‘Tragedy foretold’: Brazil sees Amazon fires increase | Environmental news

Data from space agency INPE shows that more wildfires have been recorded in the Brazilian Amazon so far this year than all of 2021.

Official figures show that the vast Brazilian Amazon region has seen more wildfires this year than all of 2021, official figures show, driven by environmental rights groups and local person keep begging to protect more important rainforests.

Satellite tracking detected 75,592 fires between January 1 and September 18 of this year, higher than the 75,090 fires detected in the whole of last year, according to Brazil’s National Institute for Space Research (INPE). said on Monday.

Greenpeace Brazil spokesman Andre Freitas called the latest figures “foretold tragedy“.

“After four years of clear and objective anti-environmental policy by the federal government, we see that the term of this government – one of the darkest ever for the Brazilian environment – is over. Land grabbers and other illegal actors see it as the perfect opportunity to advance in the jungle,” Freitas said in a statement.

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, who seek re-election in the deeply polarizing elections next month, has faced international condemnation for the destruction of the Amazon.

The world’s largest rainforest has continuously set a new record for deforestation under the supervision of Bolsonaro, a far-right former army captain who has undermined environmental activism since he took office in 2019.

Since then, the average annual deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon has get a raise 75% more than a decade ago.

Bolsonaro dismissed the criticism, insisting that Brazil “protects its forests much better than Europe”.

But indigenous rights advocates in Brazil have denounced the Bolsonaro government for a wave of destruction, as well as increased threat throughout the Amazon region.

A study from earlier this year found that the territorial division of indigenous peoples in Brazil has acted as a barrier against deforestation over the past three decades – but rights groups say Bolsonaro’s administration has brought the land defense process to a halt.

On Sunday, indigenous groups rallied in Sao Paulo to protest what they describe as a “culture of impunity” that has resulted in dozens of deaths and illegal land grabs by miners and loggers. and ranchers in the rainforest.

These land disputes have led to conflict between indigenous tribes and groups that illegally invade protected land to exploit natural resources.

“We want to keep our people alive,” said Sonia Guajajara, an indigenous leader and congressional candidate. “We want our people alive to continue to fight for the environment, to fight for the waters, to fight for the mother Earth.”

The Indigenous Missionary Council, a group affiliated with the National Episcopal Conference of Brazil, has documented 305 cases of “invasion of property, illegal exploitation of resources and damage to property” in indigenous territories. location last year.

This is up from 109 such cases in 2018, the year before Bolsonaro took office – an increase of 180%.

Meanwhile, as Brazilians prepare to vote on October 2, concerns are growing that Mr Bolsonaro may refuse to accept the election results.

For months, Bolsonaro has been looking for a way sowing distrust in Brazil’s electronic voting system, saying there is no evidence that it is susceptible to fraud.

That statement has been approved by legal experts and criticswho accuses Bolsonaro of pushing false election fraud claims to disprove the results, similar to former US President Donald Trump, whom the Brazilian president emulated.

Most opinion polls predict that Bolsonaro will lose the election to his leftist opponent, former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.

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