Amazonia

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From the ground to the sky , the Amazon offers a stunning sensory effect.  Within the 6.9 million square kilometers spreading over nine South American countries (Brazil, Bolivia, Peru, Colombia, Ecuador, Venezuela, Guyana, Suriname and French Guiana) there lies an unparalleled biodiversity that includes thousands of plants and animals, millions of insects, which represents almost half of all species on Earth!

Brazil covers about 60% of the Amazon basin, the biome covers close to 4.2 million square kilometers (49% of the country) and is distributed into nine states (Amazonas, Pará, Mato Grosso, Acre, Rondônia, Roraima, Amapá, Tocantins and part of Maranhão). It is often confused with the so-called Legal Amazon – an administrative area of 5.2 million square kilometers set by law in  1953 and 1966.  This includes savannas and the Pantanal. (Map: biome, Amazon and limit Panamazônia)

Under the dark and muddy surfaces of the Amazonian rivers, 3,000 species of fish glide through the 25,000 km of water: it is the largest river basin in the world. With about one-fifth of the total fresh water volume on the planet, its banks are home to more than 24 million people.  Among those, you can find more than 180 different ethnic groups that is comprised of over 342,000 indigenous people.

In addition to ensuring the survival of these people by providing food, shelter and medicines, The Amazon has a purpose beyond its borders. It is essential in balancing global climate and directly influences the rainfall in Latin America. Its abundant vegetation holds between 80 and 120 billion tons of carbon. With every falling tree , a piece of the Amazon goes to the heavens.

Font: Greenpeace

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