The World Research Institute pointed out that non-fire losses of Brazilian tropical forests were associated with a rate of agricultural expansion that increased by 9 percent from 2020 to 2021.
At a meeting with Brazilian lawmakers held on Friday, the European Commissioner for the Environment Virginijus Sinkevicius spoke in favor of protecting Amazonian forests.
"The world can no longer afford to lose more forests and neither can a healthy Brazilian economy. It’s possible to cut deforestation sharply with a clear plan & targets and unlock a sustainable economic model," he tweeted.
Sinkevicius arrived in Manaus city to also meet with local authorities, social activists, and representatives of the Indigenous peoples.
Previously, the World Research Institute (WRI) published on Thursday the latest edition of the "Forest Pulse", a scientific report showing that the world's largest area of tropical forests was lost in Brazil in 2021.
Criminal and heartbreaking. Impact of wildcat mining evident in before and after pics of once stunning waterfall in indigenous lands in Roraima, Brazil. Linked to ally of Bolsonaro. This is happening across Amazon. https://t.co/SLGkc3sfE4 pic.twitter.com/k6RNn2MDck— jonathanwatts (@jonathanwatts) February 8, 2021
Last year around 3.75 million hectares of primary humid tropical forest disappeared worldwide. Of that amount, 1.5 million hectares corresponded to Brazil, a country where President Jair Bolsonaro is interested in promoting "business opportunities" in the Amazon.
"The rate of primary forest loss in Brazil has been persistently high the past several years. Loss related to fires has fluctuated depending on the level of out-of-control forest fires, most recently with a spike in 2020 in the Amazon and the Pantanal. Meanwhile, non-fire losses, which in Brazil are most often associated with agricultural expansion, increased 9 percent from 2020 to 2021," the WRI report stated.
"This finding is consistent with Brazil's official monitoring system PRODES, which found that 2021 had the highest rate of clear-cut deforestation in the Amazon since 2006, when measures were put in place to drastically reduce deforestation."