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Surprising experts, Amazon deforestation hits highest level since 2006

Deforestation in Earth’s largest rainforest surged 22% to the highest level since 2006, according to official data released today by the Brazilian government.

Preliminary analysis of satellite data by Brazil’s national space research institute INPE shows that 13,235 square kilometers (5,110 square miles) of rainforest — an area nearly the size the land area of the state of Maryland or the country Montenegro — was cleared in the Brazilian Amazon between August 1, 2020 and July 31, 2021. Last year, 10,851 square kilometers of forest were chopped down.

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