Thursday, 21 November 2013

Deforestation increases across the Amazon

November 2013: Deforestation in Brazil rose by 28 percent last year, according to new figures released by Brazil’s environment ministry. In total 5,843 sq km of Amazon rainforest - an area half the size of Jamaica - was cleared between August 2012 and July 2013.

The two worst-affected states were Pará and Mato Grosso. Pará state experienced the biggest area of forest clearance – some 2,379 sq km – owing largely to illegal mining. That’s 37% higher than the previous year’s figure. Mato Grosso registered the highest increase in the rate of forest loss – up 52% since last year, to 1,149 sq km. 

In response to the new figures, Brazil’s environment minister Izabella Teixeira stressed that the state governments and local communities must work together to address threats to the rainforest from illegal logging and other activities. Through its partnership with the Amazon Cooperation Treaty Organisation (ACTO), the Brazilian government will also help to monitor and reduce deforestation in other Amazon countries.

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