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International

They slash, we all could burn

Brazilian slash and burn farmers could be threatening the rest of the planet. That's the kernel of a report today from McLatchy newspapers.
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Written by Harry Fuller, Contributor on

Brazilian slash and burn farmers could be threatening the rest of the planet. That's the kernel of a report today from McLatchy newspapers.

Though deforestation has decreased the past three years according to official stats, Brazil's government figures over 3800 square miles of tropical forest will disappear this year. That's equivalent to an area 1.5 times the size of Delaware. And the market for fuel produced from Brazilian sugar cane will only encourage more slash and burn. So biofuel will fuel Brazil's continuing contribution to greenhouse gases and reduction of forest.

The report explains the importance of Brazil's forest: "The 1.5-million-square-mile Brazilian Amazon, larger than the entire nation of India, contains more than 40 percent of the world’s rain forests, and about a fifth of it already has disappeared, mostly in an “arc of deforestation” along the forest’s southern and eastern edges."

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