Here’s What’s Destroying the Rain Forest and What YOU Can Do About It

Written by on May 17, 2016 in Environment with 14 Comments

Amazon being destroyed-compressed

By Christina Sarich | We Are Anonymous

Amazon Rain Forest — One glance at the following pictures of the Amazon — devastated by a single industry — should have us rethinking our fix for burgers and fries.

When one considers that the rare rain forests of the Amazon account for more than 7,000 medical compounds, leaving thousands more uncategorized or even named, it will literally make us sick to keep clear-cutting the Amazon for cattle ranching and pig farming. Yet that’s exactly why this precious land is being destroyed.


The Amazonian rain forest is being bulldozed primarily for agricultural purposes, but specifically, in the Brazilian region, approximately 80 percent of the deforestation is caused by cattle ranching — increasing at an unprecedented rate every year.


For some this is hard to imagine — an area as big as Washington being completely wiped out — but we don’t have to. There are startling pictures which make the fallout from meat consumption a stark reality.

The demand for beef grows every year and the U.S., Europe, Russia, and China are largely to blame for Brazil’s healthy export business, as the country is the world’s largest exporter of beef.

In recent years, the total export value of beef increased dramatically, from $1.9 million to $1.9 billion. It has the largest commercial cattle herd of approximately 180 – 190 million head. The government of Brazil offers loans of billions of dollars to support the expansion of its beef industry, and the U.S., alone, consumes more than 200 million pounds of beef every year. In fact, according to U.S. Dept. of Agriculture consumption data, it’s the number one protein source in America, with average consumption of 67 pounds per person per year.

We really have to ask ourselves, is a summer beef Bar-B-Que, a trip to McDonald’s, or Kobe Steak House really worth this shocking devastation to one of the world’s most precious resources?

Brazil’s rain forest isn’t the only area that is at stake. Numerous countries’ ecologies are being utterly shattered. University of Cambridge research estimates that as the rainforests are being demolished, one or two major species groups is also being wiped out.

While people suffer from water and food shortages, the agricultural industry occupies over half of the world’s arable land resources, uses the majority of our freshwater stores, and causes rampant air and water pollution and land degradation — all while deforestation is pushing countless species to the brink of extinction.

This mindless practice also displaces indigenous peoples who have eons-old traditions for stewarding the land. As Susan E. Place writes in Tropical Rainforests: Latin American Nature and Society in Transition:

“Ecological adaptations and agricultural methods offer new resources for resource management of the Amazon without incurring the wholesale destruction which characterizes present developmental policies. If indigenous experience were taken seriously and incorporated into research and development programs, then the Indians would be recognized for what they truly are: a diligent, intelligent, and practical people who have adapted successfully to their Amazon environment over thousands of years.”

And yet, one in ten Americans will take a bite out of a burger today.

This article (Here’s What’s Destroying the Rain Forest and What YOU Can Do About It) is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Christina Sarich and If you spot a typo, please email the error and the name of the article to Image credit: Wikimedia Commons/Julian Herzog

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  1.' Melvin G. Brewster says:


  2.' Sheya Atherton says:

    Americans tend to consume many more resources of the world compared to the developing and the developed nations!

  3.' Amanda Escalante says:

    I purchase my beef, from a local, organic farm. The beef is pasture raised, given zero antibiotics or hormones, and supports sustainable, low impact farming. It limits my consumption of beef, and helps support people who grow healthy vegetables, fruits, and cage free-free range eggs and chicken. I also grow my own fruits and veggies. Now if people started to do that, and became a bit more conscious about what their cheap beef really costs, we might see an improvement in a decade or so. You can enjoy beef, and can have your summer beef bbq, without supporting such an environmentally destructive business model. You just have to be willing to make the effort.

  4.' Daniel Denton says:

    The greedy people will not be satisfied until they have destroyed the layer off earth we live on . & once we have peeled her thick layer back and drilled her insides out . There is only one thing in the core it’s called fire … We will all burn for this and Mother Nature will win and destroy all in her path… then she will start all over again …

  5.' Abbigail Corcoran says:

    I want to give up meat all together but I live in ireland and all beef here is locally sourced just like the rest of the meats x

  6.' Adrians Van says:

    Haven’t eaten meat since early 90s, in fact, hardly eat any food at all these days, just a snack every few days.

  7.' Michael Dobbs says:

    I eat fish

  8.' Steven Lewanski says:

    Isnt it obvious by now, the only logical step forward is to be vegan. Please, we have absolutely no need to end someone’s life for a meal.

  9.' Amy Solley says:

    I don’t eat beef. *shrug* I don’t miss it either.

  10.' Bob Savittieri says:

    Eat America’s Native “Beef” BUFFALO, they serve it exclusively at the Huntsman Cancer Institute. It’s better for you and actually lowers cholesterol by eating it. #GYSOT ?

  11.' Mohammad Bakhtiar says:

    I don’t eat meat and have started motivation others in my joint family system to decrease meat consumption to a significant level. It has started working out but naturally will take some time. I belong to Pukhtun ethnic group and eating meat has been become part of my culture.

  12.' Edwin Deboer says:


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