A severe drought in the Amazon basin is worsening, prompting Brazilian authorities to widen the State of Emergency. Brazils Military has been stepping
up efforts to deliver relief supplies to thousands that have been trapped or isolated due to the severe drop in water levels.
A worsening drought in the Amazon basin has prompted Brazil to extend an emergency across the Amazonas state.
Brazil's military has been distributing supplies and medicine to tens of thousands of people stranded by the dramatic drop in water levels.
Witnesses say rivers and lakes have dried up completely, leaving behind kilometres of sand and mud.
Environmental campaign group Greenpeace has blamed deforestation and global warming for the drought.
It quoted scientists as saying that the burning of forests has raised temperatures in the Amazon, preventing the formation of clouds.
Brazilian government meteorologists, however, have said the drought is the result of unusually high temperatures in the Atlantic Ocean, that have also
been linked to this year's devastating hurricanes.
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Some of the pictures and information about this drought are shocking. Many environmentalists have blamed global warming and deforestation for the
drought, wheras the official line is warmer ocean temperatures in the Atlantic, thought to be responsible for the increase in dangerous Hurricanes
Tens of thousands of people are trapped, as the river was their only means of transportation, ships are left on sand banks in the many large ports
along the basin and millions of fish are rotting in the sun amongst the mud. This is truly a major environmental disaster in the making.
We can only pray for rain in that part of the world and hope that the damage is limited. If this happens over the course of several years, we could be
looking at the loss of the worlds largest rainforest and the implications of that are too grim to contemplate.