The Amazon rain-forests are burning: Thousands of fires are burning through the the Amazon rainforest in Brazil, making it the largest and most intense blaze in almost the last ten years.
Roraima, Acre, Rondônia, Amazonas, Mato Grosso do Sul and other States in Brazil have been particularly badly affected, reports BBC.
In the midst of this, images supposed to be of the fires, including many under the hashtag #PrayforAmazonas - have been shown to be decades old or not even in Brazil.
Hollywood actor, and environmentalist Leonardo DiCaprio also succumbed to this trick, when he shared a similar photo and raised questions over the lack of media coverage of the ongoing fire at the Amazon rainforest in an Instagram post.
"Terrifying to think that the Amazon is the largest rain forest on the planet, creating 20% of the earth’s oxygen, basically the lungs of the world, has been on fire and burning for the last 16 days running, with literally NO media coverage whatsoever! Why?" he wrote.
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#Regram #RG @IamNickRose: Terrifying to think that the Amazon is the largest rain forest on the planet, creating 20% of the earth’s oxygen, basically the lungs of the world, has been on fire and burning for the last 16 days running, with literally NO media coverage whatsoever! Why?
The picture he used, however, is one of the most common ones shared under the hashtag - but its not legitimate. The picture DiCaprio used is actually from an article called 'Carbon emissions from Amazon wildfires could ‘counteract’ deforestation decline,' and from 2018. The photo is also not unique to the 2018 article - it's a generic Stockphoto hosted by website Alamy, by photographer, Loren McIntyre.
Dicaprio wasn't the only one. Bollywood actress Alia Bhatt, also shared old images.
The 'lungs of our planet' are burning! The #AmazonRainforest is home to about 3 Mn species of plants & animals and 1 Mn indigenous people. It plays an important role in keeping the planet's carbon dioxide levels in check. We won't exist without it! #SaveTheAmazon #PrayforAmazonas https://t.co/9rKfTYXolL— Alia Bhatt (@aliaa08) August 22, 2019
The first image is from 2014 and shows a line of fire next to a grassland in the Amazon basin. The picture is from Getty Images, by photographer Mario Tama.
The next one is from a 2007 Guardian article, by Sipa Press/Rex Feature, from 1989.
But it's not just these celebrities - many are sharing these old images as they go viral under the hashtag #PrayforAmazonas as the wildfire rages on.