were just starting to evolve.
Some tribes are so primitive that they still only use sticks and rocks as there tools to make everything with. For example, instead of wearing brand name material clothes they make all of it themselves, including tools, baskets and so on just out of leaves, sticks and straw. They are very slow evolving tribes. Some only just discovered the wheel which is amazing and is proof to how primitive they are. They are so old fashioned that they don’t even have a number system besides one and two. Time is another fascinating item in indigenous Indian history. Their sense of time is extremely close to civilized nations.
As of today, even the United States uses the Mayan calendar up to a point. It’s interesting to see how different cultures evolve and how some became highly advanced while others still live in the stone ages. “The men make bow and arrow, used for hunting and protection against threats to their people (Section 2 Freddy). ” Since there is no such thing as a hospital for them, the rainforest is their main medical cabinet. They use whatever they can in the rainforest to survive. Also, many people are beginning to mention how the problem and the solution to rainforest destruction are both economic.
The Rainforest is being destroyed for things like timber, cattle, and agriculture, but those things cannot sustain people for very long, so there is no point in taking them anyway. By destroying the rainforest it is affecting the people who live there. Other people make comments like “if the Government is giving a good reason not to destroy the rainforest then it could be saved, but as of right now it looks like we are on a road of destruction (Section 1 Company Information). ” The local tribes of the rainforest harvest medicinal plants, fruits, nuts and oils and sell them to local places for some money.
By destroying the rainforest you are in turn hurting the people that thrive off of it. If we continue to destroy the rainforest we may destroy an extremely important plant that the tribes use to cure an illness. We still need to find the cure for AIDS, cancer, diabetes, arthritis and Alzheimer’s disease. “Scientists predict that since the number of acres lost is so huge that around 130 species of plants and animals become extinct every single day. This means that we have probably already lost cures to diseases and illness’s (Section 1 Company Information). A tribe called the Yanomami smoke a hallucinogenic drug called yopo. Yopo is made up of leaves and vines and grinded together to be smoked. “Smoking it is painful at first until the hallucinogen kicks in (Hands around the World). ” The Yanomami make up dances to what they are seeing and believe it is the spirit world. Dancing and rituals are very important to the Yanomami. They dance about their past, future, and to tell stories. How these people are more in touch with nature instead of electronics, like most civilized groups of people are baffles me.
In the 1990’s, there was a survival campaign after half a tribe of Nahua indigenous Indians were wiped out due to Peru continuously going into the rainforest for oil exploration, logging, and natural resource extraction. Thankfully, the campaign seemed to work quite well. However, since the campaign, the Indians are safe and away from people. As long as the government recognizes that they have to help these people by stopping the destruction of rainforests then everything should work out in the end. Jeff Tollefson is a reporter for the Nature Magazine.
He travels around to different places including rainforests to report to people about what is going on there. On several occasions, Tollefson has visited the Amazon Rainforest to report on it. When he first visited it he reported on deforestation. He concluded that “deforestation causes fifteen percent of global greenhouse gas emissions and seventy five percent of Brazil’s (Section Deforestation). ” Fortunately, a new law came around that says that land owners have to keep forest on eighty percent of the land. They will however, give exemptions to smaller land owners.
Jeff adds that “if people don’t obey the law that there may be a new wave of deforestation (Section Law). ” This could definitely lead to future problems, for example, killing off native tribes that live around the area that is being destroyed. Luckily, Brazil has begun a new Forest Code which now is being enforced very strictly. According to the new and updated code, trees can’t be cut down on property that is owned by the government. This is going to be very helpful for any tribe living in the forest, as long as the code is followed. Nevertheless, people are still not obeying it, which is unfortunate.
Keeping people from cutting down Amazon Rainforest trees should become one of Brazil’s main goals. If they can accomplish that then we can keep tribes, plants, and animals from going extinct and lower greenhouse gas emissions at the same time. As of right now, Brazil is working on a plan to keep the Amazon Rainforest safe and out of harm’s way. Unfortunately, Brazil, along with fifteen other countries have been given proposals and ideas by people who want to keep the rainforest from being destroyed, however, these proposals contradict what Brazil is already doing. Brazil is becoming an economic superpower by harvesting lumber and timber from the forests’ (Rhett Butler). ” They are in between deciding whether they should stop cutting down trees all together or not. A professor at University of Colorado named William Boyd said that “Brazil is not interested in giving industrialized countries cheap carbon credits from protecting the Amazon if they are not going to stop building coal-fired power plants (Rhett Butler). ” Boyd works for REDD, a company that is cutting down the Amazon trees.
REDD says that they are aware that by cutting down these trees my pose a possible threat to a climate change. Brazil did release a plan recently to reduce deforestation emissions by seventy percent. The plan went into affected in 1996 and stopped in 2005. To fund this program the President of Brazil planned on using donations from people and companies. So far the plan has worked really well. “Emissions are down from over half of what they were (Rhett Butler). ” This means that deforestation is getting reduced some as well. Since emissions are down, tribes in the forest will not be suffering as much as they used to.
Amazingly, the Amazon Rainforest used to have many Indians and tribes, but unfortunately due to colonization, diseases, and forced labor these tribes have been diminished from what they used to be. There are around two hundred indigenous tribes are still left in the Amazon Rainforest, with one hundred and eighty of them speaking a different language. Despite their differences, most of these tribes come together every year in the summer to celebrate their dead in a festival called the Kuarap. During this festival the Indians dance, practice rituals and games.
Depending on the tribe leader, some outsiders are allowed to view this amazing festival. The Kuarup is held within the rainforest, so if the rainforest is gone where are they supposed to have it? Something that is so sacred to these people could just vanish in an instant if we keep demolishing the rainforest. Fortunately, the indigenous tribe’s numbers are increasing slightly. Recent studies have shown that this is because the Brazilian Government has issued a single policy that states to just leave the tribes alone as they wish. Apparently it seems to be helping since their numbers are cumulating.
The Brazilian Government is deciding on whether to set up an Indigenous Protected Area in which all the tribes can live without having to deal with outsiders. This brings up the question, is that a good idea? Having all the tribes in a confined space could cause problems between them due to territory and things like that. Also, many of the tribes are dangerous and will attack if they feel threatened by an outsider. “The population within an Indian tribe can vary from two hundred to thirty thousand”, which just shows that you do not want to mess with a large group. The Indians are not afraid to kidnap if they have to.
And this has happened before. There is a novel called Yanoa? ma: The Narrative of a White Girl Kidnapped by Amazonian Indians. This book is a story of a girl, Helena Valero, that got kidnapped by the Yanoama Indians who live in the Amazon rainforest. “The girl was captured when she was twelve because she and her father were attacked by the Indians (Valero pg 23). ” They accidentally came upon a large group and took Helena as almost a “prize won” of some sorts. Throughout the book Helena goes through some extremely tough times in which she would sometimes rather die than be stuck in her hard situation.
Once she got the chance, however, Helena escaped. She decided, however, not to go back to civilization since it had been such a long amount of time. “She lived by herself in the forest for seven months before she came across another tribe where she met her first husband Fusiwe”, who was the leader of the tribe. After a good amount of time had passed, Helena had a few sons with Fusiwe, but “their love was cut short because Fusiwe died. ” A fellow tribe member wanted his leader position and was faster and stronger than him so murdered him.
After his death her life was under threat because the new tribe leader believed that her sons would grow up and take advantage of their father’s old position. Once again poor Helena had to leave her home and find somewhere else. Luckily she was accepted quickly into another tribe who was more peaceful then the last. She remarried and had another two children. This time however, her new husband mistreated her so she decided to move back with society. After moving back with the civilized people “no one took care of her because of how changed and different she was. She may have had white skin on the outside, but her behavior was nowhere near acceptable to other people. Since she was in this situation she would starve a lot of the time because she had no money to buy food for herself. Eventually, Helena came to the conclusion that living with the Indians would be better then living with the society, so she decided to head back into the jungle to find her old tribe. “After forty years of living with them, she became old and blind. ” Helena became very respected by her fellow Indians once she was in her older years. Her journey was unbelievable and made her a strong person.
Helena came to love the rainforest and made the right decision by going back. Protecting the rainforest may not have been one of her goals; however she did protect it without noticing. By getting kidnapped this made others daunted and distressed to go back into the rainforest. Since no one was setting foot in the forest it was untouched for awhile, keeping it safe. As of right now, however, it seems there are many ways to get into the forest without people knowing. For example, some products made out of the rainforest wood are pointless little gift boxes that can easily be lost or stolen.
There’s websites up at this very moment that are selling patio furniture and arbours, which keep you from the shade. I find this extremely ironic because don’t rainforest trees already keep you from the shade? So why cut them down? There is a brighter side to this entire situation. Of course since it costs big bucks to get these trees brought into the United States, selling them at high prices isn’t a problem. This is helpful because this means that only rich folk with lots of money and no respect for the Earth will buy anything like arbours or patio furniture made of rainforest wood.
In fact the process of cutting down rainforests isn’t pretty either. Bulldozing down all those trees won’t help anything. I believe that there is a solution to cutting down trees and harming the nature and people who live there. As of now to help the rainforest you can donate, join a group or even a campaign to try and help out. One of the biggest and first campaigns to “Save the Rainforest” was done in the nineties and was because of the fast food place, Burger King. The man Paul Chandler was one of the main credible men for this campaign.
Burger King was importing beef from tropical areas and once the news found out it was all over. “Sales drastically dropped and Burger King cancelled thirty-five million dollars worth of beef contracts (Section About RAN). ” By getting the media involved people began to notice the rainforest again. More protests started and other fast food restaurants were checked to see where their beef was coming from. This was a huge step in starting to help rainforests and soon another huge step will come. Paul is visiting Brazil and is against all the logging that they are doing and is attempting to start another campaign.
Preserving the rainforest is one of the most important things we can do. Since the Amazon Rainforest is so far away, helping it from the United States does seem problematic. However, I think there are a few solutions to helping it. On my own time, I decided to help my community pick up liter along the highway. Picking up liter along a highway was quite an experience. I ended up picking up liter with my church because they have a community service program. I decided to work with this church because I used to go to it all the time when I lived at home with my parents.
My supervisor was my Pastor John Buchner. I asked him what he thought of me doing this to help the tribes in the Amazon Rainforest and his response was “I think it’s a great idea to do something like this to help, not only your community but also the rainforest. It’s spreading awareness about an issue that I had never really considered. ” Littering our planet with McDonald’s bags and beer cans isn’t the right thing to do. I believe that littering is an effective way to help clean the environment because it makes our planet cleaner and not looking so trashy.
Although, if everyone did their own part in the first place and just didn’t liter at all, then we wouldn’t have to worry about littering, however this is not a realistic option. We will just have to pick up the liter that we see around. I have learned that many inconsiderate people liter and they don’t think about how it’s harming the Earth. Likewise, many people are killing the rainforest which is harming the Earth more than people realize. If we continue littering like this our planet will be destroyed, including the rainforests.
Future generations are going to pay for the inconsiderate people who have been littering. I feel like it’s easy to not liter. All you need to do is find a trashcan. A few things came to my attention while on this experience. For example, once everyone realizes what they have done to the planet it will most likely be too late to fix things, just like once the rainforest is gone it will be too late to fix things. Rainforests have been on this planet for four hundred million years. They support the life that lives on this planet we call home.
By destroying and obliterating hundreds of thousands of acres a day of rainforests, we are killing things we have yet to discover and that’s just a shame. Animals, plants and people all live on this planet together and rainforests support all of them by providing oxygen, food, shelter, medicine and many other things. Rainforest’s hold keys to many ancient civilizations because of all the tribes that still live within the forests. We can learn many things from these civilizations and that’s why I think they should be protected and saved because if we don’t attempt to save them now then they will be gone when we need them most.
Overall, I believe that there are multiple ways to save the rainforest tribes from becoming obliterated. We still have so much to learn from them about our past so we need to preserve them for as long as we can. The newly updated forest code which prevents people from cutting down government owned rainforest property is going to keep tribes safe, together and out of harm’s way. When civilized people come onto indigenous Indian land, the Indians get afraid and attack them because of how past intruders have treated them. At least this new code will help keep the Indians alive for a longer period of time.
Instead of buying rainforest hardwood floors from the United States, people should donate that money to organizations like REDD and RAN that will actually use that money to help save the tribes in the rainforest. We need to fight for these rainforests because they have so much to teach us. Helena, the girl captured by the Yanomami tribe, left the rainforest only to decide that she missed it and wanted to go back. However, if we kill off the last of the rainforest and its people then there is no going back and no second chances. This would be devastation to our planet.
If suddenly twenty percent of the world’s oxygen was gone then the existence of many things would disappear around the world. Plus, the rainforest produces many medicines for ill people. There are still a number of plants that have not been discovered in the rainforest and maybe one of those plants will cure cancer. Keeping the rainforest and the indigenous people who live there alive is an amazing goal and not possible to do on my own. If we want to keep the people who live in the rainforests alive, then were going to all have to work together to keep our planet healthy and help people understand why we need them so badly.
Work Cited Butler, Rhett A. “Brazil’s Plan to save the Amazon Rainforest. ” Conservation and Environmental Science News. 2 June 2009. Web. 22 Feb. 2012. <http://news. mongabay. com/2009/0602-brazil. html>. “Company Information. ” Wealth of the Rainforest. Carson City, NV, 1996. Web. 22 Feb. 2012. <http://www. rain-tree. com/>. Freddy. “Tribes of the Amazon Rainforest. ” HotelClub Hotel and Travel Blog. 20 Sept. 2007. Web. 22 Feb. 2012. <http://blog. hotelclub. com/tribes-of-the-amazon-rainforest/>. “Our Mission and History. ” Rainforest Action Network.
Web. 11 Apr. 2012. <http://ran. org/our-mission>. Valero, Helena, and Ettore Biocca. Yanoa? ma: The Narrative of a White Girl Kidnapped by Amazonian Indians. New York: Dutton, 1970. Print. “Hands Around the World. ” Native American Indian Cultures. Web. 22 Feb. 2012. <http://indian-cultures. com/Cultures/yanomamo. html>. Tollefson, Jeff. “Paying to Save the Rainforests. ” University of Northern Colorado Libraries The Source Catalog. Nature Publishing Group. Web. 03 Feb. 2012. http://0- search. proquest. com. source. unco. edu/docview/204495428/abstract>.

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