Author: Maya Welch
Caption: The idea of creating a postcard was inspired by The Washington Post’s article “Postcards from Earth’s climate futures” and an in-class activity in Representing Extinction. I chose the Amazon rainforest because I remember reading Wilson’s “Why Extinction is Accelerating” from Half-Earth which stated that there is a greater richness in vulnerability and number of species in tropical environments compared to temperate ones. This means that any land harmed or destroyed in tropical regions would lead to greater biodiversity loss than if the same amount of land were harmed in a temperate region, making tropical areas more irreplaceable.
Coming from Los Angeles, I have always been acutely aware of forest fires. Half of the year, the local news is flooded with stories of fires wreaking havoc in areas just a few dozen miles north of me. A few years ago, I was devastated when I heard about how Australia was plagued by fires that lasted for months and led to the death of millions of animals, but I was more saddened by the fact that the Amazon rainforest was experiencing a similar thing with a lot less news coverage. The Amazon rainforest is one of the most biodiverse and beautiful places on earth, yet it was not receiving the attention it deserved. I wondered if this was because the Amazon rainforest is located in developing countries where the people do not have the same privileges that Australians do. They cannot advocate for themselves the same way that Australians can and they are exploited by corporations using them and their land for timber, mines, cheap labor, natural resources, and other commodities. All of these things made me think that a postcard of the Amazon could convey several important issues society is currently facing and support a place that Western media usually does not focus on.
Tags: Extreme Weather Events