Bo Derek: Save the Yasuni rainforest – Ecuador must not drill for oil in this natural wonderland

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bo Derek & Vice President Moreno working to save Yasuní. 

 

Deep in the Ecuadorian Amazon, one of the planet’s last unspoiled ecological treasures is on the verge of destruction.

For decades, scientists have flocked to Yasuni National Park,an unspoiled laboratory for evolution and scientific discovery. Itwas one of the few places in the world that did not freeze during the last ice-age, becoming a refuge for thousands of species of amphibians, birds, mammals and plants that would eventually repopulate the Amazon. Yasuni remains arguably the most biodiverse spot in the world today.

But this pristine sanctuary has now been deemed disposable. Driven by the recent discovery of nearly 1 billion barrels of crude oil in its Ishpingo Tambococha Tiputini (ITT) oil fields, there is intense pressure on Ecuador to drill. Without urgent action from the international community, Yasun will succumb to the same forces that have ravaged rainforests from Brazil to Indonesia.

Ecuador is famous for its awe-inspiring natural riches – it was the Gal pagos Islands, after all, that inspired Charles Darwin. But Yasuni is more than just surface beauty. One hectare contains more species of trees than are found in all of Canada and the U.S. There are likely thousands of undiscovered species in Yasuni and scientists believe that the vast array of organic life forms in Yasuni may hold important medicinal secrets, including potential cancer cures. It is also home to the Tagaeri and Taromenane tribes, which live in voluntary isolation.

We’ve only discovered about a quarter of the estimated 8.7 million species of life on Earth, according to a study published by the Public Library of Science. As famed Harvard biologist E. O. Wilson has said, losing these species means that “we won’t know the benefits to humanity, which are potentially enormous. If we’re going to advance medical science, we need to know what’s in the environment.”

Yet Ecuador is on the verge of losing Yasuni. A developing nation of 15 million, Ecuador earns more than half of its export revenue from oil, making it the country’s primary source of income. The tradeoff is that much beautiful land has been destroyed.

 

Source: NYDailyNews.com

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~ by FSVSF Admin on 20 October, 2011.

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