The Pantanal recorded the lowest number of fires recorded in August since the beginning of monitoring by Inpe (National Institute for Space Research), in 1998. Despite the reduction in fire outbreaks, the biome continues to experience an intense dry period.
In the entire month of August this year, 96 hotspots were recorded in the biome that, in 2020, suffered from flames that consumed more than 20% of its territory. In August of that year, 5,935 fires took over the Pantanal.
Previously, the August with the lowest number of fires had occurred in 2014, with 134 hotspots in the biome.
In 2021, despite the considerably better situation, 1,505 fires were recorded in August, a value very close to the historical average in the biome.
The fire present in the Pantanal may be relatively small at the moment, however, the biome has been considerably dry for some years now. Rainfall levels have generally been lower than expected since the second half of 2019.
In 2022, the situation of the rainy season, in the first semester, did not improve the situation. So, we have, so far, another dry year, according to Olivio Bahia, meteorologist at Inmet (National Institute of Meteorology).
The hot and dry periods create a complicated hydrological situation and, even when the rain comes, it is not enough. “This amount of water that falls does not fill the ‘water tank'”, says Bahia.
The situation of constant drought in the largest floodplain in the world has been materialized in images of alligators accumulated in puddles and in search of water.