Amazon rainforest struggling after record wildfires

The fires, which have increased by 83% since 2018, have caused massive devastation and sparked concerns that the blazes could accelerate climate change.
1:16 | 08/22/19

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Transcript for Amazon rainforest struggling after record wildfires
We turn next tonight to the fires raging in the Amazon rain forest. Scientists warn, at a record pace, and this could be dire, they say, when it comes to climate change. And tonight, Brazil's president and who he's blaming. Here's ABC foreign correspondent James Longman. Reporter: Tonight, the Amazon rainforest, often called the planet's lungs, is struggling to breathe. Record fires causing massive devastation, nearly 73,000 detected by researchers so far this year. An 83% increase from 2018. The fires, visible even from space. Those white patches not clouds, but smoke. Powerful winds carrying it nearly 1,700 miles away to Sao paolo. These images from Monday afternoon. Drivers forced to use their headlights in the darkness. The major concern, how the wildfires could accelerate climate change. The Amazon rainforest produces 20% of the oxygen in the Earth's atmosphere. A vital defense against global warming. Tonight, Brazil's president without evidence suggesting environmental groups may have had a role in the fires as a ploy for money. And David, the president's critics say he's harmed the rain forest since he took office, selling it off to farmers, loggers and miners. David? James, thank you. When we come back here

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