First half of 2022 breaks deforestation record in Brazil

By Carlos Rittl.

First half of 2022 breaks deforestation record in Brazil

New figures from the Brazilian Space Agency confirm this grim record of Amazon destruction, exposing the highest deforestation rates ever recorded.

Brazil’s Space Agency (Inpe) detected 3.750 km2 of Amazon deforestation between the 1 January and 24 June. With still six days of June deforestation data to be added, figures for 2022 are already the worst ever recorded for the period January-June, since their Deter B system was released in 2015.

The first six months of 2022 breaks all deforestation records for Brazil. Illustration: INPE/DETER B

“The deforestation in Brazil is outrageous. At COP26 the government of Brazil committed to reaching zero illegal deforestation by 2028. However, these numbers confirm the same government’s lack of control with illegalities. These numbers are yet another wake-up call to the international community of the consequences of the dismantling of environmental policies in Brazil,” says Toerris Jaeger, Secretary-General of Rainforest Foundation Norway.

Brazil is under growing pressure from the international community due to the forest destruction rates and violence against indigenous people and environmental defenders.

On 5 June, the World Environment Day, the indigenous issues expert Bruno Pereira and the journalist Dom Phillips were murdered in the Javari Valley, in the Brazilian Amazon. The incident evoked increasing international criticism against the government of President Jair Bolsonaro, due to its condoning of environmental criminals and push to weaken environmental legislation, like those protecting indigenous people’s rights.

“The international community needs to show that the ever growing destruction of the Amazon and increased threats to those living there need to stop immediately," says Jaeger and adds:
"This should for example be done by clearly stating that improvements are needed in Brazil before trade agreements may be ratified or an OECD membership can be completed. Anyone who doesn’t put up these conditions is helping to fuel the dismantling of environmental and human rights mechanism in Brazil”, added Jaeger.