Tuesday, July 1, 2014

And Now For Someone Who Didn't Qualify

One of the first things you think of regarding Brazil, alongside soccer and Rio and Carnival and all that is on display in Carnival, is the Amazon. We're done in there for the Cup, as no more games are scheduled in Manaus, but one of the main things you probably know about the Amazon- aside from anything you might have gotten out of those videos I linked you to earlier in the Cup- is that it's been getting progressively deforested for decades. Likely, you think of it as the world's most dramatic deforestation.

Until recently, you'd be right on that point, but according to a study by the University of Maryland (the original of which is behind a $32 paywall), while they're still not looking good at all, Brazil no longer has the title. It's been rather forcefully taken by Indonesia. In 2012 alone, Indonesia lost 840,000 hectares (3,243 square miles, aka nearly the size of Puerto Rico) of primary forest, a rate that is accelerating; Brazil lost 460,000. Indonesia is a quarter of the size of Brazil, mind you.

At least 40% of the Indonesian logging was illegal logging. At least. That's how much was done in areas explicitly off-limits to logging. There's no word on how much more of it is illegal, as the data had to be taken from satellite photos because official government data was deemed unreliable.

As the World Cup isn't going to Indonesia anytime soon, let's hope this isn't the last you hear of it.

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