The conference held in the United Kingdom early this month on climatic changes cautioned that the melting caused by global heating poses a threat to coastal cities, many of which could even vanish. Moreover, this phenomenon could force the redistribution of millions of people throughout the planet and diminish agricultural productivity.
“The studies show that for us Brazilians, there will be a change in the nature of the Amazon forest, transforming it from a tropical rain forest to scrubland. The impact could have serious consequences for our own species,” observed the direct of the Greenpeace campaign, Marcelo Furtado.
Global warming, referred to as the greenhouse effect, results from the large concentration of gases in the atmosphere. They alter the characteristics of the atmosphere, causing the quantity of heat retained by the planet to exceed levels that are considered normal.
According to researchers who study this question, the warming has been caused in large part by human activities and vehicular carbon dioxide (CO²) emissions.
In Brazil, deforestation is singled out as the greatest source of climatic irregularities. The 2005 Guinness Book of Records names the country as world titleholder in deforested area over the last 100 years.
According to Furtado, if the country ceased to produce all types of pollutant gases, it would still take 50 years to repair all the damage that has already been inflicted.
Nevertheless, Furtado affirms, some short-term measures are possible. Examples are the use of renewable energy sources, the elaboration and implementation of government policies to inhibit dirty technologies, and, most of all, orientation of the population.
“Evidently, the basic process of change must occur in the rich countries, where consumption is totally unsustainable,” Furtado emphasized.
Translation: David Silberstein
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