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Deforestation reduced by 18 pct. in Brazilian Amazon, gov’t says

Brasilia, Nov 27 (EFE).- Deforestation in the official Amazon region, made up of the nine Brazilian states in the Amazon River basin, was reduced by 18 percent over a 12-month period, officials said.

The Brazilian Amazon lost 4,848 sq. kilometers (1,871 sq. miles) of forest cover between August 2013 and July 2014, compared to the 5,891 sq. kilometers (2,274 sq. miles) cleared during the same earlier period.

Deforestation grew 29 percent last year, compared to 2012, when the government registered 4,571 sq. kilometers (1,765 sq. miles) cut.

The estimate of the area cleared was based on the Amazon Observation Project, or Prodes, methodology, which identifies forest areas of less than 6.25 hectares (15.4 acres) that have been completely cleared or burned.

The deforestation estimate was produced by the National Institute for Space Research, or Inpe, using 89 images from the U.S. Landsat 8 satellite.