The problem of deforestation in the Amazon rainforest has been escalating for many years. Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva has announced that he will fight this phenomenon. Published data shows that the rate of logging has fallen sharply. This is only the first step and further interventions are needed to rebuild the damaged tracts of land
The Amazon is an area of 7 million square kilometres. It is estimated that as much as 5.5 million sq km is rainforest. In recent decades, there has been intensive logging of precious trees in Brazil. The phenomenon intensified when Jair Bolsonaro was president of the country. His successor, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, spoke of the need to stop the felling of trees already during the presidential campaign. As smoglab.co.uk reports, when Bolsonaro was president, more than 45,000 square kilometres of forest were cut down in Brazil, the equivalent of half the forested area in the whole of Poland
A graph published by Brazil’s National Space Research Institute shows the scale of logging in 2023 compared to 2022. A year ago, April, May, June and July saw record amounts of area cleared from forests. This year, the trend is reversed – the bar for July is more than twice as small as in 2022. That month, 500 sq km of forest area was cut down – the least in six years
Of course, the problem of felling trees from the Amazon forest still exists, but for the first time ever there is a clear trend of change
The decrease in the dynamics of logging has been made possible by the changes introduced by the administration of the new president. Stopping the logging process has the support of the Brazilian government. Environment Minister Mirina Silva has indicated that her ministry’s goal is to save the country’s ecosystem
Inspectors from Brazil’s Institute of Environment and Renewable Natural Resources have also done their part in reducing the number of trees felled. This year, they have imposed a record number of fines for illegal tree felling. The amount of fines in the first seven months of 2023 exceeded US$400 million, an increase of 150 per cent compared to January-July 2022. European Union regulations, which ban the import of agricultural products that were produced in areas previously covered by forest, have also helped
It will only be possible to talk about the full success of the fight against logging in the Amazon when the number of trees cut down to zero. We are keeping our fingers crossed that the Brazilian authorities succeed in protecting this globally valuable green area
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