Speaking at the recent United Nations-sponsored Biodiversity Science Policy Conference in Paris, France, acclaimed tropical biologist Dr. Thomas Lovejoy warned that with 18% of the Amazon rainforest already gone, a cumulative loss of 20% will set forces in motion that reduce the forest just to one-third its original size within 65 years.
These research findings drew on the expertise of Japan's Meteorological Research Institute, the UK’s Exeter University, Brazil's Centre for Weather Forecasting and Climate Change, Germany's Potsdam Institute and Earth3000. Moreover, the study showed that the current combination of global warming, deforestation and forest fires are likely to undermine the Amazon's unique hydro-geological system whereby the forest self-generates at least half of its rainfall and also brings replenishing moisture to other regions.
Dr. Lovejoy's assessment affirms previous studies by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which warned that global warming would result in a 40% loss of this vital ecosystem.
Dr. Lovejoy and international scientist contributors, we thank you for your clear and cautionary message. In the narrow margin of time that remains, let us all work with renewed commitment to save our precious planet.
In her efforts to safeguard life on Earth, Supreme Master Ching Hai has frequently addressed the importance of conserving the rainforests, as in an October 2009 videoconference in Germany.