In Brazil, the deforestation of the Amazon, the result of Jair Bolsonaro’s policy

The years go by and look the same, but for the worse. In Brazil, deforestation in the Amazon has once again reached record levels. In just one year, more than 13,000 km2 rainforest were razed, over the period from August 2020 to July 2021, according to data transmitted by the National Institute for Space Research (INPE). The equivalent of the area of ​​a country like Lebanon; more than 120 times that of a city like Paris

Brazil has not experienced such levels of destruction for fifteen long years. The number of square kilometers of tropical forest destroyed each year has practically doubled there compared to 2018. And the trend is accelerating: according to the INPE, in just one year, deforestation has increased by nearly 22%.

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At the heart of the accusations, we find again and again Jair Bolsonaro. Coming to power in 2019, the President of Brazil distinguished himself by dismantling the institutions responsible for environmental protection. “The INPE figures are unfortunately not surprising. This president is doing exactly what he promised during his campaign. He applies his program “, deplores Antonio Oviedo, researcher at the Socioambiental Institute (ISA).

These figures nevertheless represent a severe snub. Isolated since Donald Trump left power, the government of Brasilia is now subject to intense and combined pressure from the United States and the European Union (EU) to reduce the destruction of the Amazon. Jair Bolsonaro, realizing that the winds had changed, promised to give pledges.

Change of tone

On the government side, no more cookie-cutter speeches about the end of native reserves and the rampant exploitation of the forest. “To those who persist in committing these environmental crimes, [nous avertissons] that the Brazilian state will show its full strength in the Amazon ”Justice and Public Safety Minister Anderson Torres said Thursday in a noticeable change.

“Brazil signs agreements to reassure its partners. But at home, he continues his anti-environment policy ”
Cristiane Mazzetti, spokesperson for the NGO Greenpeace in Brazil

Officially, the government is in the fight. Three times since the start of the mandate, the armed forces have been mobilized to put out the fires. In June, a new Minister of the Environment was appointed; instead of the very controversial Ricardo Salles, we now find the most diplomatic Joaquim Leite, former secretary for the Amazon and environmental services within the ministry.

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