The destruction of the Amazon rainforest in 2022 reached the worst mark in 15 years of measurements by the Instituto do Homem e Meio Ambiente da Amazônia (Imazon). Between January and September, 9,096 km² of native vegetation were deforested in the biome, equivalent to six times the size of the city of São Paulo.
The numbers, from the Deforestation Alert System (SAD) of the Institute, were released Oct. 18. This was the fifth consecutive time that the numbers accumulated in the period show an increase, with the worst rates of destruction recorded during the Bolsonaro government. For a decade, from 2008 when the SAD came into operation until 2017, the accumulated deforestation in the first nine months of the year remained below 3,500 km².
“These high levels of destruction not only threaten biodiversity and traditional peoples and communities, but also affect the lives of the entire Brazilian population. The clearing of the forest has an impact on the increase in greenhouse gas emissions, which are largely responsible for climate change and extreme events”, explains Imazon researcher Bianca Santos.
This is a summary. Read the full story in Portuguese on ((o))eco's website.
This story was produced as part of the 2022 Climate Change Media Partnership, a journalism fellowship organized by Internews' Earth Journalism Network and the Stanley Center for Peace and Security. It was first published in Portuguese by ((o))eco on 18 October and has been lightly edited for length and clarity.
Banner image: Overflights in southern Amazonas and northern Rondônia in July 2022 portrayed the extent of deforestation and fires in the Amazon / Credit: Christian Braga/Greenpeace.