The Amazon rainforest is struggling with a severe drought, potentially endangering half a million people

Amazon rainforest / Photo: EPA-EFE / Joedson Alves

Brazil's Amazon rainforest is battling a severe drought, prompting authorities to issue a warning of potential consequences for nearly 500.000 people by the end of the year, Anadolu Agency reported.

Authorities in the state of Amazonas in the northwestern part of Brazil yesterday declared a state of emergency in 13 municipalities due to extreme drought, while another 16 are under alert.

On September 21, a critically low water level of -43 cm was reported for the Solimoes River, which flows from the Brazilian-Peruvian border westward to the Amazonian Municipality of Benjamin Constant near Manaus.

The situation has left local residents struggling to access basic supplies of food and water. In this region, waterways serve as the primary mode of transportation, but river levels have reached historic lows. In addition, the negative effects of drought are reflected in fishing activities, a vital source of livelihood for many communities along these rivers.

Amazonas Governor Wilson Lima traveled to Brasilia, the country's capital, to meet with President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva for talks on the current drought issue.

Different levels of government "will coordinate measures to support people living in the affected municipalities," Lima announced on the X platform.

To help those affected, the state's Civil Defense Agency has begun distributing basic supplies – food, water and personal hygiene kits.

The drought is expected to last longer and be more intense due to the El Niño weather phenomenon, which hinders the formation of rain clouds, the Civil Protection Agency said.

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