What if the Amazon rainforest never existed?
One of nature's most primordial insignia are rainforests. Places where trees are widespread over miles of vast territory, shaping evolution of an island, and sometimes an entire continent. One of these symbols of nature is the Amazon rainforest. It covers more land area than the Indian sub continent, it’s such a vast symbol of nature. When men first trekked down the Bering strait into the americas, the Amazon was home, and even the later euro-south americans attempted to chart and explore the domain of the rainforest. So…….what would happen if this rainforest never existed? Say the Amazon is never formed, and is replaced with a vast prairie of grassy fields?
Well let's start off with one of the biggest events if the amazon never forms. First of all the Amazon rainforest is not the only name Amazon touches. The Amazon river would be affected drastically as well. With the major amounts of trees surrounding the river, the river is restricted to the deepest of its waters, as the trees block all flood water, or rain comin to increase the rainforests size. So in this timeline the Rain Forest undisturbed by trees would look less like the modern day rainforest and more like this amazon with a 20 meter sea level rise. On here http://geology.com/sea-level-rise/. Now this would make disturbance in aquatic fauna. The fresh water in the amazon is so far out into mainland south america, that it does affect both animals…..and humans- but we'll get to that shortly.
The amazon rainforest is also crucial to the world's animals, as 1 in every 10 animals live in the amazon, so if the Rainforest never exists, these wildlife are replaced with other exotic fauna, that would be a phenomenon in primordial nature. Remember the factor of Alternate wildlife, because it will be very crucial later. However now we can get to the humans entering the isthmus of panama into South america. When humans made it to the Amazon prairie, they would find unique wildlife. When the North american megafauna 2 million years ago entered the continent, they exterminated the other wildlife, out competing them in survivability, so sabertooth cats roam the prairies, however they still die in 10,000 B.C.E in our timeline along with all the other megafauna, however humans now roam the Continent. Humans later colonize the prairies. People live out their lives in the prairies, in small tribes, however an event about to change history forever is about to happen, when people of the amazon prairie start forming a society together……...this is where it gets scary.
The ancient civilizations of Egypt was from the Nile, the Middle east had the Tigris-euphrates, and The Indians had the Indus river valley. These all had one thing in common. They have a flat plateau. The Amazon despite having a river never had an advanced civilization because rainforests cannot support an advanced river system like those in the old world. The reasoning behind this is because of how hard it would be to establish a society in such a dangerous place like the amazon, with jaguars, poisonous frogs, leeches, spiders, mosquitos malaria, and each other. Without these threats, the amazon river can be used as farmland as Brazil is using today with the cut down land. You know what that means……...there is an advanced civilization in the americas…..
This would change the history of mankind as we know it. There is now an egypt in South America. A society whatever it would be would develop. Let’s just call it Amazon for the sake of it. Amazon unlike Egypt would be even more advanced, because the farmland in the amazon is a lot easier to grow crops in, as it does not have to bare the scorched earth of the Sahara, the amazon would be a fast growing civilization. Amazon would have probably became an empire like most civilizations, with a religion, and a ruler, or emperor, there creating the Amazonian empire. What society or history this empire could form would be something of a master TV show, however we have to make assumptions, as this empire could write it’s own history. And remember the vital information about the new wildlife from a non existent Amazon rainforest? Well you may be saying for civilization to start it also needs domesticated animals, along with a pure river system. And because the Amazon is instead a vast prairie, it is guaranteed a cow like beast from the savannahs would exist, and would be domesticated, which would guarantee this civilization. however in the 1400s the Inca empire would have formed, and the Amazonian empire would have a neighbor. With new technology, and a fast growing population…..and maybe just maybe….a Chilean empire. (It’s a meme from Alternate history hub)The Amazonians and Incas I believe would be allies, as they probably wanted contact with another civilization, as the only people that came into each empire were tribal people from new territory of the empire. They would colonize the continent together, and with their trading of technology, business increases, and a larger population, larger military, and we can assume that the Inca and Amazonian empire would be the only empires due to no other empires not in the Andes in South america. There would be the Mayans, and Aztecs, that would definitely have contact with the South americans,However when the Spanish and Portuguese arrive, they will find an empire that has technology from the 1200s. They would have numbers in around 40 million, however smallpox would devastate the civilizations. However the two empires together would be able to hold out the Portuguese and Spanish well, as the Spanish did not have many soldiers, and in this timeline the Incas beat off the Spanish, however the Aztecs still fall to the Spanish in this timeline. It’s hard for them to colonize South america because of their centralized government, conquering the empire is difficult. Would the two american colonizers succeed in conquering the Incas and Amazonians? Well Smallpox would have taken out a huge amount of their population, so the Old world colonisers would have eventually taken down the civilizations.
However the Culture of the amazonians most likely does not disappear, and cultures of europeans and Amazonians mix to create a pseudo culture of euro-amazonians. Amazonian culture would also be influenced by the Incas, therefore the Incanian identity still stays prominent in latin america. However Brazil in this timeline during the Latin american struggle for independence has a HUGE economy, that makes it a world power long before BRICS. The Amazon was both a blessing and burden on Brazil's power. The amazon provided exotic lumber, giving it a lot of power to give lots of trade in oil from the primordial forest, and oceans of paper to sell. However it was a cure because all of that rich farmland was part of the rainforest, hindering agriculture. In this timeline Brazilis farming economy is immediately the largest in the world. Plantations make crops and food grown in Brazil a delicacy during the 1800s. When Brazil got independence being 1822, Slavery in Brazil was abolished in 1888, so Brazil still had 66 years of slavery, more than two decades after the U.S ended slavery. Brazil's slave labor would mass produce extremely fresh and quality food, crops, and even water from the amazon is a treasure for the old world. A new spice trade with India and Europe would occur, except this time it’s Europe, and North america wanting the spice from Brazil this time. Brazil's soil for farmland would become the best in the world. Brazil in this timeline may have stretched Slavery even longer because of this fact. Who knows a Civil war could have occurred in Brazil, (someone needs to make a TV show about this scenario) but let's just say Slavery is not abolished yet. Slavery was abolished in 1888, so what happens? Well industrialization was spreading, and during around 1910, the Mass industrialization of the world would occur, and Brazil would not need Slavery, and give rights to all African americans. Brazil in this timeline is the yin to Argentina's Yang. Argentina is one of the biggest producers of crops in the world, making Brazil the largest producers of crops in the world. In World War II Brazil and Argentina were part of the allies, and in this timeline food shortages with the Allies are a lot less common, saving more lives for the allies, as a lot more is produced. Brazil would halt all trade with the axis powers, causing a lot more of a problem to the Pacific and Atlantic powers of the Axis. Brazil’s status is elevated in the world drastically. Some would even say Brazil is the South American China. Brazil’s status in BRICS is a lot higher, as standards of living in Brazil are a lot larger. However In Modern day Brazil is a lot more known about in the world mainly because of it’s ancient civilization. People all know about Egypt because of its civilization, however In history classes everyone is reminded about Brazil and the Amazonians, and everyone is reminded about the Civilization of the New world.
However that would mean we should cut down the rainforest to make Brazil a global power. However that’s not the case. Trees hold carbon dioxide and whenever there cut down it’s released into the air, causing global warming, and also the Amazon just never being there means Brazil doesn’t have to worry about this. Let’s still save the rainforest, but it’s an interesting scenario
In 2010 Brazil’s population is not 207 million like in our timeline, but is instead in around the 270 millions, because of it’s history with good crops, and industrial revolution. The Rich class live on the coast of the Amazon, living in a sunny tropical paradise. However would something like save the rainforest take place? Well actually yes. As all pollution comes littering, and litter would enter the Amazon river, Disrupting wildlife, and polluting the water, and while there isn’t a large amount of wildlife as there is no rainforest, there is still a lot of wildlife because instead of a sacred rainforest, it’s a sacred prairie, and river, so littering would become illegal in Brazil. However the threat of Global warming is a lot more dangerous to Brazil. A lot of its population live near the amazon river, same with fertile crop land, so because of higher sea levels from the melting poles, if the amazon river widens, it threatens business, and Brazil becomes a big activist against global warming, and would threaten countries to cut down on a large amount of trade if they do not fix the pollution problems, mainly being America and China, affecting American and Chinese companies.
What we can assume if the Amazon rainforest was never formed in geological history, Brazil, and the World's history would be drastically changed, and Brazil’s role in the world, and in history would be drastically shifted. Brazil’s legacy would be that of a great nation, solidifying its importance of history.