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90% of Amazon Timber Is Illegal and Brazil Buys Most of It

Ninety percent of all the timber currently produced in the Amazon is of illegal origin. This assertion was made by the coordinator of Greenpeace’s Cities Friends of the Amazon project, Adriana Imparato, quoting estimates released by the Brazilian Institute of Environment and Renewable Natural Resources (Ibama).

Imparato said that 64% of all the timber produced in Brazil is consumed by the domestic market. "We are the ones who are feeding and financing the destruction of the forest by buying this wood," she affirmed.

According to the estimates, a third of all the timber that is produced is consumed by the machinery of the State. "The State machine is committing an environmental crime by buying timber of illegal origin, the fruit of deforestation," Imparato emphasized.

For this reason, Greenpeace calls for legislation regulating timber consumption by government bodies.

The Brazilian state with the largest timber consumption is São Paulo, which consumes around 15% of the country’s total production. São Paulo leads the states of the South and Southeast regions, which, together, consume 27% of all the timber that is produced.

According to Imparato, the biggest consumer markets are the cities of São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro and the Greater ABC region in the São Paulo metropolitan area.

The coordinator of the Cities Friends of the Amazon project underscored the importance of preserving the forest. According to Imparato, nearly 17% of the Amazon rain forest has already been deforested.

"And scientists from all around the world say that, if we reach a 40% level of deforestation, we shall enter a process of desertification that is irreversible," she recalled.

She referred to the recent drought in certain areas of the Amazon as an example of the consequences of the process of environmental degradation.

Agência Brasil

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