18th March 2010
Source: Cool Earth
A new report looking at how times of drought impact the Amazon rainforest suggests that the tropical forest may be more resilient than scientists previously thought.
Research backed by NASA and published in Geophysical Research Letters said that there were "no big differences" in the levels of green in the Amazon rainforest in times of drought and no drought.
This claim is totally opposite to others put forward by different researchers, including one that said the rainforest is almost at the "tipping point" between changing from tropical forest to savannah, which can be caused by reductions in rainfall levels.
For the new research, scientists looked at the conditions in the rainforest during the 2005 drought. Droughts hit the Amazon every century or so. The scientists concluded that while the condition of the rainforest was not better during drought, it was not much worse either - suggesting that times of dry weather do not impact the Amazon at all.
Many global warming and climate change claims have come under scrutiny recently, with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change criticsied for making inaccurate predictions over the melting of Himalayan glaciers.