- Title: With no fire brigade, Amazon's Myky tribe forced to put out flames
- Date: 30th August 2019
- Summary: MATO GROSSO, BRAZIL (AUGUST 29, 2019) (REUTERS) MEMBERS OF MYKI TRIBE WALKING IN AREA OF AMAZON STILL SMOKING FROM FIRES VARIOUS OF FIRE BURNING, TRIBE MEMBER PUTTING OUT FLAMES FIRE BURNING TRIBE MEMBER WORKING TO PUT OUT FIRES FIRE BURNING / TRIBE MEMBER WORKING TO PUT OUT FIRES TRIBE MEMBER WALKING IN AREA AFFECTED BY FIRES (SOUNDBITE) (Myky) MYKY TRIBE MEMBER WHO IS A PART OF INFORMAL FIREFIGHTING FORCE, TYPYU MYKY, SAYING: "A long time ago there was a fire brigade and a while ago it stopped. Many people here have many problems because of the fires. Nearby plantations catch fire, plantations are not looked after and it burns the forest. The result is devastation." LOCAL VILLAGE WHERE MYKY TRIBE MEMBERS LIVE VARIOUS OF MEMBERS OF TRIBE WALKING IN JUNGLE AREA TRIBE MEMBER PUTTING OUT FIRE VARIOUS OF FIRE BURNING IN SHRUBBERY MEMBER OF TRIBE IN FIRE-AFFECTED AREA SMOKE RISING FROM FIRE (SOUNDBITE) (Myky) MYKY TRIBE MEMBER WHO IS A PART OF INFORMAL FIREFIGHTING FORCE, MINA MYKY, SAYING: "For me, the forest, the vegetation and the animals are very important for me. Those plants provide us with life, so it's very important for us to bring in materials (to combat fires). If we just leave the fires be then it'll end us." VARIOUS OF MEMBER OF TRIBE'S FIREFIGHTERS FILLING CONTAINER WITH WATER FROM STREAM FIREFIGHTER FROM TRIBE CLIMBING UP FROM STREAM TRIBE MEMBERS GOING THROUGH SHRUBBERY TO PUT OUT SMOKE AND FIRE FIRE BURNING (SOUNDBITE) (Myky) MYKY TRIBE MEMBER WHO IS A PART OF INFORMAL FIREFIGHTING FORCE, TYPYU MYKY, SAYING: "We don't have firefighting equipment to work with. I'm wearing heavy casual clothes that won't catch fire but there's a lot of things missing, like water, a pump. We're missing that type of equipment." VARIOUS OF TRIBE MEMBER CLEARING SHRUBBERY SMOKE RISING FROM AMAZON
- Embargoed: 13th September 2019 01:48
- Keywords: Myky tribe indigenous Amazon fire wildfires firefighters environment
- Location: MATO GROSSO, BRAZIL
- City: MATO GROSSO, BRAZIL
- Country: Brazil
- Topics: Disaster/Accidents,Wildfires/Forest Fires,Editors' Choice
- Reuters ID: LVA001AU9W3T3
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:Left to fend for themselves, members of the Myky tribe patrol their sacred land in the Amazon to put out wildfires after the area's fire brigade service was cut.
Carrying a water container fashioned into a backpack and a humble water pump, tribal youths go out in small groups as a preventative force. They don't have the means to tackle large wildfires but look to douse flames before they can spread.
A Reuters report released earlier this month found that Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro's government had weakened the federal agency charged with protecting the rain forest through budget cuts, leaving many indigenous tribes on the front lines of wildfires.
The Myky have lived in this area of the Amazon for generations. Only about 400 Myky remain. But their culture has survived Portuguese colonisation, diseases brought over from Europe and even threats and massacres from encroaching ranchers. But they are now facing arguably their biggest threat yet, a record number of fires.
The Amazon is central to the Myky culture. Tribal members told Reuters the Myky have no word for "live" in their native tongue. Instead, they use the word "coexist" to emphasise the unique role the environment plays in holding onto the spirits of ancestors.
Fighting for survival, the Myky fear it is an uphill battle against wildfires as they are forced to improvise with limited equipment.
Through July, destruction of Brazil's rainforest is up 67% compared to the same period a year ago, according to preliminary data released by the country's National Institute for Space Research (INPE).
Nearly 80,000 fires have been recorded this year through Aug. 24, the highest level since at least 2013, INPE says.
(Production: Herbert Villarraga, Paul Vieira)
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