June 23, 2024 9:01 pm
The world’s largest wetlands are currently burning.

Fisherman Amilton Brandao is on a mission to save the cattle of farmer Cleiton Jose from the deadly wildfires ravaging Brazil’s Mato Grosso do Sul state. The Pantanal wetlands, once a lush and vibrant ecosystem, have been transformed into a barren wasteland, with fires engulfing everything in their path. Brandao describes the area as a desert, where the only sound is the crackling of burning trees and grass.

The ranch where Jose’s cattle are trapped can only be accessed by boat, but they need to be moved to higher ground to escape the flames. With no other option, Jose and Brandao set out on horseback to transport the cattle across the treacherous wetlands. The journey is long and arduous, but they must complete it before it’s too late for the animals.

Satellite data from Brazil’s National Institute for Space Research reveals that there has been a 980% increase in fires in the Pantanal compared to the same period last year. The region is now at peak wildfire season, with no end in sight unless urgent action is taken. The destruction of such a unique and diverse ecosystem is a tragedy that affects not only the environment but also those who depend on it for their livelihoods.

Brandao speaks passionately about the importance of preserving this precious ecosystem, which he describes as a great loss of life and beauty. He points to Rio Grande do Sul, which has faced devastating flooding in recent years, as evidence of how fragile our natural resources are. The destruction of the Pantanal wetlands is not just an environmental disaster – it’s also an economic one that could have far-reaching consequences for generations to come.

As Brandao continues his work with Jose to move their cattle safely away from danger, he remains hopeful that people will come together to protect this precious ecosystem before it’s too late.

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