What many don’t know is that recent deforestation in the Peruvian Amazon has been driven by demand for gold. The price of gold is currently $1,467.76 per ounce at the time of writing, a dramatic increase from approximately $400 per ounce in 2000. Gold for jewelry is responsible for around 50 percent of global demand for gold.In the last eight years, more than 249 square miles of forest have been cleared for gold mining in the Peruvian Amazon with more than 70 square miles in the last two years (2017 and 2018).
The Amazon rainforest is a crucial life-support ecosystem. Without its wondrous strength and power to generate hydrologic systems across the sky (as far north as Iowa), absorb and store carbon (CO2), and its miraculous life-giving endless supply of oxygen, civilization would cease to exist beyond scattered tribes, here and there. More
The two-week marathon of the annual UN climate conference is underway in Madrid, and the world’s expectations have perhaps never been lower. The Amazon is burning and unprecedented storms are raging worldwide, but the world’s climate diplomats are still mostly talking business-as-usual. Never mind that this year’s 25th Conference of Parties (COP) to the UN More
Money can’t buy everything!
One result of Jair Bolsonaro’s presidency is that there are more eyes on the forest: of those wanting to steal it, but also of those wanting to protect it. It’s buzzing with all the attention, and the fatal fires now ravaging vast areas are now drawing many more. All these eyes on the Amazon are provoking fights, grabbing headlines and building resistance. All of us can be allies in this resistance, but we will never truly know what people like the Guardians of the Amazon face on a daily basis. More
During August thousands of fires ravaged the Amazon rainforest in Brazil and Bolivia. Some are still burning. In the wet ecosystem of the rainforest fires are not a natural phenomenon, they are started by people, mostly well-organized criminal gangs that profit from illegal logging and land clearance. Brazil’s right-wing President, Jain Bolsanaro, took office in More
The 2019 G7 summit in Biarritz unnecessarily handed Brazil’s Neofascist Bolsonaro a propaganda coup with which to rally his dwindling support. With his approval falling to record lows and facing international attacks of unprecedented intensity, their colonial-sounding rhetoric allowed him to appear heroically nationalistic, a defender of Brazilian sovereignty over the Amazon, when in reality he and his government are fully geared to serve the interests of foreign capital in true comprador tradition.
As fires rage across the Amazon in South America, a result of exploitation by agro-capitalists, Cuba has actually increased the percentage of its country covered by forest in the past year. A report published on Wednesday by Cuban media outlet Granma, reports the increase in forested area and examines how state environmental policies achieved it. The report also illustrates how today, Cuba’s forested area has almost tripled in the socialist period since 1959, despite mass deforestation in every other part of the world.
“Money is the universal self-established value of all things. It has, therefore, robbed the whole world – both the world of men and nature – of its specific value.” – Karl Marx (1843)From space, in various satellite images, you can see the columns of smoke and suspended particles, ascending above the matrix of the most extensive and biologically diverse tropical forest in the world: the Amazon.