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pands45 pandas cheyenne samagaio

Amazon Rainforest

The Brazilian government released preliminary figures showing nearly 9,000 square miles of the Amazon have been destroyed this year. Satellite images suggest that 8,920 square miles to 9,420 square miles -- an area larger than New Jersey -- was razed this year. In 2003, around 9,343 square miles (24,130 sq. km) of rainforest was lost. The satellite data showed a marked increase in deforestation along the BR-163 road, a highway the government has been paving in an effort to help soy farmers from Mato Grosso get their crops to export markets. Typically, roads encourage settlement by rural poor who look to the rainforest as free land for subsistence agriculture. To learn more about deforestation in the Amazon, check out these links:

The land reform agency allegedly collaborated with logging companies to identify areas of interest for timber extraction then set up large settlements in these tracts of rainforest instead of placing them in already deforested areas. Timber firms then purchased the land on the cheap for logging. Greenpeace says the scheme gave loggers access to attractive timber, while helping INCRA meet President Luiz Ignácio Lula da Silva's land reform targets just prior to his re-election campaign. Settlers won land and payments for selling holdings to loggers.


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