The women sustainably harvest items from the forest, and how produce essential oils, lotions, and soaps from the ingredients they harvest. Because they only harvest ingredients instead of using the entire plant, the forest lives on, while they still are earning an income from the sales of their products.
Many experts have ideas about how to improve on sustainable development in the region. Another expert says, “For instance, improving the monitoring of species loss reduces ignorance about the ecological system and may lead to patents for medicinal plants. The latter enables synergies that integrate indigenous knowledge into management/conservation” (Reyer). Convincing companies to invest in these types of development have often fallen on deaf ears because of costs. Many very large global corporations have large operations in the rainforest, such as Mitsubishi and Georgia Pacific, and because the government essentially gives them free reign with little regulation, they exploit the rainforest by harvest in the cheapest, rather than most efficient way. The government needs to set tougher regulations for the rainforest and its use, but they have been largely unwilling to do so as of yet.
Many Brazilian natives depend on the rainforest for their livelihoods and their very survival. They have been living sustainably for centuries, and now their world is disappearing. Many are displaced when the large corporations come in and buy up millions of acres for their operations, and as the rainforest changes, the natives lose their way of life and the foundations of their culture, as well. The women who formed the sustainable association did so because the lake near their home had been over fished and no longer provided their village food. An association formed to take care of the lake and reintroduce fish, and it worked so well, the women formed their own to further aid their community. These sustainable corporations can work, they just need to be shown to the people and monitored by the people who have an interest in the results.
Other experts believe that it is necessary to blend conservation techniques with exploitive techniques to build a balance that will appeal to everyone and still save the forest.
Author Butler continues, “Hence, conservation of forest ecosystems in the Amazon should incorporate more exploitive/management elements and forest exploitation in the Amazon should strive to include more conservation aspects” (Reyer). Clearly, sustainability needs to begin as soon as possible. While some companies are beginning to realize this already, many are simply exploiting the resources while they can, and the Brazilian government does little to stop it. The companies bring money into the regions, but they could be doing more to help the environment as they do business. The government clearly has to take a more productive role in the rainforests future, and they need to educate the Brazilian people to its importance, so they will begin more sustainable programs on their own. In conclusion, the fate of the Brazilian rainforest is in the governments hands, but the entire world has an obligation to the rainforest, as well. We rely on the forest for so many products that enhance and improve our lives, and it provides oxygen, materials, and organisms that benefit the entire planet. That is why it is important for developed nations to step in and offer assistance to Brazil in an attempt to save the rainforest. Sustainable techniques are available and can be used with good results; Brazil just needs help in implementing them. References Butler, Rhett a. “Deforestation in the Amazon.” Mongabay.com. 2009. 19 March 2010.