Lula Has Foreign Accomplices in the Destruction of the Amazon

News reports on May 19 announced that more than 10,000 square miles of the Amazon rainforest had been deforested over the last year – an area the size of the state of Massachusetts in the US.

Not only is the Amazon rainforest an area of breathtaking beauty and unparalleled biodiversity, through the process of photosynthesis it also ensures the survival of the human race, with its billions of trees producing much of the world’s supply of oxygen.


While ultimately Brazil’s progressive President, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, bears the brunt of this fiasco, the U.S. and European nations also generously share in the responsibility for the destruction of vast swaths of the country’s rainforest.


They have promoted the neo-liberal economic polices that persuaded Brazil to rely on the strength of its constantly expanding agricultural sector to pay down its suffocating international debt.


As a result, loggers have felled hundreds of thousands of hectares of trees and farmers have cleared vast tracks of the rainforest to grow crops.


Just as was the case under former President Fernando Henrique Cardoso, the negative repercussions which result from this arboreal massacre, were relatively mild because – despite presidential declarations to the contrary – Brazil’s environmental polices under Lula have been much more bark than bite.


Brasí­lia, under the “people’s president” has failed to fulfill its commitment to prevent further destruction of the Amazon rainforest as promised last year when Lula announced a $140 million campaign to preserve and ensure better policing of the fragile habitat.


However, external economic factors also have certainly played a role in persuading the government to turn a blind eye to the desecration of its own rainforest.


It is critical to our common planet’s survival that the U.S. and the EU develop a comprehensive plan with teeth, in cooperation with Brazil, in order to provide the financial incentives necessary to preserve the rainforest, while also strengthening Brazil’s competitiveness in the global economy.


The U.S. and the EU would be wise to accept this responsibility in order to temper the dangerous extremes involved in their push for globalization and the maximization of free trade that threatens the very integrity of the environment, if not the very survival of the human race.


This analysis was prepared by COHA Research Associates, Hampden Macbeth. The Council on Hemispheric Affairs (COHA) – www.coha.org – is a think tank established in 1975 to discuss and promote inter-American relationship. Email: coha@coha.org.

Tags:

  • Show Comments (0)

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

comment *

  • name *

  • email *

  • website *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Ads

You May Also Like

Brazil’s Petrobras Orders 10 Floating Platforms for New Oil Findings

Brazil's state-controlled oil and gas multinational Petrobras announced Monday, September 15, that its board of ...

Brazil Claims Its Credit Worthiness is Better than the US’s. Not so fast!

Brazil’s minister of Finance, Guido Mantega, said this Wednesday, June 15, that the risk ...

Brazil Lula’s New Battle Cry: We Must Be Eclectic

Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva said this Wednesday, February 22, in Marabá, ...

The Love Visa

Are you thinking about bringing your beloved from Brazil? Chance meetings through the Internet ...

Brazil Expecting a 2.5% Decline in Agricultural Production

Data released this Wednesday, December 17, by the IBGE (Brazilian Institute of Geography and ...

Brazil Sees Bad Faith in EU’s Proposal

The new European Union proposal with regard to “market access,” received on September 29th ...

In Brazil, 30% of Inmates Are 24 or Younger. Still There’s No Program to Educate Them

The report,”Moving Agreements on from Paper,” drafted by more than 40 NGO’s (non-governmental organizations) ...

Brazil: For Some, Slavery Is the Only Option

It is estimated that between 25 and 40 thousand workers live under slave-like conditions ...

Brazil: Lula Takes Zero Hunger to UN

Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva will once again call for a world ...

Culture Spots: a Brazil Plan to Spread the Brazilian Way

The creation of Culture Spots (Pontos de Cultura) abroad is intended to help Brazilians ...