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Development 1

GDP per capita is the GDP (total income) of a country, divided by its population. It shows how much money people earn on average. So basically GDP is the dollar value of all goods and services produced within a country’s borders in a given year, then divided by the population in a given year.

The connection between a country having more money and people living longer is shown by the following: 

Richer countries have more buildings, which mean more jobs.

More jobs means more money.

More money means more food.

Environment is better.

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Development 2

The two most important ways of measuring development are economic development and human development. Economic Development is a measure of a country's wealth and how it is generated (for example agriculture is considered less economically advanced then banking). Human development measures the access the population has to wealth, jobs, education, nutrition, health, leisure and safety - as well as political and cultural freedom.

Sustainable development is a way for people to use resources without the resources running out.

NGOs can help strengthen communities and can set them up for future success, but this requires working with multiple individuals and organizations to ensure sustainability and stability. It’s probably useful to first start off by asking flood victims what they need. How have their livelihoods been affected by the floods? What would help alleviate the situation so that they can continue to provide for their families and how can NGOs help facilitate this?

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Arctic 1

Release of stored carbon into the atmosphere as a result of current fossil fuel use is thought by most of the climate scientists to be causing global warming, which threatens to destroy the climatic conditions necessary for the current Arctic climate. 

Implications:

Starvation (animals rapidly going extinct)

Freezing (cold conditions)

Impacts on Locals:

Cold winters

No animals left to hunt

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Arctic 2

Effect on polar bears. Polar bears rely on the sea ice to hunt, breed, and, in some cases, den. Changes in their distribution or numbers affect the entire arctic ecosystem.

Scientists emphasize that we still have time to save polar bears if we significantly reduce greenhouse emissions within the next few years. Yet it will take 30 to 40 years for changes reversing the warming trend to show.

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Amazonia 1

Layers of a rainforest:

FOREST FLOOR

It's very dark down here.  Almost no plants grow in this area, as a result.  Since hardly any sun reaches the forest floor things begin to decay quickly.  A leaf that might take one year to decompose in a regular climate will disappear in  6 weeks.  Giant anteaters live in this layer.

UNDERSTORY LAYER

Little sunshine reaches this area so the plants have to grow larger leaves to reach the sunlight.   The plants in this area seldom grow to 12 feet.  Many animals live here including jaguars, red-eyed tree frogs and leopards.  There is a large concentration of insects here.

CANOPY LAYER

This is the primary layer of the forest and forms a roof over the two remaining layers.   Most canopy trees have smooth, oval leaves that come to a point. It's a maze of leaves and branches.  Many animals live in this area since food is abundant.   Those animals include: snakes, toucans and treefrogs.

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Amazonia 2

EMERGENT LAYER

The tallest trees are the emergents, towering as much as 200 feet above the forest floor with trunks that measure up to 16 feet around.   Most of these trees are broad-leaved, hardwood evergreens. Sunlight is plentiful up here.  Animals found are eagles, monkeys, bats and butterflies.

Why is the amazon imprtant? Carbon dioxide in, oxygen out!
Under natural conditions, plants remove CO2 from the atmosphere and absorb it for photosynthesis, an energy-creating process that yields:

  • Oxygen, which is released back into the air and…
  • … Carbon, which allows the plant to grow.


So, without tropical rainforests the greenhouse effect would likely be even more pronounced, and climate change may possibly get even worse in the future.

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Amazonia 3

Why is the forest so important to indigenous people? Indigenous people revere the forest that, until the present, has protected them from outsiders and given them everything they need. They live what is called a sustainable existence, meaning they use the land without doing harm to the plants and animals that also call the rainforest their home.

They are completely dependent on them. 

Food- from trees and the animals that live there. Health- most western medicines use ingredients from the plants that live in the rain forests, so clearly the natives do too.

Buildings- all their houses and structures are built from the wood in the forest and they make sure they harvest it in a sustainable way.

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Amazonia 4

Consequences of cutting down trees?

Trees absorb CO2 so there will be more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere which will contribute to global warming. It will also kill animals as trees are a natural habitat for many animals.

If you cut down trees then you have less oxygen producers.

How we can use the rainforest sustainably in the future? 

(next card)

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Amazonia 5

  • Agro-forestry - growing trees and crops at the same time. This lets farmers take advantage of shelter from the canopy of trees. It prevents soil erosion and the crops benefit from the nutrients from the dead organic matter.
  • Selective logging - trees are only felled when they reach a particular height. This allows young trees a guaranteed life span and the forest will regain full maturity after around 30-50 years.
  • Education - ensuring those involved in exploitation and management of the forest understand the consequences behind their actions.
  • Afforestation - the opposite of deforestation. If trees are cut down, they are replaced to maintain the canopy.
  • Forest reserves - areas protected from exploitation.
  • Monitoring - use of satellite technology and photography to check that any activities taking place are legal and follow guidelines for sustainability.
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