Fires in the Brazilian Amazon increased by 28% in July compared to the same month of 2019 and threaten to expand in the coming months, given the fear of environmentalists that the tragedy experienced last year in the largest tropical forest on the planet will be repeated .
Satellite images detected a total of 6,803 fire sources in July, compared to 5,318 sources registered in the same month of 2019, according to data provided by the National Institute for Space Research (INPE).
On July 30 alone, 1,007 outbreaks were counted in the Amazon rainforest, which is the highest number for the month in the last 15 years, according to the Greenpeace organization, which warned of an "upward trend" of fires this year .
The increase in fires, the highest for the month of July since 2017, has continued despite the measures recently announced by the Government of President Jair Bolsonaro in the face of international pressure after the devastating fires of 2019.
At the beginning of June, the Executive launched an operation in the Amazon region to prevent environmental crimes, including the indiscriminate felling of trees, and a month later announced the prohibition for a period of 120 days of the use of fire in the jungle, a traditional practice for preparing planting fields.
Fires in the Amazon tend to spread in the dry months in areas that have previously been deforested, one of the great problems facing the ecosystem and that has worsened in recent times.
According to Greenpeace, between 2004 and 2012 deforestation in the Amazon fell by 80%, but since 2012 there has been an “inversion” in this curve, especially in the last two years, a fact that environmentalists attribute to anti-environmental rhetoric. of the leader of the Brazilian extreme right.
The president came last year to question the official deforestation data and has committed during his mandate not to homologate more indigenous lands, but in recent months the Government has tried to moderate its image in the face of the risk of an international boycott.
Global fund pressure
Brazil's vice president, General Hamilton Mourao, recently pledged to adopt possible measures to contain the destruction in the Amazon, under pressure from investors who threaten to withdraw from the country if this degradation is not stopped.
But the measures announced so far by the Executive, according to Greeanpece, are “media"And aim to"appease and calm foreign investors”After the devastating fires of 2019, whose images went around the world and were widely condemned by the international community.
For the environmental organization, deforestation needs to be fought throughout the year and not only on specific dates, given that the Amazon fires "They are not the result of a natural phenomenon, but of human action“.
“The government's speech is media. Deforestation and fires are not fought with a military operation for a few months", Stressed Romulo Batista, spokesman for Greenpeace.
Batista denounced the absence of an environmental policy by the Bolsonaro Government and criticized the recent statements of the Minister of the Environment, Ricardo Salles, who in a ministerial meeting suggested relaxing environmental rules taking advantage of the fact that media attention is focused on the new coronavirus pandemic .
“The Government is on the side of those who commit illegalities”In the Amazon, Batista added.