Environmental News from South America:
Deforestation in Brazil’s Amazon rainforest reached a record high for the first six months of the year, as an area five times the size of New York City was destroyed, preliminary government data showed on Friday.
From January to June, 3,988 square km (1,540 square miles) were cleared in the region, according to the national space research agency Inpe.
That’s an increase of 10.6% from the same months last year and the highest level for that period since the agency began compiling its current DETER-B data series in mid-2015.
Destruction rose 5.5% in June to 1,120 square km, also a record for that month of the year.
The Amazon, the world’s largest rainforest, contains vast amounts of carbon, which is released as trees are destroyed, warming the atmosphere and driving climate change.
Deforestation is creeping deeper into the forest. In the first six months of the year, Amazonas state in the heart of the rainforest recorded more destruction than any other state for the first time.
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