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By Lise Alves, Senior Contributing Reporter

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Deforestation in the Amazon increased by 13.7 percent between August 2017 and July of 2018, the highest increase in deforestation in nine years, according to the Ministry of Environment (MMA) and the Ministry of Science and Technology (MCTIC).

The total deforested area reached 7,900 square kilometers, and has raised an alert among environmentalist groups.

"The increase in deforestation in the Amazon reduces the competitiveness of Brazilian products in the global market, that seeks products free of deforestation," said Mauricio Voivodic, executive director of WWF- Brazil.

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