Medium and large-sized farms account for 72% of the hot spots in 2019 in the four largest critical areas - the 'hotspots' - of the Amazon.
The conclusion comes from the Smoke Curtain project, launched on Wednesday (23) by Ambiental Media in partnership with the Pulitzer Center, through the Rainforest Journalism Fund.
The work crossed official public data on deforestation and fires, monitored by Inpe, with the Rural Environmental Registry (CAR), which gathers statements from rural owners about the area of their properties.
The four largest deforestation hotspots - Altamira (PA), SÃ£o FÃ©lix do Xingu (PA), Porto Velho (RO), and LÃ¡brea (AM) - were responsible for 17.5% of deforestation in the Legal Amazon that occurred between August 2018 and July 2019. They also top the list of municipalities with the most hot spots in 2019, according to the Inpe's Burning Database.
The approach of municipalities at the top of the deforestation and fires rankings shows a concentration of these activities on large properties, differently from what President Jair Bolsonaro pointed out at the UN General Assembly on Tuesday (22), when he blamed Indians and Caboclos for the fires in the Amazon.
When considering the entire Legal Amazon, the plots of responsibility for the fires are more distributed: 50% of the fires occurred on medium and large farms in the first half of 2020 and only 10% on small properties, according to a technical note from Ipam (Instituto de Pesquisa Ambiental) of the Amazon).
Rural settlements and indigenous lands account, respectively, for 11% and 12% of the fires in that period, while another 8% of the hot spots occur in public non-destined lands, which indicates land grabbing.
Translated by Kiratiana Freelon