When people think rainforest, they often think of a warm, humid area where exotic animals typically reserved for zoo cages that thrive amongst a dense population of lush, green plants and trees. What they don’t realize is that the rainforest is dwindling.

The largest rainforest in the world is located in Brazil, with the country of Africa claiming the second-largest. The people in these regions use some of the area for agriculture, but logging has taken much of the natural resources from these parts of the world.

Why the Rainforest is Essential for the Planet

Rainforests are nearly impenetrable to humans due to all the plants that grow there. Can you imagine the clean, fresh oxygen that these plants give off? Without the oxygen from the plants, which humans need to survive, the world would be a different place.

There are also a wide range of exotic animals that call the Brazilian rainforest home. As the rainforest disappears, these animals become endangered. If they are not saved in time, then their entire species is wiped off the planet to the point of total extinction.

Ways that You Can Protect the Rainforest

There are lifestyle changes you can make that will help protect the rainforests of Brazil and other areas. The best part is, you can do them from the comfort of your own home or workplace. Here are the ways my family has pledged to help protect the rainforests.

  • Shop Used Before New – When you shop thrift and second-hand stores, then you keep items from winding up in the landfill. My family purchases nearly all of its books, clothes, and household accessories from thrift stores located near our home.
  • Recycle Whenever You Can – This goes beyond throwing items into recycle bins. Use egg cartons to start seedlings. Turn empty plastic jars into storage containers in the garage. Cut old jeans into squares and sew them into a quilt. The possibilities are endless.
  • Select Renewable Resources – These types of resources are ones that naturally return to the earth after harvesting. Some examples include bamboo floor instead of hardwood. Using wind or solar power instead of electricity is another good example.
  • Support Local Business – My family shops the farmer’s market before resorting to shopping at the big box grocery store. Supporting local business means nobody has to pay the fuel and travel costs to get the items shipped to your front door.
  • Enjoy a Staycation – Instead of traveling over every holiday that creates an opportunity for a vacation, stay home and take advantage of visiting local attractions. This could be a park, a museum, a sports activity, or anything else you’ve overlooked in the past.

These habits are all ways that you can lower your carbon footprint. It is important that you start making changes as long as possible. Not only are you helping to save the Brazilian rainforest, but you are also teaching younger generations by your example.

While the habits might not seem like a lot on their own, they add up and create a ripple effect. These ripples reach out to your neighbors, other cities, and even as far as the Brazilian rainforests. This is imperative for the well-being of future generations.

Freelance writer Benjamin Baker lives in Denver, CO with his wife and their busy, growing teenagers. He especially enjoys the reserach part of his job, which leads him to sites like http://www.celebratebrazil.com/. In his spare time, Benjamin enjoys camping, fly fishing, and antiquing with his family.