Environment: Less deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon

Less deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon

A burned and deforested area in the Amazon region (archive image). photo

© Fernando Souza/ZUMA/dpa

Deforestation is continuing in the Brazilian Amazon region, but less than in the same period a year earlier. Overall, deforestation fell by 11 percent.

Deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon has decreased since the middle of last year. Between the beginning of August 2021 and the end of July 2022, an area of ​​11,568 square kilometers was deforested in the region, the National Institute for Space Research (Inpe) announced when presenting its annual report. This corresponds to more than twice the area of ​​the Ruhr area. In the same period a year earlier, it was 13,038 square kilometers. As a result, deforestation fell by 11 percent.

The index peaked in 2004 with around 27,700 square kilometers of deforested land. The rates then fell steadily to a low of 4,500 square kilometers in 2012. Deforestation then picked up again, especially since right-wing President Jair Bolsonaro took office in early 2019. The ex-military man will leave office at the turn of the year. “Bolsonaro took over the land with a deforestation rate of 7,500 square kilometers in the Amazon and now delivers it with 11,500 square kilometers,” said the director of the climate observatory, Marcio Astrini. Compared to the four years before him, the deforestation rate increased by 59.5 percent during Bolsonaro’s presidency.

The Brazilian Amazon is a major CO2 sink, stretches across nine Brazilian states and is the size of Western Europe in terms of area. Bolsonaro saw the Amazon region primarily as untapped economic potential and wanted to open up even more land for agriculture, mining and energy production. The future President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, on the other hand, announced that he would strengthen environmental and climate protection.



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