Thursday, December 06, 2007

WWF: 60% of Amazon could be gone by 2030

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"The impacts of climate change plus deforestation could wipe out or severely damage nearly 60% of the Amazon forest by 2030 — making it impossible to keep global temperatures from reaching catastrophic levels, an environmental group said Thursday.

"'The importance of the Amazon forest for the globe's climate can not be underplayed,' said Daniel Nepstad, author of a new report by the WWF.

"'It's not only essential for cooling the world's temperature, but also such a large source of fresh water that it may be enough to influence some of the great ocean currents, and on top of that, it's a massive store of carbon.'

"Sprawling over 1.6 million square miles, the Amazon covers nearly 60% of Brazil. Largely unexplored, it contains one-fifth of the world's fresh water and about 30% of the world's plant and animal species — many still undiscovered."
USA Today


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