Researchers from Stanford University and Florida University found strong evidence that deforestation increases malaria transmission, while high malaria incidence simultaneously reduces forest clearing. To reach that conclusion, they analysed a geospatial dataset encompassing 795 municipalities across the Amazon basin between 2003 and 2015.

A 10% increase in deforestation results in a 3.3% increase in the number of malaria cases, according to the study published by PNAS. Scientists also found that a 1% increase in malaria incidence leads to a 1.4% decrease in forest area cleared. This result probably reflects the negative effect of malaria on people's ability to perform activities such as cutting trees, say the researchers.

More information is available at PNAS and News18.