The Amazon Rainforest is literally on fire. Large tracts of rainforests covering northwestern Brazil and extending into the country of Colombia, Peru and other South American countries have witnessed record breaking blazes this year. According to the INPE The National Space Research has recorded a total of 72,843 Amazon fires in 2019 alone which is 83% higher than 2018.

The Amazon is the lungs of the planet and it’s on fire

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The Amazon is regarded as the lungs of the planet that produces almost 20% oxygen in the earth’s atmosphere. The rainforests are vital to control global warming and they play host to hundreds of species of flora and fauna that are unaccountable. The Amazon fires is almost half the size of the USA and is the world’s largest rainforest.

The fires could be seen from space

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The fires are so bad that that the smoke was seen by NASA in space. The space agency released satellite images of fires and smoke in Brazil. NASA also noted that the current fire levels are only slightly below average in the last 15 years although a sudden spurt in fires has obviously made it appear a cause for concern. The Amazon fires are higher in states like Amazonas and Rondonia.

The INPE has spotted no less than 9507 new fires concentrated in the Amazon since August 15 and that’s just one week. The images released by NASA showed how the fire was smothering the South American regions.

Sao Paolo was plunged in darkness

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The Amazon fires have got so bad that Sao Paolo in Brazil was plunged in darkness as if some doomsday event was unfolding. Smoke was seen from more than 1700 miles away as the day turned into night when darkness enveloped the sky across the city.

Josélia Pegorim, Climatempo meteorologist, told Globo

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“The smoke did not come from fires from the state of Sao Paulo, but from very dense and wide fires that have been going on for several days in Rondônia and Bolivia. The cold front changed the direction of the winds and transported this smoke to Sao Paulo.”

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“Here in the Greater Sao Paulo region we had the combination of this excess humidity with the smoke, so it gave this appearance in the sky.”

Rodonia and Amazonias are in state of emergency

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The relentless blaze has forced the states of Rodonia and Amazonias to declare a state of emergency in the southern areas and the capital Manaus and Acre which borders Peru. The areas have been on high alert since August 16th.

The Amazon is the world’s biggest asset in climate change

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It is weird why this is happening as the Amazon is one of the world’s biggest assets in fighting climate change and is also the largest carbon store in the world which reduces the pace of global warming but now this. There has been an increasing number of droughts and human activity in the area in recent months such as farmers resorting to illegal deforestation for cattle ranching and INPE says that they cannot blame the dry season as the only cause for the Amazon fires.

A spokesman for the agency said “There is nothing abnormal about the climate this year or the rainfall in the Amazon region, which is just a little below average. The dry season creates the favorable conditions for the use and spread of fire, but starting a fire is the work of humans, either deliberately or by accident.”

The Brazilian President vows to cultivate the Amazon for farming, regards himself as Nero

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In fact what can be termed as a backward step for global warming, President Jair Bolsnaro even fired the INPE head Ricardo Galvao for inaccurate data on deforestation and has vowed to develop the Amazon for farming and mining. He was quoted as saying “I used to be called Captain Chainsaw. Now I am Nero, setting the Amazon aflame. But it is the season of the queimada.”

Quemida means burned and is the season when farmer’s burn fires to clear the land. When will damn humans ever learn?