Stop the Brazilian Assault on the Amazon Rainforest

Feature story - November 19, 2008
The Brazilian Congress, influenced by the agribusiness sector, seeks to change the Forest Code in Brazil to open more of the Amazon rainforest to be cleared. Not only will this destroy forested areas in the Amazon no longer protected by the Forest Code, but the clearing and burning of these lands will release millions of tons of greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere—making the impacts of climate change much worse.

The proposals to weaken the Forest Code include:

  • A 250% increase in the percentage of land a farmer is allowed to clearcut (from 20% to 50%)
  • Allowances for farmers to replant exotic tree species such as palm trees and eucalyptus in Legal Reserves that are intended to be native rainforest

The region has already lost almost 18% of the forest cover-an area larger than France-in the last 40 years.  In theory, the change being discussed by the Brazilian Congress would immediately apply to 36% of the Amazon in the hands of the private sector.  

If these changes to the Forest Code pass, they will stimulate deforestation, increased greenhouse gas emissions, land grabbing, and disputes over land rights in the Amazon.  The Forest Code would legally allow for millions of acres of the Amazon to be deforested and then burned to further clear the land for grazing cattle or planting soy.  

All this could happen under the protection of the law if we don't stop it.  Please send the message below to the Brazilian Congress today.  It's important they recognize that the world depends on the Amazon for our survival, and the world is watching Brazil.  

Please take a moment to sign the petition below that is being signed by people all around the world.

Take Action

The world is speaking out to Brazil on behalf of the Amazon Rainforest. Will you add your voice, too?