As Amazon forest-to-savanna tipping point looms, solutions remain elusive

When a swarm of bees attacked Acrísio dos Reis, something within him shifted. “Nature was lashing back at me,” he remembered, as he spoke by phone with Mongabay from his small rural farmstead in the Brazilian Amazon. The bee assault befell dos Reis as he drove a heavy-duty tractor through the rainforest, knocking down many dozens of trees — a field clearing process he’d carried out for 25 years. But that particular morning marked a sea change: the first time he realized the true harm of deforestation. Today, having given up bulldozing trees, dos Reis runs a sustainable family agroforestry busi…

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