The spatial extent of change in tropical forest ecosystem services in the Amazon delta

Tuesday, 16 December 2014: 9:40 AM
Caio Cesar de Araujo Barbosa1, Peter Atkinson2 and John Dearing2, (1)University of Southampton, Southampton, United Kingdom, (2)University of Southampton, Geography and Environment, Southampton, United Kingdom
Deltas hold major economic potential due their strategic location, close to seas and inland waterways, thereby supporting intense economic activity. The increasing pace of human development activities in coastal deltas over the past five decades has also strained environmental resources and produced extensive economic and sociocultural impacts. The Amazon delta is located in the Amazon Basin, North Brazil, the largest river basin on Earth and also one of the least understood. A considerable segment of the population living in the Amazon delta is directly dependent on the local extraction of natural resources for their livelihood. Areas sparsely inhabited may be exploited with few negative consequences for the environment. However, increasing pressure on ecosystem services is amplified by large fluxes of immigrants from other parts of the country, especially from the semi-arid zone in Northeast Brazil to the lowland forests of the Amazon delta. Here we present partial results from a bigger research project. Therefore, the focus will be on presenting an overview of the current state, and the extent of changes on forest related ecosystem services in the Amazon delta over the last three decades. We aggregated a multitude of datasets, from a variety of sources, for example, from satellite imagery such as the Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR), the Global Inventory Modelling and Mapping Studies (GIMMS), the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS), and climate datasets at meteorological station level from the Brazilian National Institute of Meteorology (INMET) and social and economic statistics data from the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE) and from the Brazilian Institute of Applied Economic Research (IPEA). Through analysis of socioeconomic and satellite earth observation data we were able to produce and present spatially-explicit information with the current state and transition in forest cover and its impacts to forest ecosystem services providing units in the Amazon delta.