Fires in Brazil’s Amazon the worst in a decade, data shows

BRASILIA (Reuters) – Fires in Brazil’s Amazon increased 13% in the first nine months of the year compared with a year ago, as the rainforest region experiences its worst rash of fires in a decade, data from space research agency Inpe showed on Thursday.

Satellites in September recorded 32,017 hot spots in the world’s largest rainforest, a 61% rise from the same month in 2019.

In August last year, surging fires in the Amazon captured global headlines and prompted criticism from world leaders such as France’s Emmanuel Macron that Brazil was not doing enough to protect the rainforest.

On Tuesday, U.S. Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden called for a world effort to offer $20 billion to end Amazon deforestation and threatened Brazil with unspecified “economic consequences” if it did not “stop tearing down the forest.”

President Jair Bolsonaro lambasted Biden’s comment as a “cowardly threat” to Brazil’s sovereignty and a

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