Deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon last month shattered the record for April. It destroyed more than 1,000 square kilometers of the world’s biggest rainforest. The record is the latest damning statistic on the accelerating loss of the Amazon under President Jair Bolsonaro.
Satellite images show a total area of destroyed forest cover of 1,012.5 square kilometers (391 square miles) from April 1 to 29. This is according to the Deter monitoring system run by the national space agency.
The area is equivalent to some 140,000 football fields. It is by far the biggest for April since record-keeping began in 2015. Deforestation is usually slower in April which is the rainy season in the Amazon. The previous record for the month was 580 square kilometers was also under Bolsonaro.
This figure is extremely high for this period of the year. It was said by Mariana Napolitano, science director at the World Wildlife Fund’s Brazil office. It’s an alert of the immense pressure the forest is under. Experts warn Brazil may have its fourth straight year of decade-high deforestation this year.
Since Bolsonaro took office in 2019, average annual deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon has risen more than 75 percent from the previous decade. The Bolsonaro administration is abetting deforestation and environmental crime, and what we harvest are these terrible, scary, revolting numbers. It was said by Marcio Astrini, head of the Climate Observatory, a coalition of environmental groups.
The far-right president, an ally of the powerful agribusiness industry blamed for driving the destruction. It has faced international condemnation over the damage to the Amazon. Actor and environmentalist Leonardo DiCaprio urged young Brazilians to vote in October elections in which Bolsonaro is up for re-election.