Amid Amazon outrage tons of new fires burn

first_imgPorto Velhi (Brazil): Hundreds of new fires are raging in the Amazon rainforest in northern Brazil, official data showed on Saturday, amid growing international pressure on President Jair Bolsonaro to put out the worst blazes in years. The fires in the world’s largest rainforest have triggered a global outcry and are dominating the G7 meeting in Biarritz in southern France. Official figures show 78,383 forest fires were recorded in Brazil so far this year, the highest number of any year since 2013, and experts say the clearing of land during the months-long dry season to make way for crops or grazing has accelerated the deforestation. Also Read – India gets first tranche of Swiss bank a/c detailsMore than half of the fires are in the Amazon, and some 1,663 new fires were ignited between Thursday and Friday, according to the National Institute for Space Research. The new data came a day after Bolsonaro authorised the deployment of the military to fight the fires and crack down on criminal activities in the region. The blazes have stirred outrage globally, with thousands protesting in Brazil and Europe on Friday. The growing crisis threatens to torpedo a blockbuster trade deal between the European Union and South American countries, including Brazil, that took 20 years to negotiate. EU Council president Donald Tusk told reporters at the G7 on Saturday that it was hard to imagine European countries ratifying a trade pact with the Mercosur bloc as long as Brazil fails to curb the fires ravaging the Amazon, which is considered to be the “lungs of the planet” and crucial to keeping climate change in check. French President Emmanuel Macron, who has taken the lead in piling pressure on Bolsonaro over the fires, had earlier accused the far-right leader of lying to him about Brazil’s stance on climate change.last_img read more