The president-elect of Brazil announced during his campaign the merger of the Ministries of Agriculture and Environment
Politicians like Trump are apparently emerging in South America and a true reflection of this is Brazil. Due to the constant corruption scandals caused by the last left governments, such as the imprisoned Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva and the ousted Silva Rousseff, the far-right Jair Bolsonaro came to power.
Leer en español: La Amazonía tiembla con Bolsonaro
Although the Brazilians were looking for a change in the system, a silent victim emerged, and it would pay the consequences: the Amazon. For the world it is not a secret that Bolsonaro promotes controversial proposals such as:
- Finish the participation of Brazil in the 2015 Paris Environmental Agreement
- To merge the Ministries of Agriculture and Environment
- Not giving more land to the indigenous community of the Amazon
All the above ignited the alarms of the ecologists, who see with danger the elected president and his policies. "Let's be clear: the future minister will come from the productive sector, we will not fight for this anymore," said Bolsonaro at the time of the electoral race.
However, to lower the controversy a bit, the president-elect came up against the criticism by stating that if Brazilian sovereignty is guaranteed, his nation would remain in the pact against climate change.
The decision would not be easy for the president of Brazil, since the Amazon is not only located in his country; neighbors such as Colombia, Peru, and Venezuela would suffer a negative impact in case of increasing deforestation and the upsurge of industries. These two areas are not very clear in Bolsonaro's government program, but they point to growth at all costs.
Furthermore, it would be more expensive to leave the Paris Agreement than to continue there. The exit would cause the loss of some international certifications useful for export and would lead to global disappointment at the palpable climate change that is affecting the planet.
"Triple A is at stake: a strip that covers the Amazon and goes to Atlantic and that would no longer be under our jurisdiction, but under that of another country, because it is considered as an essence for the survival of humanity (...) In That Paris Agreement, could we risk giving up our Amazon?", were some of Bolsonaro's statements, published in the newspaper El País of Spain.
Undoubtedly, this will be an issue for the nations that make up the Paris Agreement. However, we have to consider the tone that the ex-Army Captain had every time he was in front of a microphone. His declarations are racist, homophobic, and violent; moreover, we cannot forget the admiration Bolsonaro has for the American president Donald Trump and his idea of wanting "a big Brazil", at all costs.
According to a study carried out by scientists from European and US universities, and published by the newspaper La Vanguardia, "if all Bolsonaro’s program measures are implemented in the area of the environment, deforestation in the Amazon would reach 25 thousand 600 square kilometers of trees destroyed per year". It is worth noting that during the last two governments the destruction of the Amazon was slowed by 83 percent, from 27,700 square kilometers annihilated in 2005 to 4,500 in 2012.
LatinAmerican Post | Jorge Hernández
Translated from “La Amazonía tiembla con Bolsonaro”
* The opinion of the editor does not represent this newspaper
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