Amazon rainforest
Amazon rainforest photo: Courtesy of Conservation International.

The Amazon rainforest is home to frogs, birds, and monkeys, and to hundreds of billions of trees.

Those trees absorb and store carbon, helping to counter climate change.

But over the past 50 years, nearly a fifth of the Amazon forest in Brazil has been cut down for farming, ranching, and logging. That’s an area larger than the state of Texas.

Rodrigo Medeiros is with the nonprofit Conservation International.

Medeiros: “We are working together with several organizations to restore the Amazon rainforest and thereby return to the planet and the people the forest that had been destroyed.”

The group plans to spread seeds from over 200 native species, including grasses and trees, across 70,000 acres.

Medeiros says this method is less expensive and time-intensive than planting individual saplings. And, he says, it will create a dense, diverse ecosystem.

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Medeiros: “And in five years, we have a well-established forest that continues to develop and become mature for the next 15, 20 years.”

Medeiros says this is just the beginning of reforestation efforts in Brazil. The country aims to restore nearly 30 million acres by 2030.

Reporting credit: Sarah Kennedy/ChavoBart Digital Media.

Bruce Lieberman

Bruce Lieberman, a long-time journalist, has covered climate change science, policy, and politics for nearly two decades. A newspaper reporter for 20 years, Bruce worked for The San Diego Union-Tribune...