Recent news has broke that wildfires in the Amazon Rainforest are up a staggering 82% since January of this year, which is enough to jostle even the mainstream media into reporting on it.
It’s absurd to think the largest rainforest in the world, and one of the wettest places on the face of the Earth, is suffering from wildfires at all, but this is nothing new. In recent years, Brazil has been besieged by an uncharacteristic amount of fires.
This should be setting off alarms everywhere on Earth for an “all hands on deck” kind of situation. Yet, we’re only now hearing about this tragedy, as people have taken to social media in droves to sound the alert.
The Amazon Rainforest has been burning for weeks, but I'm only just hearing about it! Amazonia contains 20 percent of the world's fresh water and provides 20 percent of the air we breathe. As far as I can tell, Brazil has done nothing yet to stop the fires. #PrayforAmazonia pic.twitter.com/oHQCekPzmn
— sleepy af (@failcircuit) August 20, 2019
just to let yall know,, the amazon also previously known as "the lungs of earth" has been BURNING for 2-3 WEEKS STRAIGHT. if the amazon fully burns down, it'll permanently affect the environment. #PrayforAmazonia
— 𝗓𝗎𝗆𝗂 (@hw___nghyjn) August 20, 2019
The fact that the amazon rainforest is responsible for 20% of the ENTIRE WORLD’S clean air and it’s been burning for 3 weeks with literally no media coverage is terrifying. This is life or death for everyone and every animal. #PrayforAmazonia
— Belinda (@yourillus1onist) August 20, 2019
— André Só (@AndreLeSolo) August 20, 2019
The fact that most people are learning about this through Twitter and other social media outlets, and not the nightly news, is sickening and disheartening.
The Amazon burning is far more important than trade deficits, movie star drama, and whatever malarkey Trump happens to be blabbering about on any given day.
It’s not just about the oxygen, either.
While the Amazon Rainforest has been affectionately dubbed “the Lungs of the Earth,” this is a slight misnomer. The oxygen output of the Amazon is indeed important, but it’s nowhere near the top priority here.
There is far too much ignorance when it comes to environmental issues.
Habitat Loss and Ecological Balance
Arguably, the most important issue with these extreme wildfires is how it affects the worldwide ecological balance.
Understand that the world has remained somewhat the same for millions of years. The tides, air currents, glacier sizes and locations, forest sizes and locations. Ocean temperatures and depth. Fresh water acidity.
These things are what you might call ecological constants. They are the lynchpins of the environment and are what everything else relies on to function properly.
If these constants are thrown out of balance by even marginal amounts, it can spell dire consequences for ecological systems everywhere.
For example, just trace amounts of certain toxins in the air and on plants are likely liable for mass amounts of honeybees just dropping dead out of the sky.
Lake acidity increases brought on by human and factor farm waste flowing into fresh water sources can cause sexual dysfunction in fish and amphibians, kill microscopic organisms (which destroys the foodchain), and even render entire bodies of water uninhabitable due to lack of oxygen.
There are large portions of the world’s oceans and lakes that have become “dead zones,” where life no longer thrives.
The destruction of the Amazon Rainforest is one of those events that could forever change the Earth’s ecological balance for the next thousand or even ten thousand years, for the worse.
Countless species of plant and animal live in the Amazon. The forest itself is a massive carbon sink. The chain reaction that could occur from the degredation of the Amazon could alter the entire way the planet functions on a multitude of levels.
Everything is connected.
When it comes to the Earth and its systems, this goes doubly.
You cannot escape the fact that the planet itself is one giant interconnected and interdependent system.
Polluted seas in one area lead to dead fish on the other side of the world. A minute change in the amount of ice in one part of the Arctic can shift air currents and change migratory patterns.
We call it the Web of Life for a reason. Nothing lives or dies apart from the natural world, and humans are still a part of this system, for better or worse.
The Fight For Your Future
Are you prepared to give a damn about your own future and the future of your children?
This is not an abstract or fantastical question.
If rampant wildfires can occur in one of the wettest places on the planet, we really have reached a crisis point.
Millions of insect lives lost, plant species we may never discern the medicinal properties of, one of Earth’s most important carbon sinks damaged even further at a time when we need it more than ever.
The planet needs warriors.
People with an actual backbone, who will stand up to numbnut politicians, the rodeo clowns who run the oil and coal industries, special interest groups, religious fanatics, anti-environmental hucksters, and the general rabble of fatalist know-nothings who couldn’t care less about the fate of the planet.
You have to take interest in your own future, because no one else will.
Talk is extremely cheap right now. We need people on the front lines who are willing to protest, plant seeds, fund community gardens, support efforts to protect the rainforests and oceans, and above all else, fight against the fools in power who care more about profit than the Earth’s health.
How to Help The Environment Right Now
There are several ways to jump in and begin your journey as a warrior for the planet.
- Raise awareness. This is easy and crucial. Millions of people don’t even realize there is a problem to begin with. Spread the word on social media about environmental issues whenever possible.
- Send money to conservation funds with a good reputation, like this one.
- Join the #RiseAbove movement and begin planting seeds wherever and whenever possible.
- Use your town’s local Facebook page or group to organize community gardens or community park clean up days.
- Support green technology and stop using fossil fuels whenever possible.
- Stop putting barbaric morons in office. This includes both Republicans and Democrats. If a Democrat takes blood money from the oil industry, they are problematic at best. Do NOT support politicians that don’t care about the planet or our future. They are zombies.
- Begin protesting and marching. This might not be your cup of tea, but we need warriors on the front lines. March in the streets, yell in the faces of the kooks trying to steal your future. If you don’t fight for your own survival and the well-being of your future kids, who will?
- Go vegan. Animal agriculture is the leading cause of climate change (NOT fossil fuel use). This is huge, given that the biggest threat to the Amazon Rainforest is destruction by the animal agriculture industry to make room for cattle ranches. The desire for beef is literally robbing us of our future, and we’re not even supposed to be eating it in the first place.
- Encourage others to do join the fight. More people need to be informed, and more people need to rise up and fight.
Our society is very narcissistic, in the sense that nothing seems to matter until its personal.
Oh sure, many will look at the burning of the Amazon as a tragedy, but they will shrug their shoulders and move on. “That’s half a world away, it doesn’t concern me.”
But the thing is, it’s already personal.
All of it.
Your future depends on the health of the planet. We’re talking food shortages from lack of bee pollination, droughts, wars over fresh water and arable land. Hotter summers with more crazy weather patterns, super storms, tornadoes. Beachfront property in the billions wiped off the face of the planet. Common fish and crustaceans going extinct. Mass human migrations as some countries become uninhabitable.
This is all already happening.
If it’s not personal for you yet, it’s because you’re not paying enough attention.
Don’t be that person sitting on the sidelines of your own life just letting things happen around you.
Become a warrior. Stand up and fight.