The changing Amazon

Earth's largest rainforest will be in the news more than ever this year. In June, the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, will discuss how to protect the Amazon, and a proposed change to Brazil's forest code could speed the destruction of this biodiversity hot spot. Already the forest is becoming a net carbon source rather than a sink, as a review in Nature shows. Read more about the science and the controversies in Nature's News stories, Comment articles and research papers.

Image credit: John Warburton-Lee Photography / Alamy



  • Atmospheric science: A towering experiment

    An ambitious project to track greenhouse gases from a perch high above the Amazon forest will provide crucial data - but only if scientists can get it built.

    Nature )

  • Climate: Counting carbon in the Amazon

    If the next climate treaty tackles deforestation, tropical nations will need to monitor the biomass of their forests. One ecologist has worked out a way to do that from the sky, finds Jeff Tollefson.

    Nature )


  • Defend the Amazon

    Brazilian lawmakers should not weaken their stance on deforestation to appease landowners.

    Nature 480, 413-414 ( )

  • Desertification: The next dust bowl

    Drought is the most pressing problem caused by climate change. It receives too little attention, says Joseph Romm.

    Nature 478, 450-451 ( )