How does science inform policymakers about Amazon protection issues?
Scientists play a very important role in supporting the decision, in particular by providing evidence of the severe deterioration that the Amazon has experienced in recent years. This data is difficult to come by due to the complexity of the Amazon Basin, which includes eight different countries, each with different protocols and sometimes interests.
On the one hand, science has the power to show what consequences deforestation can have and can offer tools and solutions. For me, these are the great challenges for scientists in terms of public policy.
To give you an example, the scientific community is calling for an end to commercial practices that encourage deforestation. Several scientific publications have shown that if deforestation in the Amazon reaches a point of no return, the rainforest ecosystem will be modified and replaced by a savanna-like ecosystem, more adapted to dry and hot conditions. This development will be due to accelerated climate change through deforestation, which some parts of the Amazon rainforest are already experiencing. If this modification extends to a larger scale, it will have consequences at the global level, particularly in hydrological balances, but also in biochemical balance. Deforestation of the Amazon will have consequences for the entire tropical region but also for the entire planet.
All of these items were given to the authorities to help in political decision-making.
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