Official figures from Brazil have shown a big increase in the number of fires in the Amazon region in July compared with the same month last year.

Satellite images compiled by Brazil’s National Space Agency revealed there were 6,803 – a rise of 28%.

President Jair Bolsonaro has encouraged agricultural and mining activities in the Amazon.

But under pressure from international investors in early July his government banned starting fires in the region.

The latest figures raise concerns about a repeat of the huge wildfires that shocked the world in August and September last year.

“It’s a terrible sign,” Ane Alencar, science director at Brazil’s Amazon Environmental Research Institute, was quoted as saying by Reuters news agency.

“We can expect that August will already be a difficult month and September will be worse yet.”

Mr Bolsonaro has criticised Brazil’s environmental enforcement agency, Ibama, for what he describes as excessive fines, and his first year in office saw a sharp drop in financial penalties being imposed for environmental violations. The agency remains underfunded and understaffed.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You May Also Like

Spain’s coronavirus death toll surges past China

Is there a risk of airborne transmission of COVID-19 from open air testing centers? Get all the latest news on coronavirus and more delivered daily to your inbox. Sign up here. Spain surged past China to now have the world’s second-highest tally of…

Airport hub set for Yangtze Delta

Blueprint for development envisions network for transport across region China is set to create a world-class airfield complex across the Yangtze River Delta region, according to a blueprint issued by the National Development and Reform Commission on Monday. The blueprint,…

No Big Ben bong to celebrate Brexit day after House speaker rejects Tory MPs’ proposal

With Brexit day (January 31) fast approaching, what could be more fitting than the sound of Britain’s most iconic bell tower reverberating on the strike of 11 o’clock in celebration – or so the Tory Brexiteers were hoping. It appears…

The simple, sustainable guide to making your own oat milk

There has never been more interest in plant-based alternatives to dairy milk. If you’re keen to do your bit for the environment but have trouble finding a supplier, here’s how to make your own drinks – and save money while…