Friday, November 27, 2015

Destruction of Brazil's Amazon Forest Jumps 16 Percent in 2015

An aerial view of a deforested plot of the Amazon at the Bom Futuro National Forest in Porto Velho, Rondonia State, Brazil, September 3, 2015. (Credit: Reuters/Nacho Doce) Click to Enlarge.
The destruction of Brazil's Amazon forest, the world's largest intact rainforest, increased by 16 percent in 2015 from a year ago as the government struggles to enforce legislation and stop illegal clearings.

Satellite data for the 12 months through the end of July released on Thursday showed that 5,831 square km (2,251 square miles) of forests were cleared in the Brazilian Amazon, an area half the size of Puerto Rico.

The data released by the environment ministry on Thursday confirmed preliminary information released by environmental institutions recently that were showing an increase in deforestation after a fall seen in 2014.

It comes at a sensitive moment for the Brazilian government as countries around the world gather in Paris to discuss a new global climate agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.  Deforestation makes up to around 15 percent of world's heat-trapping gases, more than the entire transport sector.

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