What is the world’s largest rainforest?
The Amazon Basin
How many trees are in the Amazon?
How many different species are in the Amazon?
What proportion of the world’s carbon is stored as biomass in the Amazon?
How much area does the Amazon rainforest cover?
How many countries is the Amazon spread across?
How many tons of carbon is stored in the Amazon?
Between 80 and 120 billion tons.
What is the total carbon sink of all the tropical rainforests in the world?
By what percentage are tropical rainforests increasing their above ground biomass?
What is the rising productivity of tropical rainforests due to?
Sequestering increased CO2 concentrations.
Why is the fact that rainforests are increasing productivity an example of negative feedback?
It has offset rising atmospheric levels of CO2.
What is the Amazon losing its capacity for?
It is losing its capacity to absorb atmospheric CO2.
What has halved since the 1990s?
The net uptake of carbon by the Amazon.
What has been overtaken by fossil fuel emissions in Latin America for the first time?
The net uptake of the Amazon
What has led to a growth spurt for the Amazon’s trees?
An increase in atmospheric CO2
What is a negative effect of the tree growth spurt in the Amazon?
The trees live faster and die younger leading to a surge in the rate of trees dying across the Amazon.
What is the average discharge of water into the Atlantic Ocean by the Amazon? What percentage is this equivalent to?
15% of the fresh water entering the oceans each day.
Which Amazon tributary is the second largest river in the world in terms of water flow?
The Rio Negro
How deep is the Rio Negro?
How wide is the Rio Negro at its mouth?
Where is the mouth of Rio Negro?
What is the average yearly rainfall for the Amazon?
How much rain can fall in the northwest portion of the Amazon basin?
How much of the rainfall may never reach the ground?
Up to half
Why does some of the rainfall never reach the ground?
It is intercepted by the forest canopy and re-evaporated into the atmosphere.
How else can water be released into the atmosphere?
Transpiration from plant leaves
Where else can water be evaporated from?
The ground and rivers.
What percentage of water that is evapotranspired back into the atmosphere falls again as rain?
What percentage of rainfall actually reaches the sea?
Give an example of a water related closed system loop?
Not all water actually reaches the sea or the ground and is instead re-released back into the atmosphere.
At what rate was the Brazilian Amazon deforested by between 2000-2007?
19368km2 per year
Between 2000-2007 an area of forest the size of which country was destroyed?
Which country is the 4th largest climate polluter?
What are 75% of Brazil’s greenhouse gas emissions attributed to?
Deforestation and land use change
What is the removal of Brazilian Amazon mainly done by?
Slash and burn
What does slash and burn reduce the retention of?
Humidity in the soil’s top layer down to a depth of 1 metre.
What does slash and burn facilitate?
The sudden evaporation of water previously retained in the forest canopy.
What does slash and burn increase?
Albedo and temperature
What is albedo?
What else does slash and burn reduce? (to do with soil)
What is a problem with reduced soil porosity?
It causes faster rainfall drainage and erosion and silting of rivers and lakes.
What type of clouds are produced over deforested areas?
What type of cloud does not normally produce rain?
What 3 things do forests emit when they transpire?
What acts as condensation nuclei?
Salts and organic fibres
What do condensation nuclei do?
Assist in cloud and rain formation
What reduces rainfall and cloud formation?
The loss of salts and organic fibres which are condensation nuclei.
What would happen to the carbon if the store was destroyed?
It would be released into the atmosphere.
What is the topical rainforest generally replaced with?
What absorbs more solar radiation- forests or pasture land?
Forests absorb approximately 11% more solar radiation
What is the average temperature in the rainforest?
24.1 degrees C
What is the average temperature in pasture lands?
33 degrees C
What does the average temperature variation of Amazon forest soils at 20cm not exceed?
2.8 degrees C
What does the average temperature variation under pastures not exceed?
8 degrees C
What type of land has a lower moisture content level?
The moisture content in the upper 1m of pasture soil is 15% less than under nearby forest.
What can deeper forest roots pump?
More soil moisture to the surface.
What type of land produces more air humidity?
Forests produce 20-30% more air humidity than pastures.
How much more precipitation do forests produce compared to pasture lands?
What has the mean temperature increase in all tropical regions been every 10 years since the 1970s?
0.26 degrees C (+/- 0.05 degrees C)
By how many degrees C are temperatures in the Amazon expected to rise by 2050?
When did Amazonia experience falling amounts of rainfall?
Has there been a significant change in the amount of rainfall since the 1970s?
How many hectares of forest in the Amazon Basin were lost each year between 2000 and 2010?
3.6million hectares each year
What are the two causes of the loss of rainforest?
Deforestation and climate change
What can climate change effect in terms of the different species?
Species sustainability as some species are limited by their tolerance to temperature change, drought and seasonality.
Why does climate change have an impact on species sustainability?
It alters the conditions that are needed to grow and survive.
What climate related events have played a role in killing millions of trees?
Droughts and unusually high temperatures
Did tree mortality rates begin to increase before or after intense droughts started?
In what year was an intense drought?
What would happen to the Amazon if there was a 2degrees C temperature rise above pre-industrial levels?
20-40% of the Amazon would die off within 100 years
What would a 3 degrees C temperature rise above pre-industrial levels mean for the Amazon?
Over 75% of the forest would be destroyed by drought over the following century.
What percentage of the Amazon forest would be killed if temperatures rose by 4 degrees C above pre-industrial levels?
85% of the forest would die out.
How much carbon is stored in the upper 50cm layer of Amazonian soils?
How much carbon is stored in the upper 50cm of the soil layer in pasture lands?
What percentage of carbon is lost to the atmosphere when forests are cleared and burned?
What happens to any unburned vegetation?
It decays and the carbon is lost within 10 years.
What happens to the soil when forest clearance first occurs?
The soils are exposed to heavy tropical rainfall which rapidly washes away the topsoil and attacks the deep weathered layer below. Most of the soil is washed into rivers before the forest clearance has caused a reduction in rainfall.
What can changes in total precipitation, extreme rainfall events and seasonality do to river discharge?
Reduce river discharge
What can changes in total precipitation, extreme rainfall events and seasonality do to the amount of silt washed into rivers?
It will increase it and therefore disrupt river transport routes.
What can changes in total precipitation, extreme rainfall events and seasonality lead to?
What can changes in total precipitation, extreme rainfall events and seasonality do to the freshwater ecosystems?
What would happen if freshwater ecosystems were destroyed?
A source of protein and income would be removed for the local inhabitants.
What can changes in total precipitation, extreme rainfall events and seasonality to the water supply?
It could destroy it.
What would warming temperatures do to temperature dependent species?
What would warming temperatures do to biodiversity?
It would change the biodiversity of the ecosystem by introducing new species and killing others.
What would warming temperatures do to water-dissolved oxygen concentrations?
What would happen if water-dissolved oxygen concentrations reduced and why?
Eggs and larvae would be destroyed as they rely on oxygen for survival.
Give an example of a national park that has been created to try and mitigate the effects of environmental change in Amazonia
Tumucumaque National Park
How big is the Tumucumaque National Park?
3.84 million hectares
Give an example of a forest reserve that has been created to try and mitigate the effects of environmental change in Amazonia
Pará Rainforest reserve
How big is the Pará Rainforest reserve?
15 million hectares
What type of production could compete with ethanol production by sugar cane by 2030?
Forest biofuel production
In what year could forest biofuel production compete with ethanol from sugar cane?
Where does much of Brazil’s industrial (roundwood) timber come from?
What percentage of Brazilian forest area is reforested?
How can degraded forests be enriched?
By using native species.
What does ACTO stand for?
Amazon Cooperation Treaty Organisation
What does ACTO promote?
What is REDLACH?
The Latin American Technical Cooperation Network on Watershed Management
What does the TARAPOTO process help to achieve?
Harmonious forest development