Record flood of Rio Negro, the largest Amazon tributary

record-flood-of-rio-negro-the-largest-amazon-tributary

The largest Amazon River tributary, Rio Negro has marked its highest historical level following weeks of heavy rain. The Rio Negro crested last Wednesday, registering 97.70 feet (29.78 meters) in Manaus. The top narrowly eclipsed the high mark of 97.67, set in 2009. The worst hit is city of Manaus, Brazil, with population of 1.6 million people. Manaus has been hit by the worst flooding in 100 years, crippling the local economy and displacing thousands of families in the country’s northwestern region. Some neighborhoods have been partially submerged and homes have been invaded by water.

Manaus is located in Amazonas state, where 83 percent of the counties are in a state of emergency because of flooding. Brazil’s federal government has announced a $5.5-million-dollar aid package to help the worst-hit areas, but the resources are not expected to be available until the end of June. State officials said they have spent over $450 million dollars to help displaced families. The rains are continuing and officials warn the river could rise even higher.

Meanwhile, in Brazil’s northeast, families have been have been suffering from an extended drought caused by La Nina, which cools down Pacific waters.

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