Paulo's Forest

Paulo lives in Brazil. His father is a farmer. In Brazil, farming is not the same as in the United States. In the U.S., we think of using a piece of land for crops over and over again. Paulo and his family cannot do that. Paulo's father is farming in the rainforest. They are very poor. They do not have a lot of money. They need food. They need to farm to live.

Paulo's friends and family travel together. They move a lot. They look for places to live. They need to remove the trees in the rainforest to farm. They use slash and burn to farm. They slash the trees. Then they burn them. This gets rid of trees. It also gets rid of bugs. The ash is used to fertilize. Then they can farm. This doesn't work for very long. Then Paulo's family and friends must move again. They go to another place and slash and burn there. To them this is a way to stay live.

The forest near Paulo is disappearing. Every minute a part of a forest that is about the size of 20 football fields is gone. Poor farmers are one reason, but there are other reasons, too. Land is being used for cattle grazing. Trees are used for wood, firewood, and lumber to build buildings for the rest of the world, too.

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