Brazil is going to get an US$ 1.3 billion loan from the World Bank for the First Programmatic Development Policy Loan for Sustainable Environmental Management, supporting Brazil's ongoing efforts to improve its environmental management system.
The policy also is geared to integrate sustainability in the development agenda of key sectors such as forest management, water and renewable energy. The initiative will also act as an umbrella for Brazil's climate change agenda across sectors.
"The Brazilian government has been working strongly towards the development and implementation of public policies that address sustainable development so that economic growth occurs without loss to our rich biodiversity," said Guido Mantega, Minister of Finance.
"This requires a commitment from all levels of government, whether federal, state or municipal, paying special attention to social programs, many of which include programs for sustainable growth," he added.
"In this context, the set of institutional reforms and policies laid down in the Multiyear Plan (PPA) and the Growth Acceleration Plan (PAC) is essential to ensure that Brazil achieve economic growth, preserve the environment and become a socially just nation."
In few countries is the ecosystem as crucial to development and people's welfare as in Brazil. The country has one-third of the world's tropical rain forests, the largest reservoir of fresh water (20%), one of the longest coastlines (more than 8,500 km), and savanna with the greatest biodiversity in the world.
A significant part of Brazil's economy relies on the use of natural resources for production inputs. Due to the importance of its natural resource base, Brazil faces major challenges to strengthen the sustainable use of its natural resources.
Key environmental issues in Brazil to be addressed by the program include: deforestation from unsustainable use of natural resources in the Amazon rainforest; conservation of the remaining Atlantic Forest, water quality and availability; and increased energy demand, straining Brazil's clean energy matrix.
"The social and economic cost of environmental destruction is high. Smooth coordination of policies and procedures within the Brazilian environmental management system, combined with an increased commitment from the financial sector to long-term sustainability, is key to guaranteeing that specific actions and investments in the area can achieve the best possible results, ensuring growth that is environmentally sustainable and socially inclusive," said Makhtar Diop, World Bank Country Director for Brazil.
The program supports Brazil's commitment to better environmental and poverty outcomes while implementing a model of accelerated competitiveness and growth. This will be done by emphasizing incentives, such as efforts to increase the value of standing forests, and economic instruments, such as increasing the environmental profile of development finance facilities as integral parts of the Government's environmental management strategy.
This will promote the sustainable management of agricultural lands, forests and water resources; reduce deforestation in the Amazon; reduce the environmental degradation of land, water and other resources which are key determinants of the well-being of the poor; and promote renewable energy.