Amazon rainforest lost area larger than NYC in October, data shows

amazon deforestation
Deforested area along an illegal dirt road used for agriculture and livestock in the Jamanxim National Forest, Pará. Photo: Paralaxis/Shutterstock

While the Brazilian government tries to improve the country’s image internationally by pledging to reduce carbon emissions, the National Space Research Institute (Inpe) showed that almost 800 square kilometers of the Amazon rainforest were deforested in October, an area larger than New York City.

It was the second-worst figure for the month of October on record — only better than last year’s. 

The lion’s share of Brazil’s carbon emissions come from deforestation. When land emissions are factored in, the country becomes the fourth-biggest contributor to climate change emissions since 1850, according to a new report by think tank Carbon Brief.

Last week, the Brazilian Climate Observatory, a non-profit organization, stated that Brazil is emitting more CO2 into the atmosphere than at any point in the past 14 years. During the COP26 summit, Environment Minister Joaquim Silva committed Brazil to the following deforestation-reduction goals:

  • 15 percent by 2024;
  • 40 percent a year in both 2025 and 2026;
  • 50 percent in 2027,
  • And zero deforestation by 2028.