Flooding & Deforestation, Brazil. Left: June 24, 1984. Right: August 6, 2011. The Samuel Dam is located along the Jamari River in Rondonia, Brazil. These images show the area in 1984, shortly after construction of the hydroelectric dam began, and in 2011. The reservoir created by the dam flooded the upstream forest and displaced many people. Also evident in the images is the deforestation that has affected much of the region.
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The Amazon rainforest in Brazil has already lost over 232,000 square miles since 1970, and if deforestation continues at its current rate, 40% will be gone by 2030. The government allowed cattle ranchers to clear large areas of forest in an attempt to build up Brazil’s economy, and since the 1980s, loggers, miners and soy farmers have added to the problem.