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Fires in Brazil’s Amazon Surge to Highest Rate in 13 Years

HeadlineJul 02, 2020

In Brazil, new government data show fires in the Amazon region jumped by 20% in June to a 13-year high for the month. Campaigners say most of the fires were deliberately set by illegal miners and cattle ranchers, with the encouragement of far-right President Jair Bolsonaro. Environmentalist Carlos Souza Jr. says smoke from the fires could compound respiratory problems for Brazilians who are already suffering from one of the world’s worst outbreaks of COVID-19.

Carlos Souza Jr.: “The clearing of land already represented a serious health problem. If we have land clearing and COVID-19 together, this could bring catastrophic consequences for the residents of the region.”

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