Amazon deforestations causes extinction and turns warming
Takacs ‘96 (David, The Idea Of Diversity: Philosophies Of Paradise, 1996, p. 200-1.)
So biodiversity keeps the world running. It has value and of itself, as well as for us. Raven, Erwin, and Wilson oblige us to think about the value of biodiversity for our own lives. The Ehrlichs’ rivet-popper trope makes this same point; by eliminating rivets, we play Russian roulette with global ecology and human futures: “It is likely that destruction of the rich complex of species in the Amazon basin could trigger rapid changes in global climate patterns. Agriculture remains heavily dependent on stable climate, and human beings remain heavily dependent on food. By the end of the century the extinction of perhaps a million species in the Amazon basin could have entrained famines in which a billion human beings perished. And if our species is very unlucky, the famines could lead to a thermonuclear war, which could extinguish civilization.” Elsewhere Ehrlich uses different particulars with no less drama: What then will happen if the current decimation of organic diversity continues? Crop yields will be more difficult to maintain in the face of climatic change, soil erosion , loss of dependable water supplies, decline of pollinators, and ever more serious assaults by pests. Conversion of productive land to wasteland will accelerate; deserts will continue their seemingly inexorable expansion. Air pollution will increase, and local climates will become harsher. Humanity will have to forgo many of the direct economic benefits it might have withdrawn from Earth's wellstocked genetic library. It might, for example, miss out on a cure for cancer; but that will make little difference. As ecosystem services falter, mortality from respiratory and epidemic disease, natural disasters, and especially famine will lower life expectancies to the point where cancer (largely a disease of the elderly) will be unimportant. Humanity will bring upon itself consequences depressingly similar to those expected from anuclear winter. Barring a nuclear conflict, it appears that civilization will disappear some time before the end of the next century - not with a bang but a whimper.
The Amazon is the lung of the earth—it is key to all biological functions.
O’Neal, 97 (Martin, “Rain Forest Depletion,” May 5, http://www.northern.wvnet.edu/%7Etdanford/bio1/RAINFO.htm)
There are some really amazing facts about the Amazon rain forest. The Amazon alone covers 54% of all the world's rain forests, thus making it literally the lungs of the Earth. We can say this because trees produce oxygen while they use carbon dioxide to maintain their respiration. Rain forests cover about 7% of the Earth's surface, but host about 50-90% of the plant and animal population of the entire world. The Amazon River has more species of fish than the entire Atlantic Ocean does. In less than 25 acres of rain forest there are more species of trees than the entire continent of North America. A tree found in Peru was found to be the host to 43 different species of ants. There are more species of birds on a Peru reserve than the entire United States has. A fact that is very highly regarded about the Amazon rain forest is that of the 3000 species of plants that have been discovered there, 70% of these plants have anti-cancerous properties. Also, 25% of these plants are now used to combat cancer. So as humankind continues to harvest the Amazon rain forest which covers 1.2 million acres and 9 countries, they should also try to consider the devastating effects that it is having on our race along with all the biological effects that it also carries. Although 1.2 million acres seems like a very large number, in the past four decades that number was reduced in half to the current figure, so we see that this can not keep happening with out some type of governing on what is occurring. If it does we may become an endangered species.
Impact – Disease
Amazon deforestation causes the releases thousands of airborne viral diseases
Chivian, 93 (International Labour Organization, http://www.ilo.org/encyclopedia/?doc&nd=857100187&nh=0&ssect=1)
Recently in Brazil, malaria has reached epidemic proportions as a consequence of massive settlement and environmental disruption of the Amazon basin. Largely under control in Brazil during the l960s, malaria has exploded 20 years later, with 560,000 cases reported in l988, 500,000 in Amazonia alone (Kingman l989). In large part, this epidemic was a consequence of the influx of huge numbers of people who had little or no immunity to malaria, who lived in make-shift shelters and wore little protective clothing. But it was also an outgrowth of their disturbing the environment of the rainforest, creating in their wake stagnant pools of water everywhere - from road construction, from silt runoff secondary to land clearing, and from open mining - pools where Anopheles darlingi, the most important malaria vector in the area, could multiply unchecked (Kingman l989). The story of “emerging” viral illnesses may hold valuable clues for understanding the effects of habitat destruction on human beings. Argentine haemorrhagic fever, for example, a painful viral disease having a mortality of between 3 and l5% (Sanford 1991) has occurred in epidemic proportions since l958 as a result of the widespread clearing of the pampas of central Argentina and the planting of corn (Kingman l989). The emerging viral illness which has had the greatest impact on human health, and which may be a harbinger of future viral outbreaks, is AIDS, caused by the human immunodeficiency virus - types l (HIV-l) and 2 (HIV-2). There is general agreement that the current AIDS epidemic originated from non-human primates in Africa, which have acted as natural, asymptomatic hosts and reservoirs for a family of immunodeficiency viruses (Allan l992). Good genetic evidence exists for the links of HIV-l to a simian immunodeficiency virus in African chimpanzees (Huet and Cheynier l990) and of HIV-2 to another simian virus in African sooty mangabeys (Hirsch and Olmsted l989; Gao and Yue l992). Are these cross-species viral transmissions from primates to humans the result of human encroachment into degraded forest environments? If this is the case, we may be witnessing with AIDS the beginning of a series of viral epidemics originating from tropical rainforests where there may be thousands of viruses that could infect humans, some of which may be as lethal as AIDS (approaching l00%) but spread more easily, for instance by airborne droplets. These potential viral diseases could become the most serious public health consequence from environmental disruption of the rainforests.
Release of these pathogens risk Human extinction—spread can happen within hours
Butler, 04 (Rhett, “Impact of Deforestation—Species Loss, Extinction, and Disease,” http://rainforests.mongabay.com/0904.htm)
The emergence of tropical diseases and outbreaks of new diseases, including nasty hemorrhagic fevers like ebola and lassa fever, are a subtle but serious impact of deforestation. With increased human presence in the rainforest, and exploiters pushing into deeper areas, man is encountering "new" microorganisms with behaviors unlike those previously known. As the primary hosts of these pathogens are eliminated or reduced through forest disturbance and degradation, disease can break out among humans. Although not unleashed yet, someday one of these microscopic killers could lead to a massive human die-off as deadly for our species as we have been for the species of the rainforest. Until then, local populations will continue to be menaced by mosquito-borne diseases like dengue fever, Rift Valley fever, and malaria, and water-borne diseases like cholera. Many emergent and resurgent diseases are directly linked to land alterations which bring humans in closer contact with such pathogens. For example, malaria and snailborne schistosomiasis have escalated because of the creation of artificial pools of water like dams, rice paddies, drainage ditches, irrigation canals, and puddles created by tractor treads. Malaria is a particular problem in deforested and degraded areas, though not in forested zones where there are few stagnant ground pools for mosquito breeding. These pools are most abundant in cleared regions and areas where tractors tear gashes in the earth. Malaria is already a major threat to indigenous peoples who have developed no resistance to the disease nor any access to antimalarial drugs. Malaria alone is cited as being responsible for killing an estimated 20 percent of the Yanomani in Brazil and Venezuela. Malaria—caused by unicelluar parasites transferred in the saliva of mosquitoes when they bite—is an especially frightening disease for its drug-resistant forms. Thanks to poor prescribing techniques on the part of doctors, there are now strains in Southeast Asia reputed to be resistant to more than 20 anti-malarial drugs. There is serious concern that global climate change will affect the distribution of malaria, which currently infects roughly 270 million people worldwide and kills 1-2 million a year— 430,000-680,000 children in sub-Saharan Africa alone. The outbreak of disease in the tropics does not affect only the people of those countries, since virtually any disease can be incubated for enough time to allow penetration into the temperate developed countries. For example, any Central African doctor infected with the ebola virus from a patient can board a plane and land in London within 10 hours. The virus could quickly spread, especially if airborne, among the city's population of 8 million. Additionally, every person at the airport who is exposed can unknowingly carry the pathogen home to their native countries around the world.
Impact – Laundry List
Precluding the destruction of the amazon is key to finding a cure for AIDS, preventing massive soil erosion, sea level rises, and global warming. The impact is extinction.
Allard, 02 (Ryan, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, “You Don’t Even Need Nuclear War,” Just Cut Down More Trees!” December 9, http://web.mit.edu/12.000/www/m2006/teams/furness/bombtheamazon.html)
The Amazon Rain Forest has been in existence for thousands of years (Rainforest Alliance, 1999) Ever since we knew how, we humans have been studying it, first for the sake of knowledge, but then, for medicines, discovery of new species etc. We have since learned that the Amazon supplies 20% (Raintree, 2002) of the world's oxygen and consumes poisonous carbon dioxide, in other words, the Amazon rain forest is necessary for life on Earth. The Amazon rain forest is home to half of the world's 30 million species of animal and plant life (Forests.org, 1994). Its importance stems not only from the fact that it produces a substantial fraction of the world's oxygen, which is vital for life, but also in the medicinal value of its flora and fauna. Already, 25% of western pharmaceuticals are derived from rain forest extracts (PBS, 1996) and we have only barely scratched the surface. Thousands of species of trees are becoming extinct every year before we have had the chance to test them. Numerous cures and/or treatments could be available in the forests, but we may never find cures for cancer or AIDS since the forests are being destroyed at an alarming rate. In addition, without the Amazon's trees, there would be nothing to hold the soil together, so rain and wind would easily remove the once protected soil. Erosion would be widespread in Brazil and the rivers would become even more silted than they currently are. Substances like mercury, while stable in the earth, become poisonous in water, and fish would accumulate them to pass on to organisms higher up in food chain, namely humans. The entire area may even suffer from desertification. Increased carbon dioxide levels enhance the Green-House Effect and we all should be aware of this process, publicized as Global Warming. Furthermore, the consequences of Global Warming, are dangerous enough to warrant thorough discussion on preventing them from occurring. These consequences include; reduction of usable dry land area due to rising of ocean levels and subsequent depletion in agriculture and probably flooding of cities. Innumerable deaths will be the outcome of these events, and with the same fate befalling other forests of the world, there will be two factors working against the existence of life as we know it; no land and no oxygen. The planet is on that doomed trail, and we know exactly where we will end; yet this issue is of the lowest priority to most large corporations and governments. These corporations are some of the biggest supporters of deforestation under the guise of 'Sustainable Development', although they are interested only in short term profit. Even the Brazilian government is willing to destroy the Amazon.
Impact – Warming
Amazon deforestation will speed up warming and disrupt global food production
Scientists say that at least 80% of the developed country's diet originated in the rainforests, and the harvests of these fruits, vegetables, spices, coffee and nuts are abundant. The grocery list includes avocados, oranges, lemons, bananas, pineapples, coconuts, mangos, tomatoes, corn, potatoes, rice, yams, black pepper, chocolate, cinnamon, ginger and cashews, just to name a few of the foods. In addition, as part of the rainforest ecosystem, more than 2,000 species of fish live in the freshwater Amazon Basin, which is more species than in the entire Atlantic Ocean. The soil erosion caused by the destruction of the forests will destroy the fish as well. In addition, deforestation contributes to global warming. As the rainforests are being cut down, there is a massive amount of carbon dioxide being released into the atmosphere emitting from what is left of the plants and trees. Global warming interferes with the balance of nature, which will affect the world's weather patterns and, in turn, will affect the growth of crops resulting in less food production. There are five regions in the world where rainforests are located: Central America, The Amazon, Africa, Southeast Asia and Australia. It is an enormous system covering over a billion acres, yet that acreage is only about 6% of the world's total lands. But as humans continue to recklessly interfere with nature, the consequences will be experienced worldwide.
The impact is extinction
Henderson, 06 (Bill, Countercurrents.org “Runaway Global Warming – Denial,” August 19, www.countercurrents.org/cc -henderson190806.htm)
The scientific debate about human induced global warming is over but policy makers - let alone the happily shopping general public - still seem to not understand the scope of the impending tragedy. Global warming isn't just warmer temperatures, heat waves, melting ice and threatened polar bears. Scientific understanding increasingly points to runaway global warming leading to human extinction. If impossibly Draconian security measures are not immediately put in place to keep further emissions of greenhouse gases out of the atmosphere we are looking at the death of billions, the end of civilization as we know it and in all probability the end of man's several million year old existence, along with the extinction of most flora and fauna beloved to man in the world we share. Runaway global warming: there are 'carbon bombs': carbon in soils, carbon in warming temperate and boreal forests and in a drought struck Amazon, methane in Arctic peat bogs and in methane hydrates melting in warming ocean waters. For several decades it has been hypothesized that rising temperatures from increased greenhouse gases in the atmosphere due to burning fossil fuels could be releasing some of and eventually all of these stored carbon stocks to add substantually more potent greenhouse gases to the atmosphere.
AT: Amazon Deforestation
No impact – no serious threat to Amazon
Morana and Washburn 2k, 6-26-2000Worldnet Daily, http://www.worldnetdaily.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.printable&pageId=4162
"The Amazon is actually the least endangered forest in the world," states Moore in American Investigator's television newsmagazine documentary, "Clear-cutting the myths," hosted by former CBS and CNN newsman Reid Collins. Moore explains that, in the 20 years of warnings about deforestation, "only 10 percent of the Amazon has been converted to date from what was original forest to agriculture and settlement." The finding that the Amazon rainforest threat is a myth based on bad science and political agendas -- especially by unlikely critics such as Moore, other scientists and inhabitants of the region -- is not expected to sit well with a movement that has enlisted schoolchildren throughout the United States and celebrities ranging from Sting to Alec Baldwin to Chevy Chase to Tom Jones and Tony Bennett. And which has also raised tens of millions of dollars for environmental activist groups. "This is where I really have a problem with modern-day environmentalism," says Moore. "Itconfuses opinion with what we know to be true, and disguises what are really political agendas with environmental rhetoric. The fact of the matter is:There is a larger percentage of the Amazon rain forest intact than there are most other forests in this world." Moore left Greenpeace, the organization he helped found, in 1986, after finding himself at odds with other leaders of the group. "We had already helped the world turn the corner on the environmental issues," he said. "Once a majority agrees with you, its time to stop beating them over the head and sit down with them and try to figure out some solutions." Yet, the notion that the Amazon jungles are threatened remains embedded in the popular culture: The 1993 animated feature, "Ferngully: The Last Rainforest," takes the Amazon's mystical charm literally, showing magical rainforest fairies fighting for their lives against industrialist's chainsaws and bulldozers. National Geographic's "Rainforest: Heroes of the High Frontier" warns that "despite efforts to save it, the rainforest is being consumed at an unprecedented rate." "Amazonia: A Celebration of Life" shows playful jungle animals being rudely awakened to the sound of chainsaws. The 1992 Sean Connery feature "Medicine Man" shows Connery discovering the cure for cancer at his makeshift lab in the heart of a burning Amazon rainforest. He loses the cure when developers raze his facility in order to build a road. Environmental groups from Greenpeace to the Sierra Club to the World Wilderness Foundation to the Environmental Defense Fund to the Smithsonian Institution conduct outreach efforts in the name of the rainforest.Dozens of other groups with names like Rainforest Relief, Rainforest Action Network and Rainforest Foundation were created for the sole purpose of exploiting the issue. A tourist to Brazil who picks up a "Lonely Planet" travel book will read numerous pleas for help: "Unless things change ... Indians will die with their forests," it pleads. "Invaluable, irreplaceable Amazon may be lost forever." "Lonely Planet" has company on the bookshelf: "At the current rate of deforestation," Vice President Gore writes in "Earth in the Balance," "Virtually all of the world's tropical rainforests will be gone partway though the next century."The scientific evidence paints a much brighter picture of deforestation in the Amazon. Looking at the NASA Landsat satellite images of the deforestation rates in the Amazon rainforest, about 12.5 percent has been cleared. Of the 12.5 percent, one half to one third of that is fallow, or in the process of regeneration, meaning that at any given moment up to 94 percent of the Amazon is left to nature. Even the Environmental Defense Fund and Sting's Rainforest Foundation concede, among the fine print,that the forest is nearly 90 percent intact. Philip Stott of the University of London and author of the new book, "Tropical Rainforests: Political and Hegemonic Myth-making," maintains that the environmental campaigns have lost perspective. "One of the simple, but very important, facts is thatthe rainforests have only been around for between 12,000 and 16,000 years," he says. "That sounds like a very long time, butin terms of the history of the earth, it's hardly a pinprick. The simple point is thatthere are now still -- despite what humans have done -- more rainforests today than there were 12,000 years ago." Moore maintains that "the rainforests of the Amazon, the Congo, Malaysia, Indonesia and a few other parts of the worldare the least endangered forests" because "they are the least suitable for human habitation."
No impact – Amazon resilient
Mongabay ’07 (9-5 “Brazil's threatened Atlantic forest may be more resilient than thought” http://news.mongabay.com/2007/0906-atlantic_forest.html)
The Atlantic forest of Brazil, one of the world's most threatened biodiversity hotspots, may have served as a critical refuge for biodiversity during the ice ages. The findings suggest that despite being reduced to just 8 percent of its original extent due to agriculture and urban expansion, the Atlantic forest may be capable of recovery. In other words, the Atlantic forestmay be more resilient to change than previously believed. The researchers, from the French Institut de Recherche Pour le Développement (IRD) and the University of São Paulo, used pollen records for three species of trees to determine changes in historic Atlantic forest cover. The study is published in French in the journal Diversity and Distributions and a press release from IRD follows.
No impact – Amazon not key
Morana and Washburn 2k, 6-26-2000Worldnet Daily, http://www.worldnetdaily.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.printable&pageId=4162
Another familiar claim of the environmentalist community is that the Amazon constitutes the "lungs of the earth," supplying one-fifth of the world's oxygen. But, according to Antonio Donato Nobre of INPE, and other eco-scientists, the Amazon consumes as much oxygen as it produces, and Stott says it may actually be a net user of oxygen. "In fact,because the trees fall down and decay, rainforests actually take in slightly more oxygen than they give out," says Stott. "The idea of them soaking up carbon dioxide and giving out oxygen is a myth. It's only fast-growing young trees that actually take up carbon dioxide." Stott maintains that thetropical forests of the world are "basically irrelevant" when it comes to regulating or influencing global weather. He explains that theoceans have a much greater impact."Most things that happen on land are mere blips to the system, basically insignificant," he says.