*Latin America spans 7,000 miles, from Mexico to Tierra Del Fuego. *3 Regions: Central America, South America, and the Caribbean.

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1 Physical Geography

2 Latin America spans 7,000 miles, from Mexico to Tierra Del Fuego *3 Regions: Central America, South America, and the Caribbean. *Intro clip: C0 *Thoughts? Observations?

3 Sierra Madres Mts. Guiana Highlands Andes Mts. Brazilian Highlands Patagonian Plateau

4 *Longest mountain range in the world (5,000 mi.) *The world s 2 nd Highest mountain range *Home of the Inca, one of the most important civilizations in Latin American history. *Source of the Amazon River

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7 * Chief Mountain system in Mexico * Runs from NW to SE through Mexico * Steep sided mountains * Terrain ranges from permanently snow covered, to tropical valleys

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10 *plateau and low-mountain region of South America located north of the Amazon and south of the Orinoco River

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13 *Llanos- Located in Colombia and Venezuela. Grassy area for livestock, grazing and farming (similar to Great Plains) *Pampas- Located in Argentina and Uruguay. Great place to raise cattle and wheat. *Also home of the Gauchos *Cerrado- Located in Brazil, large savannah with flat terrain and moderate rainfall. Great conditions for farming.

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15 Orinoco R. Amazon R Parana R

16 *Orinoco- Mainly located in northern Venezuela, it runs 1,500 miles separating Colombia and Venezuela. *Parana- runs 3,000 mi. in the highlands of Brazil. It runs south and west, then turns back east

17 *Flows 4,000 mi., west to east, starting in the Andes. Making it the 2 nd longest in the world. *Carries more water than any river in the world (20% of world s fresh water), more than the next 7 rivers combined. *Fed by 1,000 tributaries *Provides transportation and fisheries for locals. *Lifeblood of indigenous populations for thousands of years

18 *Largest drainage basin in the world covering 1.2 billion acres (2.7 million sq. mi.). *1/5 th of the world s total river flow *Covering 40% of the continent, it is mostly located in Brazil, but it is found in 7 other countries (Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, Guiana, French Guiana, and Suriname) *Home of the largest rainforest on earth, about the size of the continental United States.

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21 65VNOO-T-gE *

22 *Diverse climate: from tropical rainforests to the driest desert on earth.

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25 *Largest tropical rainforest on earth *Hot and rainy: rains 200 days (100 in.) per year *Biodiversity: Over 500 mammals, 175 lizards and over 300 other reptiles species, and one third of the world's birds live in Amazonia. It is estimated that about 30 million insect types can be found here. *vegetation continuously recycles carbon dioxide into oxygen, it has been described as the "Lungs of our Planet". About 20% of earth's oxygen is produced by the Amazon rainforest.

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27 * Native peoples of the Amazon rainforest have used different plants for centuries as cures and potions for their health and survival. * 25% of Western pharmaceuticals come from rainforests: muscle relaxant,birth control pills, hormones, steroids, asthma and arthritis treatment, Quinine (malaria and pneumonia treatment),sedatives, tranquilizer, heart disease treatment. * Scientists are now discovering that many of the plants are sources for new drugs for AIDS, cancer, diabetes, arthritis, and Alzheimer's

28 *The rainforest supports millions of plant, animal, and insect species *Today, more than 20% of the Amazon rainforest has been destroyed and is gone forever. The land is being cleared for cattle ranches, mining operations, logging, and subsistence agriculture. Some forests are being burned to make charcoal to power industrial plants. *It is estimated that we are losing 137 plant, animal, and insect species every single day due to rainforest deforestation. That equates to 50,000 species a year. As the rainforest species disappear, so do many possible cures for life-threatening diseases. *At the current rate of destruction, it is estimated that the last remaining rainforests could be destroyed in less than 40 years.

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37 *High level of geological activity= availability of mineral resources. *Minerals: gold, silver, iron, copper, tin, lead, titanium, and nickel. *Region is among world leaders in the mining of raw materials, mostly exported for industrial production. *Energy: oil (Mexico, Venezuela, and Brazil), hydroelectric (Brazil), natural gas (Trinidad, Brazil), coal, and uranium. *Latin America s resources were the foundations of early colonial economies, and facilitated the rise of the capitalist economy

38 *The availability of abundant resources serve as both an opportunity, and an obstacle to the regions sustainability. *The extraction of resources creates jobs and generates wealth, but also poses an environmental threat to ecosystems, wetlands, and the ozone layer.

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41 * Population is rapidly shifting from rural areas to urban areas (85% in Argentina, Chile). * Mexico and Brazil= ½ of the Latin American population * Mega cities: Sao Paulo, Rio, Bogota, and Mexico City * Social impact: slums and other poorly built homes threatened by environment. In the slums there are high unemployment rates, and increasing crime rates * Environmental: air pollution, polluted water supplies, inadequate infrastructure (sewer, transportation, housing, electricity).

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