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Deforestation of the Amazon Rainforest It is simply a matter of time before there may no longer be an Amazon rainforest Numerous factors contribute to the forests destruction but the main threat is an economic one The dependence of the Brazilian citizens on wood from the countrys forest for fuel and export as well as income from mining in forest areas has resulted in deforestation of the Amazon Environmental activists and animal rights supporters from around the world have been attempting to raise awareness of the devastating results both to the environment and to endangered species The Amazon rainforest is located along the Amazon River in Brazil map Appendix 1 At 4000 miles long it is one of the longest in the world second only to the Nile River in Africa Seventeen of the Amazons tributaries are over 1000 miles long At some places the river is 300 miles across and it is so deep that ocean liners can travel 2300 miles up its length One fifth of the worlds fresh water is in the Amazon Basin and over 2000 types of fish have been found there Rainforest Facts 6 The river is the strongest driving force behind the forest itself The rainforest is home to countless living species and many natural resources such as gold uranium bauxite manganese cassiterite oil and gas Rainforest Facts 9 In addition to having many natural resources the Amazon Rainforest is home to 564 species of mammals 15 million species of insect 500000 species of plants and numerous types of micro organisms accounting for thirty percent of the worlds biodiversity Rainforest Action Network 1 Many of these species are endangered due to the massive deforestation of the rainforest Much of it is being cut down burned or severely damaged In 1970 1 percent of the rainforest in Brazil had been cleared By 2000 deforestation increased to 15 percent In 30 years rainforest land the size of France had
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