Since the 1970s, hundreds of thousands of poor peasants have streamed into the Brazilian Amazon in a desperate search for farmland.
Many of them arrive only to find that rainforest soils cannot sustain the kinds of crops they knew back home. So they end up in a vicious cycle – slashing and burning new areas of forest year after year.
Now, a small group of farmers living in the most devastated region of the Amazon is trying an alternative. Some say it may become a model to stop the destruction of the jungle.
Narration is by Edward James Olmos, who hosted a series of 13 half-hour Vanishing Homelands specials.