Amazon: our green is turning to ashes

amazon river

Amazon Jungle, Brazil (Nathalia Segato, Unsplash)

This article was exclusively written for The European Sting by Ms. Eduarda Belasque Vriesmann, a twenty-one years old medical student from Brazil. She is affiliated to the International Federation of Medical Students Associations (IFMSA), cordial partner of The Sting. The opinions expressed in this piece belong strictly to the writer and do not necessarily reflect IFMSA’s view on the topic, nor The European Sting’s one.

The Amazon Rainforest is one of the richest biodiversity biomes in the world, composed of a set of ecosystems, but not unique to Brazil. Deforestation of this site has been gaining momentum since 1991 and has intensified in recent years.

Between 2017 and 2018 about 4,000 km2 of native forest was lost, and 76,620 outbreaks of fire/ burns have been detected by August 2019. But how can this affect our lives?

Burning represents an incomplete open air combustion that results in the emission of pollutants such as: carbon monoxide, matter particles, hydrocarbons, nitrogen oxides such as nitric oxide and nitrogen dioxide, among other components which are harmful when too much.

The effects for those near burns can range from poisoning, asphyxiation to death.

We inhale oxygen gas and exhale carbon dioxide, as there is an increase in carbon monoxide levels and a reduction in air oxygen levels, the most abundant carbon dioxide ends up competing with oxygen for hemoglobin binding.

Burning has been related to dermatological, ophthalmic, gastric and mainly respiratory diseases.

The gases emitted by fires also interfere with the greenhouse effect by intensifying global warming, which also negatively affects marine life, creating a deficit in the food chain. Therefore, it is important to note that global health is not just about people, it extends to the life of animals and plants.

For them to survive, just like us, it is necessary oxygen, water, light and food. And to save the planet, awareness of the reported facts must start immediately followed by actions to preserve the “Brazilian treasure” called the Amazon.


About the author

My name is Eduarda Belasque Vriesmann, I am twenty-one years old. I am Brazilian. I am a four- year medical student at UNINGÁ, Paraná, Brazil. I am a trainee at IFMSA BRAZIL-UNINGÁ, I am the vice president of UNINGÁ’s Gerenal Surgery Academic League; a member of Unicesumar’s Urgency, Emergency and trauma Academic League and also a member of UNINGÁ’s Sports Medicine Academic League. I believe that talking about this theme is really important for all people, which can help stoping this fires. Hope that I can make difference with this article.



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