"The vast majority of these fires are human-lit," said Christian Poirier, the program director of the non-profit organization, Amazon Watch.
Despite environmentalists resounded the alarm on the increasing rate of human-activities which has, in turn, harm our nature, the warnings seem to have fallen on deaf ears. Now, with the Amazon fire ablaze who do you think is to blame? According to a report by CNN, environmental experts believe the wildfire in the Brazilian rainforest to be a result of cattle ranchers and loggers clearing and utilizing the area.
This practice is believed to be encouraged by the country's president, Jair Bolsonaro, who is all about the upliftment of business. Responding to this accusation, Mr. Bolsonaro shifted the blame onto non-governmental organizations and accused them of starting the fires and damaging the government's reputation. The climate skeptic went on to say that the government lacked enough resources to contain the flames destroying the land.
The non-profit organization Amazon Watch's program director, Christian Poirier said, "The vast majority of these fires are human-lit." He also added how the Amazon being a humid rainforest doesn't catch on fire as easily as the dry bushlands in California or Australia. Explaining further, Poirer said that ranchers and farmers have long been using the method of burning lands to clear areas and thus is likely to have increased numbers of forest fires that have been burning the Amazon today.
Amazon Rainforest in particular is known as 'the Lungs of the World' because it sucks up 25% global emissions of carbon dioxide , and about 20% of earth's oxygen is produced by the Amazonia.— Nandhan HD (@NandhanHD) August 23, 2019
And now its burning due to man's greed and nature’s fury.#PrayfortheAmazon pic.twitter.com/LylIBMnzyu
The Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas Espaciais (INPE) announced this week that the number of fires in Brazil has been 80% higher than last year. And more than half of these incidents happened in the Amazonian region, creating havoc in the prevalent ecological system of the region. A senior scientist at the INPE, Alberto Setzer expressed how 99% of these fires are a result of human actions "either on purpose or by accident." Now, the burning could range from "a small-scale agricultural practice to new deforestation for a mechanized and modern agribusiness project," said Setzer via an email according to CNN.
Also known as "the planet's lungs," the Amazon forest account for 20% of the oxygen in the world. However, World Wildlife Fund warns, if it is irrevocably damaged, it would start emitting carbon and would be a major driving force towards climate change, the impending danger. On Wednesday, environmental minister, Ricardo Salles said in a tweet that the fires were caused by heat, dry weather, and wind. However, Haley Brink, a CNN meteorologist was of the view that they were "definitely human-induced" and could not be attributed to other natural causes.
Exposing the established seasonal agricultural pattern of farmers, Brink said, "It's the best time to burn because the vegetation is dry. [Farmers] wait for the dry season and they start burning and clearing the areas so that their cattle can graze. And that's what we're suspecting is going on down there." And with the peak, dry season waiting to wreak havoc in September, this year's destruction is "unprecedented" as compared to last year, added Poirier. As per BBC News, the official figures recorded more than 75,000 forest fires in Brazil during the first eight months of 2019 which is the highest number recorded ever since 2013. In 2018, the figures showed 40,000 during the same period of time.
The lungs of the Earth are in flames. The Brazilian Amazon—home to 1 million Indigenous people and 3 million species—has been burning for more than two weeks straight. #PrayForTheAmazon pic.twitter.com/2d0erLu3a9— SONAL CHAUHAN (@sonalchauhan7) August 23, 2019
The raging fire has been said to have released a huge amount of carbon dioxide, the equivalent of 228 megatonnes so far this year alone, and has been reportedly said to be the highest since 2010. The emission of toxic carbon monoxide has resultantly increased as well, affecting several areas and spreading beyond the Southern coastline of America. Crying for the burning forest, several activists and social media users around the world have raised their voice using the hashtag #PrayForTheAmazon.
The burning of the Amazon rainforest is the most pressing story of the day. If we lose too much, we can’t effectively fight climate change. Inexplicably, elected leaders in the U.S. and Brazil don’t seem to care. But here’s how YOU can help:https://t.co/96iYLSE8qp— Seth MacFarlane (@SethMacFarlane) August 23, 2019
Now, people are demanding an answer form the Brazilian President, who promised to explore Amazon's economic potential when he was running for office. Obviously, environmental organizations believe that his encouragement toward the activity has made farmers and ranchers exploit the rainforest like never before. The business hungry President recently fired the director of INPE after he defended the satellite data showing an 88% increase in deforestation, to which Bolsonaro dismissed them as "lies." Now, shrugging of responsibility is not an option and something has to be done soon else, we are heading towards the inevitable deterioration sooner than expected.
#RebelForTheAmazon: #OurLungsAreOnFire starts 11 AM at the Brazilian Embassy in London:https://t.co/ZWWMYlhZ91— Extinction Rebellion ⌛️ (@ExtinctionR) August 23, 2019
The Brazilian Government must STOP the fire & PROTECT the Amazon & its life. #PrayForTheAmazon#PrayforAmazonas@XRFamilies @XRLondon @XRebellionUK @UkBwaf pic.twitter.com/9MA555d64y