The Amazon - Bio-Diversity - Deforestation - The Rainforest - Peru - Pucalpa.

What can you do?

First you can find out about international and national organisations concerned with saving the Rainforests, their animals and the people who live there.

Use your resources and those in the learning centre/library to find out about these organisations; what they do, where they are and contact them for further information and details and ideas about the contribution you can make.

Find out about:
  • The WorldWide Fund for Nature (WWF), WorldWide Fund in Canada & USA, Friends of the Earth, Greenpeace, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN), and UNESCO, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation, have all been very involved in supporting plans to arrest deforestation.
  • Survival International is a worldwide organisation which helps tribal people.
  • The International Council for Bird Preservation (ICBP), works to save endangered birds.
  • Foundation Amazonie, was set up in September 1991 by Belgian film-maker Jean-Pierre Dutillex. Donations towards the purchase of strips of rainforest in the upper Solimnoes River region of the Amazon Basin to create a national park three times the size of Belgium were invited - have they reached the £3 million / 5 million US$ needed?

Rainforest can be purchased and so protected through the Rainforest Action Group ( and they run an International Children's Rainforest Network (www.sierraclub).

Tropical Rainforest timbers are hardwoods. Temperate Forests are also being felled for similar industrial purposes - paper products, furniture etc. Think about all the items you use that are made from timber and that you dispose of: paper cups & plates, fast-food containers, disposal napkins & towels, writing paper & newsprint. Use your own shopping bag at the store instead of plastic carriers!

Think about recycling programmes and how you can contribute. Is there such a facility near you? How good are you at using it? Over the course of a week, make a note of the garbage / rubbish that you could/should recycle rather than just disposing of it in the rubbish bin. Not all of it will come from timber but much of it will be using non-replenished raw materials.

Think about other items you might purchase that come from rainforests: plants & animals - bromeliad houseplants, parrots & iguanas & other reptiles; shells & wooden souvenirs; furs & reptile skins; gold & precious metals used in jewellery are often mined in rainforest areas. Think about the effect your purchase could have had on the destruction of the rainforest.

Some people do not support companies which exploit and destroy rainforest. They refuse to buy / boycott their products. They consider that if everyone unites, company revenues will go down and there will be less profits and so the company will reconsider its practices. Consumer power is very influential and many companies and organisations have recognised the importance of protecting the rainforests. In 1989, Friends of the Earth launched a Rain Forests: protect them! campaign. In 1989, 100 British companies, including Body Shop & Habitat, agreed to stop using hardwoods unless they came from properly managed forests. Find out what is happening now in the UK and in the USA.

Remember, knowledge is power. Find out what is happening. Find out who the key players are in changing the negative practices. Can you change what is taking place - even by the smallest amount? Every little helps.

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