In DepthENVIRONMENTAL POLICY

Amazon fires clearly linked to deforestation, scientists say

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Science  30 Aug 2019:
Vol. 365, Issue 6456, pp. 853
DOI: 10.1126/science.365.6456.853

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Summary

Brazil's government claims its policies aren't to blame for the fires ravaging the Amazon rainforest. But scientists in Brazil and elsewhere disagree. Satellite data show the rise in blazes is linked to a recent rise in deforestation, which is at least partly the result of government policies, they argue. Most of the fires occur in municipalities with the highest rate of deforestation this year. Many are active for several days, burning with intense heat and producing tall, thick, smoke pillars—all indicators that trees are on fire, not overgrown pastures, crop residues, or roadside vegetation.

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