Weekly Report - 01 February 2024 (WR-24-04)

Andean deforestation in the spotlight

Colombia’s President Gustavo Petro declared a natural disaster this week, and appealed for international aid as forest fires ravage the country. More than 17,000 hectares of forest have been destroyed since November last year, with some 20 blazes still active, including one near Bogotá which some 600 firefighters have been battling. The Petro administration expressed its gratitude in particular to Peru for its assistance in combating the fires, which it attributed to the weather phenomenon El Niño and climate change. But Peru’s helping hand is being extended at a time when congress is being accused of heightening the risk of the outbreak of devastating fires in the country by approving an amendment to a forestry and wildlife law, which contravenes environmental commitments.

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