SATELLITE images released by NASA show the horrifying extent of the wildfires currently raging across the Amazon rain forest.
The pictures show thick grey smoke covering a huge portion of the South American land mass, and come as Brazil announces that 44,000 troops will be made available to tackle the blazes.
Satellite images show the horrifying extent of the fire in the Amazon rain forest[/caption]
Recent months have seen record-breaking fires sweep through the world’s largest rain forest.
Since the start of the year, there have been more than 75,000 fires across Brazil, 40,000 in the Amazon alone, with NASA data confirming 2019 has been the “most active fire year” since 2010.
The fires have sparked international concern, with Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro coming under intense pressure to do more to address the fires.
The tress of the Amazon produce 20 per cent of the oxygen we breathe, and the region is often referred to as the “lungs of the Earth”.
Bolsonaro has previously voiced opposition to environmental conservation, and spoken in favour of expanding mining and industrial farming in the Amazon and other protected areas.
Monitoring groups warn that deforestation in the Amazon has risen 20 per cent this year.
Speaking to National Geographic, ecologist Thomas Lovejoy described a cycle in which deforestation fuels forest loss, which makes the region drier, which increases the number of fires, which further fuels deforestation.
Much of the rain in the Amazon is also generated by the rain forest itself, so as trees disappear, rainfall declines.
MOST READ IN WORLD NEWS
“This is without any question one of only two times that there have been fires like this” in the Amazon, Thomas Lovejoy said.
“There’s no question that it’s a consequence of the recent uptick in deforestation.”
We pay for your stories! Do you have a story for The Sun Online news team? Email us at email@example.com or call 0207 782 4368 . You can WhatsApp us on 07810 791 502. We pay for videos too. Click here to upload yours.