Preliminary government data released on Friday has raised concern that the coming dry season will see even more deforestation of Brazil’s Amazon than last year’s surge of cutting.
The area deforested in May, determined based on satellite images, jumped 41% compared to the same month in 2020, according to daily alerts compiled by the National Institute for Space Research’s Deter monitoring system.
That data is considered a reliable leading indicator for more complete calculations released at year end.
May marks the beginning of the dry season in the Amazon, when deforestation tends to spike. Deforestation in the month reached 1,180 square kilometers (456 square miles), the most for any May in at least five years. April and March figures also topped all prior readings for those respective months since the 2015-2016 start of the data series.
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