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Environmentalists on Twitter respond harshly as Amazon deforestation reaches all time high

As the Amazon jungle reaches a new high in levels of deforestation, Conn Mc Gillion explores the reactions and the statistics on Twitter.

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Deforestation in the Amazon rainforest has reached a peak between August 2019 and July 2020, according to Brazil’s National Institute for Space Research (INPE).

The new statistics released to the public have sparked a heated debate among many environmentalists on Twitter, who only added to the damning evidence provided by the INPE. 

In those 12 months, this graph indicates a whopping 11,088 square kilometres were destroyed- which is the highest level since 2008, and has risen over 9.5% since the 2018-2019 period. 

There were also many who pointed to recent images and videos that have been taken of the Amazon- showing the forest in burning, or scorched ruins. 

The hashtag #Bolsonaro has been used to direct the backlash towards far right Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro. He has been frequently criticised for his open support of both logging and his defunding of agencies working to prevent illegal logging and land development. 

Greenpeace spokeswoman Christine Mazzetti and Guardian correspondent Tom Phillips among others, were quick to condemn the president’s regime.  https://twitter.com/tomphillipsin/status/1333558982003335170

US President-elect Joe Biden also pointed the figures out in the presidential debate in September, noting that he would be “making sure we had the countries of the world coming up with $20 billion to say ‘here’s $20 billion, stop tearing down the forest and if you don’t, you are going to have significant economic consequences.'”

Bolsonaro is yet to address the figures on social media, but did reject Biden’s offer in a tweet posted September 30th

Forests such as the Amazon are the most important parts of the Earth’s fight against global warming, due to their absorption of carbon from the atmosphere. The Amazon itself sucks in billions of tonnes of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere every year. 

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