A Ray of Hope for the Rainforest
By Jennifer Hart Photos by Troy Casey



The Rainforest is one of our most precious resources. It is an ecological community with the largest concentration of plants, animals and insects on earth. It holds natural medicines, herbs, fruits, nuts, chocolate and the sacred knowledge of the tribespeople who inhabit it.

Producing 40% of the earth's oxygen, the rainforest has been called the "Lungs of the Planet." Brimming with life-force energy, lush foliage and giant emergent trees estimated at 200-800 years old, one quarter of the entire planet's species call the rainforest home. We have only just begun to uncover the millions of plant species that dwell within the rainforest - only 1% has been studied. Of the 3000 plants that were discovered active against cancer, 70% are found in the rainforest.

In the last 30 years a large percentage of the rainforest has been destroyed by logging, agriculture and deforestation. We are losing this vital ecosystem by 1.5 acres every second (that is bigger than a football field!). Scientists have determined that, at this rate, the rainforests will become extinct in 40 years. 137 plant, animal and insect species die every day to deforestation.

In addition, carbon dioxide is dumped into the atmosphere with the stripping of the rainforest, contributing to global warming and the greenhouse effect. Brazil has the unfortunate title of world's fourth largest CO2 emitter because of these greenhouse gas emissions.

Obviously, the rainforest can do more for us alive than dead. We have reached a critical point in time where sharing knowledge and initiating positive action can save the rainforest from further destruction.

One man has made it his mission to provide a ray of hope for the Amazon rainforest by creating eco-commerce and supporting programs that protect the Amazon and its inhabitants. His name is John Easterling and he owns an empowering and inspiring organization, Amazon Herb Co.

For over 30 years John has been traveling to the rainforest and developing relationships with the indigenous people of the Amazon rainforest. He has helped to protect their sacred knowledge and share the healing plants globally to create new models of prosperity and conservation.

Jean-Michel Cousteau (son of Jacques Cousteau) recently traveled with his Ocean Adventures team to meet John in the Peruvian rainforest for the making of his 2008 documentary, Return to the Amazon. John and Amazon Herb Company were recognized as "the strongest testament that keeping the rainforest alive and productive is more economically profitable than cutting it down".

John Easterling, (nicknamed Amazon John), began his travels importing artifacts from the Amazon rainforest. After becoming deathly ill and being given an herbal tea from the Shipibo tribe in the Peruvian rainforest that gave him back his life, John realized the real treasure of the rainforest were the healing plants. From then on, Amazon John became passionate about the preservation of the land and sustainability.

Crossing cultural boundaries, John has fostered solid relationships with many villages in the Amazon - offering organic, high-vibration herbal products to the world while giving back to the tribes.

Amazon Herb Co. has teamed with ACEER (Amazon Center for Environmental Education & Research) bringing educational programs and environmental awareness to children living along the Peruvian rainforest. To date, the program has improved the quality of education for 5,500 school children and 300 teachers, continually expanding to other regions.

The Rio Pisqui Federation, sponsored by Amazon John, represents tribal communities along the Pisqui River. It gives them a chance to create a powerful forum and empower each other to protect their land, knowledge and culture.

John also spearheaded the process for the village of Porvenir to successfully secure title to their land and protect it from loggers. These three programs were made possible from profits of Amazon Herb Co.

There is more work to be done to save our beautiful rainforests and awaken people to the urgent need to take action. John Easterling and the Amazon Herb Co. provide a progressive, sustainable and eco-friendly way to contribute to its preservation.

If you would like more information on elevating your health, contributing to rainforest preservation and supporting sacred commerce, contact Jennifer Hart, Rainforest Ambassador for Amazon Herb Co., www.herlushlife.com


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