Amazon at a Tipping Point

February 21, 2018

Today, Science Advances published an editorial co-written by ABC founder Thomas E. Lovejoy and well-known Brazilian climate scientist Carlos Nobre.  In it, Dr. Lovejoy and Dr. Nobre elevate an issue with global impact that hasn't gotten much attention -- that deforestation in the Amazon rainforest is bringing the ecosystem to a tipping point:

 

"We believe that negative synergies between deforestation,

climate change, and widespread use of fire indicate a tipping

point for the Amazon system to flip to non-forest ecosystems in

eastern, southern and central Amazonia at 20-25% deforestation."

 

As they write in the editorial, the follow-on degradation of the region's rainforests and precipitation cycle could affect regional water supplies for human consumption and agriculture.  And they call for reforestation of the Amazon to create a margin of safety to prevent us from "discovering the precise tipping point by tipping it."

Read the editorial here: http://advances.sciencemag.org/content/4/2/eaat2340.

 

 

 

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