Deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon increased 34.5 per cent between August 2019 and July 2020, with a total of 9,205 square km of forest destroyed.
On Friday, The National Institute for Space Research (INPE), which calculates deforestation using the Real-Time Deforestation Detection System, which monitors the world’s largest forest by satellite, said that 1,654 square km of forest were destroyed in July, less than that in the same period last year, reports Xinhua news agency.
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This is the first time in 14 months that destruction in the Amazon recorded a monthly decline.
Meanwhile, the world’s largest rainforest also witnessed 2,248 fires in June, the highest level for the month in 13 years.
Overall, there were 6,803 fires, a rise of 28 per cent.
The figures came at a time when the Brazilian government is receiving harsh criticism from the international community for its alleged lack of commitment in combating the destruction of the Amazon.
In response, the Brazilian government promised to tighten enforcement to limit environmental crime in the region.
Deforestation in the region has soared since President Jair Bolsonaro took office last year, according to conservation groups.
He has argued that more farming and mining in protected areas of the forest were the only way to lift the region out of poverty.
Bolsonaro’s environmental policies have been widely condemned but he has rejected the criticism, saying Brazil remains an example for conservation. (IANS)