In a year that has been marked by devastating flooding, scarce rain in other parts of the country have caused fires to ignite more easily, including one that has devastated the Rola Moca nature reserve in the southeastern Brazilian state of Minas Gerais.
Firefighters say that the blaze, which began at the end of September, is the worst in the 17-year history of the 4,000 hectare sanctuary. Ninety percent of the reserve has been consumed, with animals such as rabbits, monkeys and endangered jaguars and wolves having fled.
The fire also forced humans to evacuate as it approached residential areas in the Minas Gerais capital, Belo Horizonte. In addition, large areas of Brasilia National Park were destroyed by wildfires that also began in September, while the nation's capital, Brasilia, endured 107 days of consecutive drought.
We are saddened to learn about the devastation caused by the extreme dry conditions in Brazil. Our prayers for a restoration of balance as humanity returns to harmonious, eco-protecting lifestyles. Speaking during a May 2009 videoconference in Togo, Supreme Master Ching Hai addressed the destructive effects of climate change, while emphasizing the immediate actions needed to safeguard the planet.
Sources: Fox News, Youtube link 1, Youtube link 2, Journal Floripa