Deforestation rises as Brazil debates protection laws

DEFORESTATION is spiking in part of the Brazilian Amazon as the country debates changes to its rules on forest conservation. Brazil’s National Institute for Space Research says that 480 square kilometres of forest in Mato Grosso state was cleared in March and April combined – more than six times as much as in the same period last year. The main legal brake on deforestation is the national Forest Code, which requires farmers in the Amazon to retain 80 per cent of the forest as “legal reserves”. But this rule has been flouted for years,
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