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Scientists Warn Of “Cascading System Collapse” In Amazon Rainforest

As the Amazon Rainforest continues to
 as a consequence of cut-and-burn deforestation practices, we are gradually
coming close the point of no return. Over the last 50 years, about 20% of the
rainforest has been scorched or cut away, according
to The Intercept


As the recent fires continues and the policies
that led to them
 stay to exist, another 20%— that’s 300,000 square
miles — could soon be gone as well. At that point, researchers caution of a
“cascading system collapse,” in which the Amazon starts to totally crumble, and
discharge a planet-devastating
 of stored carbon in the process.

The Amazon rainforest used to be a major carbon sink,
meaning an area that kept massive stores of confiscated carbon from going into
and heating the atmosphere. But The Intercept reports
that the rainforest has already been  destroyed by
 to the point that the residual forest no longer makes up
for the amount of carbon that’s already been discharged.

If more gets cut or burned away, the subsequent
greenhouse gas releases would be equal to a “doomsday bomb,” to quote The
, that would not only lead to the crumbling of the rest of the
forest, but possibly also planet-wide environmental devastation.

“His project for the Amazon is agribusiness,” Francisco
Umanari, an indigenous Apurinã chief told The Intercept about
president Bolsonoro’s environmentally dangerous policies. “Unless he is
stopped, he’ll run over our rights and allow a giant invasion of the forest.
The land grabs are not new, but it’s become a question of life and death.”

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