Castelo dos Sonhos, Brazil
An illegal wildcat gold mine, located on an area of deforested Amazon rainforest, is seen near Castelo...
An illegal wildcat gold mine, located on an area of deforested Amazon rainforest, is seen near the city of Castelo dos Sonhos, Para State June 22, 2013. The Amazon rainforest is being eaten away at by deforestation, much of which takes place as areas are burnt by large fires to clear land for agriculture. Initial data from Brazil's space agency suggests that destruction of the vast rainforest - the largest in the world - spiked by more than a third over the past year, wiping out an area more than twice the size of the city of Los Angeles. If the figures are borne out by follow-up data, they would confirm fears of scientists and environmental activists who warn that farming, mining and Amazon infrastructure projects, coupled with changes to Brazil's long-standing environmental policies, are reversing progress made against deforestation. Environmental issues will be under the spotlight as a United Nations Climate Change Conference opens in Warsaw, Poland on November 11. Picture taken on June 22, 2013. REUTERS/Nacho Doce (BRAZIL - Tags: ENVIRONMENT POLITICS SOCIETY AGRICULTURE)
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