Environment

How tech can curb deforestation in Brazil’s Cerrado

The Cerrado tropical savanna has been decimated by deforestation, now being home to much of Brazil's grain farming. Researchers want to show farmers that their crops rely on the Cerrado's preservation

cerrado grains savanna
The Cerrado savanna has become Brazil’s soy country. Photo: Rafael Goes/Shutterstock

While forest destruction in the Brazilian Amazon makes headlines worldwide, the country’s lesser known Cerrado region is the biome which actually suffers the most from deforestation. Encompassing what is now Brazil’s soy belt, the Cerrado tropical savanna continues to see its trees cut down to make way for grain plantations. And this agriculture and disorderly urban occupation provokes its own environmental damage, threatening endemic Brazilian animal species and putting major water sources at risk.

The Cerrado irrigates some 40 percent of Brazil and feeds eight out of the country’s 12 main water basins. It makes up over...

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