The Amazon is the largest tropical rainforest in the world and produces one-fifth of the planet’s oxygen. It is often called the “lungs of the world”, as more than 20 percent of the world’s oxygen is produced in the Amazon rainforest. There is no doubt that it plays a major role in reducing or preventing global warming.
The Amazon forest plays an important environmental role as a giant water engine. It releases water into the atmosphere and rivers. In fact, the weather systems are largely determined by currents of ocean that transport warm water from the equator to the polar regions, while cold water moves in the opposite direction. Without these currents, the temperatures will take a more extreme turn than they are today.
So, the burning of this tropical rainforest means this vital contribution to Earth’s climate equilibrium will reduce, and this in turn will lead to further warming, drought and climate change around the world. I believe that this is a real crisis for everyone and it does not matter if you live in Kuwait or Brazil or anywhere in the world. The issue is important for everyone because it threatens human, animal and plant life and the future of the planet.
Since the beginning of this year, these forests have been exposed to more than 75,000 fires, a record increase of 84 percent over the fires that broke out in these forests last year. European leaders have expressed concerns. French President Emmanuel Macron stated the fires are an international emergency. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson also said he was very concerned about the potentially catastrophic impact of the loss of a large number of trees on the environment. German Chancellor Angela Merkel described the fires as a serious emergency that would have an impact far beyond Brazil. That is a reason for all countries to support Brazil to overcome this crisis and prevent its recurrence in the future.
The fires have plunged the Brazilian city of Sao Paulo into total darkness in the afternoon and many organisms have died, whether by being suffocated or burned by fires. The globe will be severely affected in the coming years if this matter is not address properly and the real reasons behind their occurrence are not found.
I think that this environmental crisis may turn into a political one because there is a trade agreement at stake between the European Union and the South American bloc of Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay and Paraguay, and the occurrence of fires now may affect the ratification of the agreement as a number of heads of European groups have expressed concerns. But these countries have the potential to help Brazil cope with issue this to ensure greater environmental protection.
There are also a number of media statements and reports about climate change and advocacy by geological engineering techniques or so-called climate engineering. It aims to increase the amount of solar radiation reflected in space, but is not yet clear to all and some worry that it may lead to more drought and higher levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.
Some environment groups worry about a possible overlap of the interests of business, politics and industrial companies in this matter and exploitation to achieve interests unrelated to the climate. I believe that this issue calls for global attention, to be addressed in all its aspects. United Nations organizations and European countries must take the initiative to ensure the protection of the environment. I believe that the Arab world needs to raise awareness of the issue of environmental protection because it does not affect one country, but the entire planet and survival. Brazil needs full support now.
By Muna Al-Fuzai