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Bruno Pacheco – From Cenarium Magazine

MANAUS – The Legal Amazon recorded an increase in greenhouse gas emissions in 2019. According to the study ‘Fatos da Amazônia 2021’ (Facts of the Amazon 2021 in English), the nine states in the region emitted 1,137.13 megatons of CO2e in 2019 alone. Therefore, more than one billion tons of pollutants. The number corresponds to an increase of 99.8% compared with 2010 when 656.1 megatons CO2e were recorded.

According to the doctor in climate and environment, professor and researcher Rogério Marinho, greenhouse gases can be counted as a unit of weight measurement, such as the megaton. Thus, according to Marinho, a megaton measure means one million tons.

“A megaton is a unit of measure widely used by scientists to quantify one million tons. For example, the value of 656 megatons corresponds to the millions of tons of CO2 equivalent and CO2 is carbon dioxide, one of the main gases of global warming, the greenhouse effect”, he said.

The research, published last Monday, 12, takes into account gross gas emissions in land-use change. According to the study, the State of Pará was the largest emitter in 2019, followed by Mato Grosso and Amazonas.

“The data were collected directly from the System for Estimating Emissions and Removal of Greenhouse Gases (Seeg Brasil), an initiative of the Climate Observatory. Subsequently, the data were analyzed and verified by us of the team responsible for the publication”, said Daniel Santos, responsible for the research and consultant at the Center for Entrepreneurship in the Amazon.

Daniel told Cenarium Magazine that the increase in greenhouse gas emissions was influenced mainly by the change in land use. “This sector is mainly composed of deforestation and forest fires in the region,” he said.

Danger

In the assessment of consultant Daniel Santos, growth represents a risk to the economic activities of cities amid high temperatures. “The climate changes caused by this increase in emissions can alter the rainfall regime, causing great risk for economic activities such as agriculture and the agroforestry system, worsening the quality of life in Amazonian cities with the increase in temperatures and greater environmental impact under the forests,” he stressed.

Researcher Rogério Marinho commented on the risk that this increase in gas emissions leads to the environment. “The greater emission of these gases into the atmosphere, greater the greenhouse effect. And this causes a trend of warming the atmosphere that leads to global warming”, he stressed.

The growth registered in the States of Pará, Mato Grosso, and Amazonas, according to Marinho, is related to the dynamics of land use in the region, that is, the changes from areas with forest cover to another means of use, such as livestock, areas with reforestation and gold mining fronts over the forest, for example.

“With all this deforestation the forest starts to decompose and ends up emitting greenhouse gases. These three states were the ones that most deforested. Rondônia was left behind due to the low stock of remaining forest area, but also related to the expansion front of the deforestation arc advancing in the South of the State of Amazonas”, he pointed out.

Desmatamento e queimada

The survey also shows that 76% of the total greenhouse gas emissions of 2019 were related to the change in land use, mainly to deforestation and fires in the region. Despite the increase, the study states that, with GHG removal, 455.08 megatons of CO2e were removed from the Amazon for the same year.

According to the research, the year with the lowest emission of greenhouse gases was 2010, when the historical series began. That year, 656.1 megatons of CO2e were emitted, reaching almost double in 2019.

“The best way to account for these impacts of deforestation is the relationship with the carbon that is stored in the forest’s biomass, which is deforested and starts to decompose through burning and other decomposition processes,” explained Marinho.

According to the expert, when carbon reaches the atmosphere, interacts with the sun’s rays, and ends up absorbing more pollutants. “This absorption increases the temperature of the atmosphere, which, in turn, influences the surface temperature, causing this whole chain of events that we know as global warming,” he concluded.

Fatos da Amazônia 2021 (Facts of the Amazon 2021)

The ‘Fatos da Amazônia 2021′ (Facts of the Amazon 2021 in English)’ does part of the initiative of Brazilian researchers to develop an action plan for the Brazilian Amazon. The study aims to bring conditions to the region for greater economic and human development, besides achieving the sustainable use of natural resources in 2030.

One of the research contributions shows the division of the Amazon based on the total deforestation of the region, ensuring analysis of the borders that suffer most from pressure. According to the survey, in 2019, there were about 229 municipalities on the deforested border, 68 under pressure, and 118 on the forest border.