Brazil's portion of the Amazon rainforest lost 464.96 sq. kilometers (180 sq. miles) of cover in May, or 4.7 times the amount deforested in the same month of 2012 (98.85 sq. kilometers), officials said.

The most affected area was Mato Grosso state, a booming agricultural region in the southern Amazon where 276.92 sq. kilometers of rainforest was destroyed, according to satellite data unveiled Friday by the National Institute for Space Research, or Inpe.

The Inpe data is not complete because 42 percent of the rainforest was covered by clouds during the observation period, up from 32 percent a year ago.

A total of 2,337.79 sq. kilometers of the Brazilian Amazon were lost in the first 10 months of the current pluviometric year, which began last August, an increase of 35 percent from the August 2011 to May 2012 period. EFE