Environment

Neither half-full nor half-empty, glass is overflowing or bone dry in the Amazon

While experts warn of a spate of forest fires after low rainfall in Amazonas, the state's main rivers are breaking their banks and flooding cities

amazon People walk on improvised footbridge in Manaus' city center after Rio Negro rises to record levels.
People walk on improvised footbridge in Manaus’ city center after the Negro River rose to record levels. Photo: Nelson Antoine/Shutterstock

The Amazon is the world’s largest river basin, covering the vast majority of Brazil’s North region and spilling over into eight other South American countries. The largest waterway in this system is the eponymous Amazon River, the largest in the world and the result of the confluence of the Negro and Solimões Rivers — all three of which cut through the vast Brazilian state of Amazonas.

Amid record levels of deforestation, the Amazon region is facing a climate dilemma.

While parts of the river basin have seen above-average levels of rainfall — causing waterways to...

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