BOLIVIA – Bolivian authorities warned this week that 70% of the department of Santa Cruz — where more than a quarter of the country’s population lives — is under “extreme risk” from forest fires.
According to the government, nearly 500,000 hectares of forest have now been turned into ashes.
President Evo Morales announced on Wednesday that a new environmental emergency cabinet had been created to tackle the blazes in the Chiquitania area which borders with Brazil and Paraguay
Evo Morales Ayma
Aprobamos la conformación de un Gabinete de Emergencia Ambiental para hacer frente a los incendios en la Chiquitania y el oriente. Además, he instruido la contratación de un Boeing 747 Supertanker para reforzar tareas de mitigación y apagado de incendios. #UnidosEnLaAdversidad
The three Latin American countries have been battling raging wildfires in the Amazon rainforest.
According to Brazil’s space research centre (INPE), 72,843 fires have hit the country’s side of the Amazon — an 83% increase on last year and the highest number registered since records began in 2013. The smokes from the wildfires on Wednesday caused an hour-long blackout in Sao Paulo, located 2,700 kms away.