Leaders from the wealthy countries in the world have called the Amazon forests fires in Brazil an emergency that needs to be discussed.
French President Emmanuel Macron took to twitter saying that Amazon fire is an “international crisis”.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the “acute emergency” belonged on the agenda of the upcoming G7 Summit in France. United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres also expressed concern about the fires that have reached a record number this year, devastating vast swathes of forest considered a vital bulwark against climate change.
The UN chief said he was “deeply concerned” by the fires, adding, “We cannot afford more damage to a major source of oxygen and biodiversity.”
However, Brazil’s president scoffed at the concern expressed by global leaders.
Jair Bolsonaro has accused Mr. Macron of meddling for “political gain”. He said calls to discuss the fires at the G7 summit in which Brazil is not participating evoke “a misplaced colonialist mindset”.
Federal prosecutors in Brazil said they were investigating a spike in deforestation and wildfires raging in the Amazon state of Pará to determine whether there has been reduced monitoring and enforcement of environmental protections.
LONDON, ENGLAND – AUGUST 23: Extinction Rebellion supporters protest outside the Brazilian Embassy on August 23, 2019 in London, England. Extinction Rebellion call a protest outside the Brazilian Embassy in London over the fires raging in the Amazon Rainforest. (Photo by Guy Smallman/Getty Images)The Bishops Conference for Latin America expressed concern about the “tragedy,” and on Thursday called on countries to take immediate action to protect the rainforest and nearby communities.
“We urge the governments of the Amazon countries, especially Brazil and Bolivia, the United Nations and the international community to take serious measures to save the world’s lungs,” it said.
The largest rainforest in the world, scientists describe the Amazon as a vital carbon store that slows down the pace of global warming.