In May and June this year, the amount of deforestation in the protected areas of the Singu Basin in Barra and Mato Grosso, Brazil, increased by 44.7% over the same period of last year, which aggravated the trend of deforestation in the Amazon. It will have an irreversible impact on the local ecosystem.
According to the latest information released by Rede Xingu+, from January to June this year, the Xingu Basin lost 60,897, hectares of forest.
There are 26 indigenous peoples and hundreds of riverside communities in the Xingu Basin, which depend on the normal operation of the local ecosystem to survive. Since more than half of the basin is composed of protected areas, as the protective shell of the eastern Amazon, the Xingu Basin is also the last area of the Amazon ecosystem to connect the Cerrado forest, which is crucial in biodiversity research.
Researchers at Xingu.com pointed out that although the dry climate in the middle of the year is conducive to deforestation and the speed of forest destruction in the Xingu Basin is normal, the scale of deforestation is very alarming.
Researchers believe that the increase in deforestation includes the government’s weakening of the fight against environmental crime. Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro and Environment Minister Ricardo Salles advocate changes in environmental policy and reduce punishment.
Since the beginning of this year, Amazon’s aboriginal land has been frequently invaded by illegal miners, and one of the areas most affected by mining activities is the Kayapo Aboriginal territory in the Xingu Basin.
Posonalo advocates mining on Aboriginal land and often says that “indigenous people cannot continue to be poor on wealthy land”.
Several major Aboriginal associations in Brazil are opposed to mining activities, fearing the impact on the indigenous society and the environment.
Researchers at Xingu.com pointed out that mining activities are the main cause of deforestation in the Xingu reserve.
The most affected protected area is Triunfo do Xingu in Barra. The entire protected area has lost 36% of its forests, mainly due to lack of regulations defining protected areas and lack of environmental monitoring actions.
Miguel Trefaut Rodrigues, a professor of zoology at the University of Sao Paulo, points out that the distribution and differentiation of species inhabiting Brazilian forests in the Xingu Basin is important because it is the last area in the Amazonian biological system that connects the Cerrado Forest. In the past, it was a corridor for the migration of species between the Atlantic Forest and the Amazon, and it was also a huge ecologically diverse environment.
Rodriguez said understanding how species migration takes place is one of the biggest challenges facing modern zoology, and related research will depend on forest conservation. When the forest in this corridor is destroyed, it will have an irreversible impact on the local ecosystem, and most Amazon animals will disappear forever.