Illegal fires rage in Amazon rainforest after Brazil outlawed them

Sci-Tech


The shocking condition of the Amazon has been caught on camera by conservationists as illegal wildfires ravage the rainforest. 

Images from Greenpeace taken between July 7 and 10 show the Brazilian state of Mato Grosso ablaze despite it being illegal to start fires in the state since July 1st.

As of yesterday, the Brazilian authorities extended this ban to include the country’s entire rainforest for 120 days.   

Hotspots in an area with degraded forest, in Mato Grosso state. Every year, Greenpeace Brazil flies over the Amazon to monitor deforestation build up and forest fires

Images from Greenpeace taken between July 7 and 10 show the Brazilian state of Mato Grosso ablaze despite it being illegal to start fires in the state since July 1st (pictured)

 Images from Greenpeace taken between July 7 and 10 show the Brazilian state of Mato Grosso ablaze despite it being illegal to start fires in the state since July 1st (pictured) 

Images taken by the conservation charity also document vast swathes of land that have already been razed. Areas being actively prepared for burning have also been captured on film

Images taken by the conservation charity also document vast swathes of land that have already been razed. Areas being actively prepared for burning have also been captured on film

Images taken by the conservation charity also document vast swathes of land that have already been razed. Areas being actively prepared for burning have also been captured on film. 

Land is deliberately burned to allow illegal commercial activities such as livestock farming and mining to take place.  

The charity is putting the blame squarely in the lap of the Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, a notorious climate change sceptic. 

He also repeatedly flouted lockdown during the coronavirus pandemic despite his country being ravaged by the disease. He has since tested positive for COVID-19, twice. 

He is under enormous pressure to listen to conservationists who say his pro-mining and reckless deforestation policies for agriculture will devastate the rainforest.  

As a result of increased wildfires and record-breaking levels of deforestation, Bolsonaro issued a three-month ban on all fires and continues to deploy the army to tackle the issue. 

However, campaigners say this is nothing more than bluster and smokescreens.  

Romulo Batista, Greenpeace Brazil Amazon campaigner, said: ‘Banning fires alone does not work. 

‘Those calling on the Brazilian government to act cannot fool themselves and think that President Bolsonaro’s sloppy PR moves will have meaningful impacts. 

Greenpeace is putting the blame squarely in the lap of the Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, a notorious climate change sceptic. He also repeatedly flouted lockdown during the coronavirus pandemic despite his country being ravaged by the disease. He has since tested positive for COVID-19, twice

Greenpeace is putting the blame squarely in the lap of the Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, a notorious climate change sceptic. He also repeatedly flouted lockdown during the coronavirus pandemic despite his country being ravaged by the disease. He has since tested positive for COVID-19, twice

Bolsonaro is under enormous pressure to listen to conservationists who say his pro-mining and reckless deforestation policies for agriculture will devastate the rainforest

Bolsonaro is under enormous pressure to listen to conservationists who say his pro-mining and reckless deforestation policies for agriculture will devastate the rainforest

Preliminary data from the country's National Institute for Space Research (INPE) published last week revealed June 2020 was the 14th consecutive month where deforestation has increased in the Brazilian amazon

Preliminary data from the country’s National Institute for Space Research (INPE) published last week revealed June 2020 was the 14th consecutive month where deforestation has increased in the Brazilian amazon

Amazon deforestation surges by 25 per cent in a YEAR

Deforestation in Brazil’s Amazon has risen by a quarter since last year, official statistics show.  

The rainforest is also on course for its worse year on record and in the first half of 2020, 1,184 square miles (3,069 square kilometres) — an area ten times the size of Paris — was destroyed. 

Preliminary data from the country’s National Institute for Space Research (INPE) show June was the 14th consecutive month where deforestation has increased. 

June marks the start of the dry season and Brazil has been criticised by a number of countries and environmental groups over large-scale deforestation and fires.

Deforestation and fires in Brazil’s Amazon released 115 million metric tonnes of carbon dioxide in the first half of 2020, up roughly 20 per cent from the same period a year ago.

 

‘These images, along with the record deforestation rates this year, are the intended outcome of Bolsonaro’s long term strategy for the Amazon. 

‘His government has been dismantling environmental protection laws and kneecapping the power of the environmental protection agencies since he took office. 

‘They have even used the COVID-19 pandemic as a smokescreen to further enable deforestation, logging and mining.

‘This administration is doing nothing but putting the climate and more lives at risk, especially those of Indigenous Peoples. 

‘Protecting the capacity to monitor and stop environmental destruction and to enforce the law is essential.’

Preliminary data from the country’s National Institute for Space Research (INPE) published last week revealed June 2020 was the 14th consecutive month where deforestation has increased in the Brazilian amazon. 

It found that deforestation in Brazil’s Amazon has risen by a quarter since last year and the rainforest is also on course for its worse year on record.

In the first half of 2020, 1,184 square miles (3,069 square kilometres) — an area ten times the size of Paris — was destroyed.  

A report issued recently from RSPB and the WWF found Britain’s obsession with timber, leather and beef ‘is having a heavy impact’ on the Amazon rainforest and contributing to wildfires.

The latest figures suggest that 2,248 fire outbreaks were detected in the Amazon biome for the month of June – the highest number for 13 years.

For the first 14 days of July, there were a further 1,057 fires recorded in the biome.

Brazil represents 13.9 per cent of the UK overseas land footprint, according to a new report, equal to about 800,000 hectares or five times the area of Greater London.  

The WWF and RSPB have called on the UK government to introduce new laws and policies to take deforestation of natural habitats out of the supply chain. 

A government spokesperson said they were considering all the recommendations from the report including a mandatory due diligence obligation. 

Research from Brazil's space agency found that deforestation in Brazil's Amazon has risen by a quarter since last year and the rainforest is also on course for its worse year on record

Research from Brazil’s space agency found that deforestation in Brazil’s Amazon has risen by a quarter since last year and the rainforest is also on course for its worse year on record

The latest figures suggest that 2,248 fire outbreaks were detected in the Amazon biome for the month of June - the highest number for 13 years. For the first 14 days of July, there were a further 1,057 fires recorded in the biome

The latest figures suggest that 2,248 fire outbreaks were detected in the Amazon biome for the month of June – the highest number for 13 years. For the first 14 days of July, there were a further 1,057 fires recorded in the biome

Brazil represents 13.9 per cent of the UK overseas land footprint, according to a new report, equal to about 800,000 hectares or five times the area of Greater London. The WWF and RSPB have called on the UK government to introduce new laws and policies to take deforestation of natural habitats out of the supply chain

Brazil represents 13.9 per cent of the UK overseas land footprint, according to a new report, equal to about 800,000 hectares or five times the area of Greater London. The WWF and RSPB have called on the UK government to introduce new laws and policies to take deforestation of natural habitats out of the supply chain

Romulo Batista, Greenpeace Brazil Amazon campaigner, said: 'Banning fires alone does not work. 'Those calling on the Brazilian government to act cannot fool themselves and think that President Bolsonaro's sloppy PR moves will have meaningful impacts'

Romulo Batista, Greenpeace Brazil Amazon campaigner, said: ‘Banning fires alone does not work. ‘Those calling on the Brazilian government to act cannot fool themselves and think that President Bolsonaro’s sloppy PR moves will have meaningful impacts’



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