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Tue Jun 4, 2019, 11:09 PM

They are cutting the lungs out of our planet! It will kill US. [View all]

Satellite data shows Amazon deforestation rising under Brazil's Bolsonaro

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-brazil-environment-deforestation-idUSKCN1T52OQ



BRASILIA (Reuters) - Deforestation of the Amazon rainforest in Brazil sped up in May to the fastest rate in a decade, according to data from an early-warning satellite system, as experts pointed to activity by illegal loggers encouraged by the easing of environmental protections under President Jair Bolsonaro.

According to the Brazilian space research institute INPE, the DETER alerting system registered deforestation of 739 square kilometers (285 square miles) in May, the first of three months in which logging tends to surge following the region’s rainy season.

That is up from 550 square kilometers in May 2018 and more than double the deforestation detected two years earlier.

“If this upward curve continues, we could have a bad year for the Amazon forest,” Claudio Almeida, head of INPE’s satellite monitoring program, said on Tuesday. “It will depend on how much policing there is in the next two critical months,” he added.

The data adds to concerns from environmentalists who warn that Bolsonaro’s five-month-old government has dismantled conservation agencies, shown skepticism about fighting climate change and cut the budget to enforce environmental laws.

Brazil’s environmental protection agency IBAMA, which has been starved of funds in recent years, lost authority when he took office in January, and the forestry commission was moved to the Agriculture Ministry, which is run by farm industry allies.


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