Global Warming May Cost Brazil Up to US$ 2 Trillion a Year in 40 Years

Burned forest in Brazil Brazil will lose between US$ 417 billion (in an optimist scenario) and US$ 2 trillion of its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per year by 2050 thanks to global warming. This means, in the worst scenario, the GDP might be reduced in 2.3% by the middle of the century.

This is one of the scary conclusions of a report just released by several Brazilian universities and the main specialists in climate and agriculture of the country. They worked for two years in a document that evaluates the possible impacts of the raising temperatures and climate instability. "It is like wasting a whole year of growth during the next 40 years", says the study.

Among their main conclusions:

* The temperature may rise 8°C (46.4°F) by 2100 in the Amazon region and it may undergo a radical transformation, becoming more like a savanna. The south, the southeast and the east parts of the basin might lose 40% of their forests.

* The Northeast of the country (including the states of Bahia and Pernambuco) are also very vulnerable. Agriculture and cattle farming will have important losses because of the lack of rains in a region that is already very arid.

* The hydro power dams – main responsible for the generation of electricity in the country – will be less reliable.

* Agriculture shouldn't have major problems in the southern states (including São Paulo, Minas Gerais, Rio de Janeiro and Rio Grande do Sul).

* Soy, corn and coffee production will have to reduce their cultivated areas (34%, 15% and 18%, respectively), while sugar cane plantations will not decline.

* When the level of the oceans elevates and the weather gets more violent, the losses along the Brazilian coast should range from US$ 79 billion to US$ 120 billion.

The study stresses that the poorest regions of the country should be the most affected. It also lists a series of measures that could minimize those risks. Among them, incentives to alternative energies and carbon markets; investments in genetically improved plants, adapted to the growing droughts, and in improved irrigation techniques; and coastal management.

Besides the dark conclusions, the study is surprising because of the quality of the organizations involved. From Universidade de São Paulo and Universidade Estadual de Campinas (Unicamp) to the World Bank and a few non-profits, such as the brilliant Instituto de Pesquisa Ambiental da Amazônia (Inpa). 

It is the final proof that climate change and the environmental matters really are attracting the attention they deserve.

Brazilian born, French citizen, married to an American, Regina Scharf is the ultimate globetrotter. She graduated in Biology and Journalism from USP (Universidade de São Paulo) and has worked for Folha de S. Paulo, Gazeta Mercantil and Veja magazine as well as Radio France Internationale. Since 2004 she has lived in Santa Fe, New Mexico, in the US. She authored or co-authored several books in Portuguese on environmental issues and was honored by the 2002 Reuters-IUCN Press award for Latin America and by the 2004 Prêmio Ethos. You can read more by her at Deep Brazil – www.deepbrazil.com.

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  • Show Comments (4)

  • Job opportunities

    Global Warming
    If we people will not make efforts to make some solutions and plans for the effects of Global Warming this will totally destroy each of our productions. This will surely harm our source of living and income. The government must implement rules that will make people knowledgeable about the Climate Change and what people can do to change this. People should know that they can contribute some changes to make a better world without Global warming.

  • USA_Male

    Regina Scharf the coke sniffer Brazilian born, French citizen, married to an American, and the “ultimate globetrotter. Pffft, she traveled the world in a commerical jet and private jet of AL PINHEAD GORE. do you folks really believe that globel warming bull crap?
    What do those experts really know? With who’s numbers and studies on climate change are they doing their study with? Al Gore’s numbers maybe? Regina the hippie and coke sniffer in NY, Al Gore and his gang really know damn well how to scare individuals with this shit. Global warming my ass, the world is just chaning and we just adopt, get cleaner or whateverand survive by staying innovative… Let’s not forget, nothing in life stays the same, neither mother nature..it’s constantly in change. I’m sure Lula the fake socialist knows that too and just want more m oney from the so called rich nations who are debt.

  • Ric

    Do It Quickly
    Get the gringos to make a definite iron-bound commitment before 2010 or you may never get the opportunity again. The incoming crew will less abestado than the outgoing.

  • zeke

    “Brazil’s president said that “gringos” should pay Amazon nations to prevent deforestation, insisting rich Western nations have caused much more past environmental destruction than the loggers and farmers who cut and burn trees in the world’s largest tropical rain forest.”
    http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5hUKQRt9yA6HDZZOPy9xQPz7crUoAD9C7SQDG1

    How ironic. The same country that ostensibly has so much to lose from global warming purports to force the rest of the world to pay it to not contribute to it.

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