• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Describe how a global vegetation system you have studied has been modified by human activity

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Describe how a global vegetation system you have studied has been modified by human activity Human activity affects rainforest ecosystems in many ways, some of which are negative and some of which are positive. One impact of human activity is the loss of nutrients from the soils of the rainforest. This occurs as tropical vegetation is interfered with or removed by deforestation, this leads to changes in nutrient availability and transfers. In the rainforest most of the nutrients are stored within the biomass and the ground litter reservoirs, the main transfers are between these two reservoirs. Dead and decaying matter decomposes rapidly and plant roots then take up nutrients. Under human influence of for example a 'slash and burn' regime with a three year cropping limit and a long fallow period in between the nutrient levels in the litter and the biomass decrease and the nutrients in the soil increase. This is however counteracted by heavy rain which causes loss of nutrients through leaching, soil erosion and to the atmosphere. Soil fertility increases during periods of fallow should sufficient time be allowed. ...read more.

Middle

It is estimated that there were more than five million Indians living in the Amazon rainforest in 1500. By 1900 this had fallen to about one million and recent estimates suggest that there are currently fewer than 200,000 left. The population of the Waimiri-Atroan Indians tribe was 6000 in 1903; by 1973 this had fallen to 3500 and by 1986 there were only 374 people left. Most died from measles epidemics whilst others were hunted down and shot by gunmen hired by local landowners. Rainforest people are also threatened by dam construction and logging as tribes can be displaced. Commercial logging in Sarawak results in the loss of 2000 km2 of rainforest every year, however Malaysian government puts the needs of the logging companies before those of the tribe who face imprisonment if they interfere with logging activities. Deforestation in the rainforest is a major cause of these problems as during the nineteenth century, exploitation of the Amazon was confined to rubber tapping; this peaked at the turn of the century. Agriculture began in the late nineteenth century and was based upon the native system of slash and burn. ...read more.

Conclusion

The Tambopata Candama Reserved Zone is a nature reserve in the Amazonian forests of Peru. In terms of biodiversity these are the richest forests in the world. In one small part of the TCRZ there are 587 species of bird, 1230 of butterfly and 150 different types of tree. The TCRZ was created in 1990 by ministerial decree. It included 1.479 million hectares and contains a mixture of sub-tropical forest, cloud forest and tropical savannah. In the reserved zone, forest conservation is encouraged and local traditional lifestyles supported. Various health initiatives are working to enhance community life by supporting sustainable projects. There are two health centres involved in the training and support. Groups also carry out scientific research in the reserve supported by TreeS, the international voluntary organisation of the Tambopata Reserve Society. The area is however under threat from oil and gad exploration, jungle lodges, construction of highways and cattle ranching. The Amazon rainforest is therefore impacted by human activity in both negative and positive ways in some cases for economic gain and in other cases for the protection and enhancement of the landscape for future generations to come. Problems arise when these views over a specific area are conflicting and it must be decided which is more worthy. L.Tollman ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Physical Geography section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Physical Geography essays

  1. Should people be allowed to destroy the Amazon Rainforest?

    The higher the concentrations of these gases in the atmosphere the warmer the earth's climate will become. The rainforests are great stores of carbon. Plants take in carbon dioxide and use it to make food and substances such as wood.

  2. Epping Forest

    Our instructors helped us. 17 Hypothesis 3- there will be more fine grass in pillow mounds Questions Data required Experiment used Equipment used Problems Solutions There will be more fine grass in pillow mounds Look at a particular piece of ground and see of there is normal grass.

  1. The Direct Environmental Causes and Effects of Deforestation When one hears the word 'deforestation' ...

    the carbon that was stored in the tree trunks (wood is about 50% carbon) joins with oxygen and is released into the atmosphere as CO2. The loss of forests has a great effect on the global carbon cycle. From 1850 to 1990, deforestation world-wide (including that in the United States)

  2. An Investigation Into Kingston Area Shopping Centres and Their Patterns of Use

    If the camera stopped operating due to a dead battery, then photographs could not be taken. Raw Data: DATA PRESENTATION- SECTION 3 Before I begin to use various graphical techniques to determine whether my hypotheses are proved or disproved, I decided to rank the 9 different shopping centres according to

  1. Letter to the brazilian government regarding the amazonian rainforest

    Mining companies could be restrained into only being able to mine only certain amounts/types of the minerals underneath the rainforest flooring, at different intervals during a year/month. Taxes can be installed on each ore the foreign companies extract, so the country itself would receive extra amounts of money from work

  2. Analyse the role of human activity in plant succession.

    The short-term gain of deforestation, i.e. the profit to be made, is all well and good but there have been a large number of adverse effects brought about by the removal of large areas of forest.

  1. Should the coast between Overstrand and Sheringham be protected at any cost, or should ...

    Six categories were used and each site was given a score out of 10 (0 for negative and 10 for positive, or 0 for very little and 10 for A Lot) The six categories are: Human Intervention Effect of Management on Coastal properties & infrastructure Effect of management on primary

  2. How The Management Of The Amazon Rainforest Is Being Affected

    Unsealed roads become muddy when it rains, and dusty when it's hot. HEP. They see the forest as important to them as the trees cause more rainfall. This rain falls into rivers where it is used to turn the turbines In the power stations.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work