Manaus, Brazil – October 17th, 2008
Manaus is the largest city in the Brazilian Amazon and capital of the State of Amazonas. Located on the Rio Negro near its confluence with the Amazon River, it is the chief port and a hub for the region’s extensive river system. Manaus is an important area for ecological tourism as well as an important industrial center for electronics manufacturing.
Amazonas is a state of Brazil, located in the northern part of the country. Neighboring states are (from north clockwise) Roraima, Pará, Mato Grosso, Rondônia, and Acre. It also borders Peru, Colombia and Venezuela. This includes the department Amazonas in Colombia, as well as the Amazonas State, Venezuela (it does not border the Peruvian Amazonas Region). This is the largest Brazilian State in area, with 1.5 million square kilometers.
In the close-up of Manaus, we can see the city’s location on the banks of the Rio Negro (Black River, so named due to the dark color of the water). We can also see the convergence of the Rio Negro, the dark river on the left, and the Amazon River (also called Rio Solimões), the brown river running across the image.
In the second close-up, we can have a detailed look at some deforestation north of Manaus. Deforestation results from removal of trees without sufficient reforestation (the replanting of trees), and results in declines in biodiversity.
Thanks to the sun glint in the final close-up, we can clearly see the outline of Lake Balbina, located 125km (77mi) north of Manaus. It was created by the Balbina Dam (Usina Hidrelétrica de Balbina), a hydroelectric dam and power plant on the Uatumã River. The dam generates an average of 112.2 megawatts of electricity from the river system and floods a total of 2360 square kilometers of rainforest. The dam was established to provide a renewable electricity supply to the city of Manaus but was considered by locals a controversial project from the start, due to the loss of forest and displacement of tribal homes grounds such as the Amerindian tribe.