Red Lake Nation News - Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

Three Things to Know About the Fires Blazing Across the Amazon Rainforest

Experts say the majority of blazes were set by farmers hoping to clear land for agricultural endeavors

 

August 23, 2019



Since January, a staggering 74,155 fires have broken out across Brazil, the country’s National Institute for Space Research (INPE) reported Wednesday. This figure—an 85 percent uptick from the same point in 2018—includes more than 9,000 blazes spotted within the past week and represents the highest rate recorded since documentation began in 2013.

Crucially, environmentalists point out, the vast majority of the infernos are not wildfires, but rather intentional land clearing attempts undertaken by farmers and loggers emboldened by Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro’s pro-business policies. Regardless of origin, the blazes, now large enough to be seen from space, pose a significant threat to the Amazon, which is popularly known as the “lungs” of the planet due to its capacity for storing carbon dioxide and producing oxygen. As Terrence McCoy writes for the Washington Post, the rainforest is “one of the world’s greatest defenses against climate change.”

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/three-things-know-about-fires-sweeping-through-amazon-rainforest-180972962/?utm_source=smithsoniandaily&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=20190822-daily-responsive&spMailingID=40484680&spUserID=NTkyNzY2ODg1MzgyS0&spJobID=1582083867&spReportId=MTU4MjA4Mzg2NwS2

 

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