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Brazil, U.S. renew Amazon research agreements

Brazil, U.S. renew Amazon research agreements

Brazil, U.S. renew Amazon research agreements
July 22, 2006

Thursday Brazil and the U.S. renewed two Amazon forest research agreements.

Brazilian Deputy Minister of Science and Technology Dr. Luis Manuel Rebelo Fernandes signed two continuation agreements for research on the Amazon: the Large-Scale Biosphere – Atmosphere Experiment in Amazonia (LBA) and Biological Determinants of Forest Fragments Program (BDFFP). Implementation of the programs will be lead by Brazil’s INPA, or the Brazilian Institute for Research in the Amazon.

The LBA was established in 1993 by the Brazilian science community and an international team of scientists to “study how Amazonia currently functions as a regional entity within the larger Earth system, and how changes in land use and climate will affect the biological, physical, and chemical functioning of the region’s ecosystem.” Recent research within LBA has found that tropical forests, unlike temperate forests, store more carbon in the dry season than in the rainy season.

Amazon rainforest canopy in Peru.

BDFFP research revealed that “forest fragments of less than 400 hectares are too small to sustain the microclimate and adequate biodiversity to maintain their Amazonian character. Therefore, conservation of larger forests is essential to protecting plants and animals,” according to a release from the U.S. State Department.

The State Department notes that “Both projects have produced numerous research publications and trained hundreds of students from the undergraduate through the doctoral level.”

It adds, “the continuation of this important scientific collaboration will strengthen our mutual understanding of the Amazonian region and foster further training of scientists on both sides.”

This article used quotes and information from a State Department news release.

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