The Amazon is worth $8.2 billion a year if it’s left standing, finds a new study in Nature. In many parts of the rainforest, that economic benefit far outweighs the short-term gain of tearing it down. “The forest should unambiguously be saved when measured in a purely economic sense”

The Amazon is worth $8.2 billion a year if it’s left standing, finds a new study in Nature. In many parts of the rainforest, that economic benefit far outweighs the short-term gain of tearing it down. “The forest should unambiguously be saved when measured in a purely economic sense”

  • A study from economists and agricultural engineers published recently shows that the economic benefit of the rainforest if it’s conserved is $8.2 billion a year.
  • The $8.2 billion includes the economic benefit of sustainable industries that currently function in the rainforest, such as Brazil nut farming and rubber tree timber.
  • These numbers don’t come from some back-of-a-napkin calculation, but are the result of a rigorous economical study where the researchers analyzed dozens of contributing, and contradicting, factors to create a spatial map of the economic value throughout the Amazon.
  • Even still, the researchers noted that these numbers only capture a fraction of “The immeasurable overall value of the Amazon forest.”
  • The findings are particularly timely because Brazil, where 60 percent of the Amazon is found, recently elected a new president, Jair Bolsonaro.
  • Bolsonaro is Brazil’s answer to US President Donald Trump; he’s an anti-globalist, right-wing climate change denier who suggested Brazil withdraw from the Paris Climate Agreement, and has pledged to start tearing down the Amazon to open it up for mining, farming, and building dams.
  • Even a climate-change denier can’t argue with cold, hard cash, and this study clearly shows that the economic benefit of most of the Amazon is higher when it’s left standing.