GCSE Cross Unit Task

The cross unit task is worth 10% of your final grade and is a piece of coursework that combines the weather and climate unit and people work and development unit. All your links and resources will be posted here. No excuses for leaving work at school anymore.

THE CROSS UNIT TASK You are employed as a planner to:

  1. Explain why Brazilian Government Policies are threatening the Amazon Rainforest
  2. Assess the effects of these policies by describing the Rainforest Ecosystem and how different groups of people are damaging it
  3. Advise the Brazilian government on ways that Roraima’s Rainforest could be managed in a sustainable way.

Set out your report in the following way

  • Introduction to the problem- First of all show where the rainforest is and explain a little about its structure and how it is a fragile ecosystem (mention nutrient cycles). Then go on to explain how current management plans (exploitation) of the rainforest is affecting the area. You can explain how the climate is changing and the physical effects of deforestation and other practices.
  • Assessment of the effects of these policies – How are different groups of people damaging the rainforest? Don’t forget all the different interest groups we mentioned in class and add any that you have researched. Use any figures or graphs at this point to make your point.
  • Advise the Brazilian governement on ways that Roraima’s rainforest could be developed without destroying it forever (sustainable management). You should consider the following.

What are the benefits for : Local indigenous people Other local People The people of Brazil How will the environment be conserved Local ecosystems Local Water, Weather and Climate Global Climate

  • A Management Plan should be included showing your ideas for the site in Roraima. You can include more than one idea. This has to be your own work. Your map should inlude a key and be annotated. This is the most important part of your work and lots of marks are awarded here. Your report should be detailed and split into the following sections depending on your ideas.

1. The main priority of your development plan 2. Why you chose to allow certain land uses and not others 3. The size and location of each of your chosed developments 4. How you have managed the rainforest. Here you should mention why you exploited certain areas or conserved others and how sustainable your plan is.

  • An evaluation – How you see the project over the next 10 to 20 years.

Here are some links and information to get you started


The Advance Brazil project is the latest Brazilian government plan which aims to develop roads, railways, waterways and hydroelectric dams in the Brazilian Amazon region, costing £27 billion. Using sophisticated computer models and satellite images, scientists have predicted that ‘Advance Brazil’ could completely destroy 28% of the rainforest and leave only 28% undisturbed. The scale of the project could have global impacts as a huge amount of the world’s biodiversity may be lost. Also, the rainforest will no longer act as an effective ‘sink’ to soak up the CO2 that contributes to global warming. Local climates may change too as the water cycle is disrupted. However, the Brazilian government argues that the rising population needs land to improve their quality of life, and the country needs to make money from natural resources to industrialise and to pay off foreign debt. The official English language website for the project is at


A more critical view of the project can be found here


Destruction of the rainforest



Consequences of deforestation


Conservation of the rainforest



Rainforest Facts http://www.rain-tree.com/facts.htm

‘Roads lead to Amazon Destruction’


Illegal logging in the Amazon Rainforest


Greenpeace article


Economic importance of the Amazon Rainforest


Arguments for economic development and consequent deforestation



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