In Brief

Not just the Amazon: where the world’s forgotten fires are burning

Major fires in Bolivia and central Africa have not attracted same attention as Brazil’s blaze

With the world’s focus on the fires in the Amazon, thousands of blazes in other countries are being forgotten.

“Fires do not stop at borders,” says the BBC, pointing out that Nasa’s map of fires currently burning around the world “clearly shows more fires burning in central Africa”.

Indeed, according to data obtained from Weather Source for Bloomberg, there were 6,902 fires in Angola and 3,395 fires in neighbouring Democratic Republic of Congo, compared with just 2,127 fires in Brazil.

Bolivia’s rainforest is also ablaze, with fires raging near its borders with Brazil and Paraguay, yet “little attention has been given to the blaze in Bolivia and its causes,” says the BBC.

The size of the Bolivian fires is believed to have doubled since Thursday. “More than 1.8 million acres have been burned,” reports CNN.

Bolivia’s President Evo Morales has accepted international help in fighting the fires. The US sent a Boeing 747 “supertanker” to drop water on the infernos and has offered further aid in the wake of the G7 summit at the weekend.

Morales said Earth “can live without us, but we can’t live without her”. His stance is in contrast to that of Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro, who angrily rejected an offer of help from the G7 yesterday.

After Emmanuel Macron announced that the leaders of the G7 - Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK and the US - would release $22m (£18m) to help fight fires in the Amazon rainforest, some questioned why the French president was not also offering support to help fight the fires burning in Africa.

Macron subsequently tweeted that: “The forest is also burning in sub-Saharan Africa.”

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