AUSTIN, Texas – An Austin-based nonprofit is taking the fight against the Amazon rainforest fires to the front lines.
- Austin volunteers helping in Brazil
- Looking for financial help
- Also in need of volunteers
Rainforest Partnership has volunteers on the ground, helping those affected by the fires.
While they're providing assistance to people who live near the rainforest, volunteers are also focused on making sure people all over know that "the world's lungs" is under threat.
According to scientists, the Amazon produces six to 20 percent of the world's oxygen. Rainforest Partnership’s Niyanta Spelman said the Amazon has been able to sustain itself and its many ecosystems, but the wildfires are slowly pushing it to the tipping point.
She says that means carbon production could dramatically increase contributing to climate change.
Spelman added that while forest fires in the Amazon are nothing new to the communities they work with, this particular fire is nothing like what they've seen before.
"It is scary. Our partner communities are feeling alarmed,” Spelman said. “They're super sad. Our community leaders, indigenous leaders, are saying they're in disbelief."
If you’re interested in helping, Spelman suggested donating to efforts like theirs where they work with indigenous groups on building their communities without deforestation. She also suggests volunteering from home or on-site.
No matter how you choose to help, Spelman says it's better than doing nothing.
"I don't know how much time we have but to do nothing is no longer okay,” she said, “we have to act."
If you'd like to donate or volunteer, click here.