The Amazon rainforest clearing in Brazil has risen by a fifth in a year, the most since 2006. Reuters Agency has published the government’s annual report. According to the agency, the findings contradict President Jair Bolsonaro’s claim that the Brazilian authorities deny illegal deforestation.
Amazon Rainforest Deforestation
The Amazon is spread over several countries, sixty percent in Brazil. Satellite data show that between August 2020 and July 2021, the Amazon rainforest in Brazil lost 13,235 square kilometers. The information was provided by Brazil’s Institute of National Space Research (INPE), dated October 27 this year, ahead of the COP26 climate conference in Glasgow.
An accelerating pace of deforestation is taking place, although President Bolsonaro is now trying to show that his government is serious about protecting the Amazon rainforest. At the recent COP26 climate conference in Glasgow, the Brazilian government announced a commitment to end illegal deforestation by 2028, but this would require significant year-on-year declines.
President Bolsonaro Supports Wood Logging
Before the start of Bolsonaro’s presidency, the Brazilian Amazon did not experience year-on-year deforestation of more than 10,000 square kilometers. The president supports the expansion of mining and commercial agriculture in protected parts of the Amazon rainforest.
The felling of the Brazilian rainforest doubled under Bolsonaro. Between 2009 and 2018, an average of 6,500 square kilometers of rainforest was cut down each year. Since then, however, the annual average has jumped to 11,405 square kilometers.
“It is a shame. It is a crime, “emphasizes Márcio Astrini, head of the Observatorio del Clima network of environmental non-profit groups. “We see the destruction of the Amazon rainforest by a government that has made environmental destruction its public policy,” he added.
The Amazon rainforest is home to about three million species of fauna and flora, and one million Native Americans. But scientists warn that clearing will cause the forest, the Earth’s lungs, to lose its ability to absorb carbon, which could help increase global warming.
Source: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-59341770, featured photo: Sentinel hub on Flicker.