Deforestation alerts drop 66% in August in the Amazon

setembro, 06 2023

On Amazon Day, the government celebrates a significant reduction in the destruction of the biome in August and announces the demarcation of two new Indigenous Lands and a plan to combat deforestation in municipalities
By WWF-Brazil

In August, deforestation alerts fell again in the Amazon, with a reduction of more than 66% compared to August last year, according to the Deter System, from Inpe (National Institute for Space Research). The data were released this Tuesday, September 5, Amazon Day, at an event held in Brasília by the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change.

According to Deter, in August 2023, 563 km² were deforested in the Amazon, a 66% drop in the area under alert compared to August 2022, when 1,661 km² were destroyed. In the first eight months of this year, deforestation alerts were registered in 3,712 km² in the Amazon, a reduction of 48% compared to the same period of the previous year.

During the Amazon Day Celebration, in addition to disclosing Deter data, the federal government made a series of announcements related to the conservation of the biome. The Decree for Improving the Policy of Priority Municipalities for Combating Deforestation, and the demarcation of two new Indigenous Lands were signed: Rio Gregório, in Tarauacá (Acre state), and Acapuri de Cima, in Fonte Boa (Amazonas state). The new territories are part of a set of eight demarcation processes that are ready for approval and that should be completed by the end of the year.

In Pará state, the state government also created a new full protection area - the Mamuru Ecological Station, in the municipalities of Aveiro and Juruti, with approximately 126 thousand hectares of protected areas, such as indigenous lands and national parks.

“On Amazon Day, the greatest gift is the significant drop in the area under deforestation alerts in August – an important reduction of 66%, in one of the months that historically has the highest rates of the year”, says Mariana Napolitano, director of Strategy at WWF-Brazil.

According to her, the reduction in deforestation produced a scenario of fires under control, even in the most critical months. “It is a clear sign that the government's actions have been effective, especially the resumption of actions to combat deforestation and other actions against crimes such as: land grabbing, invasion of public lands and illegal mining”, says Napolitano.

In addition to command and control actions, other government initiatives that contribute to the drop in deforestation in the Amazon are the Action Plan for the Prevention and Control of Deforestation in the Legal Amazon (PPCDAm) and the Ecological Transition Plan, prioritising strengthening of a forest-based economy and fairer and more inclusive development.

Edegar de Oliveira, director of Conservation and Restoration at WWF-Brazil, celebrates recent actions, but points to a still challenging scenario. “We see with hope the reduction of deforestation in the Amazon and the resumption of actions in the fight against illegality, but much still needs to be done. The reality of the Amazon today is worse than in the past decade, as crimes have gained strength in recent years. Illegal mining, species and drug trafficking are allied to deforestation, wildfires and land grabbing. Much more than before, civil society and governments need to ally themselves to ensure that there is a future for the Amazon and consequently for us, who depend on its environmental services”.


In the Cerrado, deforestation rates remain high, but the data points to a slowdown compared to the same period last year. According to Deter, there was an increase of 2.43% in the area under alerts in August compared to the same month of 2022, and 19.83% from January to August compared to the first eight months of the previous year.
The critical situation makes clear the need and urgency of a plan and specific measures for the biome, as it already exists for the Amazon, to combat deforestation in the Cerrado. The Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change promised to launch PPCerrado in October this year.
Vista aérea de floresta inundada durante a estação chuvosa entre o Rio Amazonas e o Rio Negro, no Amazonas.
According to Deter, in August 2023, 563 km² were deforested in the Amazon, a 66% drop in the area under alert compared to August 2022, when 1,661 km² were destroyed
© © Michel Roggo / WWF