The rainforest is also a carbon sink, which means it helps to remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Introduce the activity with a discussion about students’ local area and the organisms that live there. This activity works best in small groups. This article used information from El Comercio via the LatinReporters.com web site. Then trees and soils release water slowly. Forests transport large quantities of water into the atmosphere via plant transpiration. With rapid deforestation, it has been estimated that 20% of the Amazon rainforest has disappeared in the last 50 years, which has already led to detrimental effects to biodiversity and climate change. Rampant deforestation could cause many important rain forest habitats to disappear completely within the next hundred years. Distribute the Evidence-Based Argument about Protecting the Trees in the Amazon Rain Forest Rubric and discuss the rubric criteria as a class. As you watch, make note of the following: the causes of deforestation Help your students understand the impact humans have on the physical environment with these classroom resources. A space that allows students to move freely between these structures is needed. For this reason, deforestation has long term effects on the carbon cycle, climate and the environment. If a media asset is downloadable, a download button appears in the corner of the media viewer. Officials fear that low water problems will only worsen in coming years as more forest is cleared and glaciers in the Andes continue to retreat. due to: Changes made to the ecosystem affect all life that lives there, but for the endangered or threatened populations, these changes could challenge their survival. This activity is intended to be conducted in three, 50-minute class periods: Day 1—students explore the map and construct knowledge about the water and nutrient cycles and the organisms that live in different landscapes of the forest; Day 2—students construct arguments; Day 3—students present arguments. All rights reserved. Watch CNN explain deforestation in the video below. At the confluence of the Itaya and the Amazon, downstream from Iquitos, river depths have fallen from the normal 49 feet (15 meters) to as shallow as 3 feet (80 cm) in places. all the different kinds of living organisms within a given area. Development is encroaching on rain forest habitats from all sides. The impact on the Amazon, when combined with deforestation, could be devestating to the region’s climate, water cycle and economy. Local officials are blaming deforestation of the upper reaches of the Amazon in the Andes for the fall in river levels. This functions like a sponge. google_color_bg = "FFFFFF"; Use the provided answer key to check students’ completed Role of Trees in the Amazon worksheets. This activity targets the following skills: The resources are also available at the top of the page. Construct knowledge about the role of trees in the Amazon ecosystem. For thousands of years, humans have modified the physical environment by clearing land for agriculture or damming streams to store and divert water. Washington, DC 20036, National Geographic Society is a 501 (c)(3) organization. It also intensifies the extreme events that affect the river, like drought and flooding. Forests transport large quantities of water into the atmosphere via plant transpiration. Gilvan Sampaio of the National Institute of Space Research said the north Atlantic was slightly warmer than usual, which had shifted the tropical weather system further north. For reference, the Amazon’s daily freshwater discharge into the Atlantic is enough to supply New York City’s freshwater needs for nine years. The Amazon River is the most voluminous river on Earth, eleven times the volume of the Mississippi, and drains an area equivalent in size to the United States. Ask: Where would the carbon go? grouping of tall evergreen trees, usually close to the Equator, which receives more than 203 centimeters (80 inches) of rain a year. Conclude with a whole-class discussion reflecting on the potential loss of plants and animals in the Amazon rain forest and the potential changes to the water and nutrient cycles due to deforestation.
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