Brasília, Brazil. 3 October 2007. Nine non-governmental
organisations, including Greenpeace, (1) today launched a proposal
for a national agreement to end Amazon deforestation (2) at an
event attended by the Brazilian Minister of Environment and State
Governors. The proposal aims to achieve a broad commitment from
sectors of the Brazilian government and civil society for measures
to ensure urgent protection for the Amazon rainforest.
"As we launch this initiative, the forests in the Amazon are
being slashed and burned. This has to end. We show that it can end
if political will, financing and conservation efforts work in a
co-ordinated manner," said Greenpeace Amazon Campaign Co-ordinator
"Protecting the world's remaining forests will significantly
reduce climate change, maintain the livelihood of millions of
people who depend on the forest and protect a huge amount of the
world's biodiversity," he said.
The proposal, entitled the 'Agreement on Acknowledging the Value
of the Forest and Ending Amazon Deforestation' shows that adopting
a system of reduction targets (3) could end deforestation in the
Amazon by 2015.
Minister of Environment Marina Silva and State Governors Eduardo
Braga (Amazonas), Blairo Maggi (Mato Groso), Waldez Góes (Amapá),
as well as other authorities, attended the launch event.
The proposal combines strong public policies with market
strategies to promote reductions in Amazon deforestation and to
finance the maintenance of existing forests and the 'environmental
services' they provide. Estimates are that this would call for an
investment of around R$ 1 billion per year (roughly Euro 390
million) from national and international sources.
NGOs believe that economic incentives should be directed at
strengthening forest governance including monitoring, control and
inspection, promotion of environmental licensing for rural
properties, and the creation and implementation of protected areas
and indigenous lands. Incentives are also needed to optimise
agricultural use in areas which have already been deforested.
Indigenous peoples, local communities, traditional populations and
rural producers would be among those benefiting from financial
compensation for forest conservation.
According to the NGOs, one of the main challenges is to
guarantee public policies which incorporate the elimination of
deforestation within a social, environmental and economic
framework. It is necessary to go beyond 'command and control'
measures by promoting the revision and re-orientation of financial
incentives which historically have been channeled into destructive
By 2006, approximately 17 per cent of the Amazon rainforest had
been destroyed, equivalent to an area larger than France. High
rates of deforestation are leading to an accelerated loss of
biodiversity which is having a direct impact on the way of life of
millions of forest-dependent people. Deforestation, which is
predominantly occurring in the tropics, accounts for about
one-fifth of global greenhouse gas emissions. Up to 75 per cent of
Brazilian greenhouse gas emissions come from land conversion and
deforestation mainly in the Amazon, which makes Brazil the fourth
largest climate polluter in the world (4).
Destroying the Amazon forest could trigger prolonged droughts in
a number of regions of Brazil and reduce the country's agricultural
productivity, leading to serious economic and social impacts.
The NGOs involved in developing the agreement see the launch of
their initiative as the beginning of a national debate focusing on
consistent, long-term solutions to ending deforestation in the
Success, however, depends on this national initiative being
coupled with international action. Greenpeace is calling for
deforestation to be included in the post-2012 Kyoto climate regime
which will be discussed at a conference in Bali, Indonesia, in
December. This would be a critical step in providing the financing
and capacity needed for governments of forest countries to
participate seriously in global efforts to reduce greenhouse gas
Stabilising the world's climate depends on countries making deep
cuts in their energy-related emissions and completely halting
VVPR info: Greenpeace Brazil Paulo Adario, Amazon Campaign Co-ordinator: +55 92 8115-8928Tica Minami, Amazon Campaign media officer: +55 92 8114-4517Greenpeace International Roman Paul Czebiniak, Political Advisor on Climate Change & Forests: +31 6 4616 2009For video of recent deforestation and forest fires in the Brazilian Amazon: Footage preview at:http://www.greenpeace.org/international/press/video-previewsFor broadcast quality MPEG2 versions of these clips, please contact or +31 6 5350 4721 in Amsterdam (GMT +1)For photos of recent deforestation and forest fires in the Brazilian Amazon, please call Laura Lombardi on +31 6 29 00 11 62
Notes: (1) Instituto Socioambiental (www.socioambiental.org), Greenpeace Brazil (www.greenpeace.org.br), Instituto Centro de Vida (www.icv.org.br), Instituto de Pesquisa Ambiental da Amazônia (www.ipam.org.br), The Nature Conservancy (www.tnc.org.br), Conservation International-Brazil (www.conservation.org.br), Amigos da Terra-Amazônia Brasileira (www.amazonia.org.br), Imazon (www.imazon.org.br), and WWF Brasil (www.wwf.org.br).(2) The proposal, Agreement on Acknowledging the Value of the Forest and Ending Amazon Deforestation. Available via the website of Greenpeace Brazil: www.greenpeace.org/brasil/amazonia/ - English translation available at http://www.greenpeace.org/international/press/reports/amazon-deforestation-agreement(3) 7-Year Target Proposals Deforestation (ha) Reduced Deforest. Deforest. 05/06 1,400,000 1st year 1,050,000 350,000 2nd year 787,500 612,500 3rd year 551,250 848,750 4th year 330,750 1,069,250 5th year 165,375 1,234,6256th year 41,345 1,358,6557th year 1,400,000 Total 3,585,902 6,873,780(4) Ministry of Science and Technology, Brazilian First Inventory on Greenhouse Gases Emissions, 2004.
Exp. contact date: 2007-10-10 00:00:00