By Peter McLaren-Kennedy • 10 April 2022 • 23:01
Amazon rainforest deforestation already at record levels in 2022
The report published on Friday April 8th says that 941.34 square kilometres of forest was cleared between January and March, the largest amount recorded since the institute began monitoring deforestation rates in 2016.
The rate of deforestation is according to the researchers up 64 percent on the same time last year with the area cleared nearly the size of Dallas, Texas.
Current Brazilian President Jair Bolsanaro had weakened environmental protections ever since he took office in 2019, saying that they hinder economic development. The president is also on record saying that he does not believe in the warnings issued by environmentalists, that the Amazon is the lungs of the world.
According to a UN climate panel report issued the day before, governments around the world are not doing enough to rein in greenhouse gases. They warn that fossil fuels are mostly to blame but that deforestation accounts for around 10 percent of global emissions.
Wars such as those in Ukraine are also said to be adding to the problem.
Scientists are concerned that deforestation in the Amazon will continue apace ahead of Brazils’ elections in October this year, as it has before the last three elections.
Carlos Souza Jr, a researcher at Imazon, a Brazilian research institution, said: “Environmental enforcement typically weakens in election years and criminals may rush to deforest ahead of a new government taking office.”
Cristiane Mazzetti, a forest campaigner in Brazil for environmental advocacy group Greenpeace added: “Brazil is an example of what the UN climate report is saying when referring to governments not taking the necessary actions.
“We have a government that goes deliberately against the necessary steps to limit climate change.”
On Thursday, Facebook’s parent company Meta announced that it had removed 14 Facebook accounts, nine Facebook pages, and 39 Instagram accounts for posting fake information related to deforestation. The accounts which Meta said: “Originated in Brazil and targeted domestic audiences in that country,” were found to be linked to individuals associated with the Brazilian Military.
With the world’s attention turned towards the was in Ukraine and to dealing with Covid-19, deforestation in the Amazon rainforest an continue apace as it reaches record levels in 2022.
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Originally from South Africa, Peter is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for the Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
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