Deforestation Continues in Brazil

A new report from the National Institute for Space Research (INPE) in Brazil has announced a total of 225 kilometres squared were destroyed during the month of July.

Settlement and deforestation surrounding the Brazilian town of Rio Branco are seen here in the striking "herring bone" deforestation patterns that cut through the rainforest.

The measurements were taken by DETER, the Alert System for Support and Control Deforestation which is able to analyse a region from space to determine whether any trees have disappeared over time.

The map below provides by yellow dots locations where an alert was issued by the satellite system. The pink areas refer to places that were obscured to the satellites lenses by cloud cover.

The chart below shows the deforestation record across the states of Brazil.

93,74 km²
52,42 km²
Mato Grosso
51,43 km²
16,12 km²
5,54 km²
3,29 km²
2,07 km²
0,33 km²
224,94 km²

According to Agence France-Presse this brought the total deforestation over the past 12 months in Brazil up by 15%, making a total loss of 2,654 square kilometers (1,649 square miles) in the states of Mato Grosso and Para alone.

However, numbers are looking ok in some places. While 225 square kilometres were lost this July, this is well down from the 477 square kilometres lost in April. And overall, since the peak of 27,000 square kilometres being lost in 2004, Brazil is doing much better, thanks in part to DETER and their commitment at the 2009 UN Climate Change Summit in Copenhagen to reduce Amazon deforestation by 80 percent by 2020.

Source: National Institute for Space Research (INPE)
Image Source: NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory

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