Brazilian Environment Minister Ricardo Salles announced Wednesday the launch of a national plan to combat deforestation in the Amazon, following a 29.5% increase between August 2018 and last July in that region.
According to that ministry, the plan against deforestation is based on five main axes: "land regularization; ecological-economic zoning; payment for environmental services; bioeconomy; and zero tolerance against illegal deforestation".
Salles argues that "land regularization" is a way of reducing environmental conflicts in that region, such as irregular land occupation.
According to the official, the actions could be funded by the Operation Lava Jato fund, which directed 430 million reais (93 million euros) for states to fight for the preservation of the Amazon.
The Lava Jato Fund, the largest anti-corruption operation in Brazil, is the result of negotiations to end investigations of Petrobras in the United States due to embezzlement in the Brazilian state oil company that would have hurt US investors.
The presentation of the plan came after a meeting on Wednesday morning between Ricardo Salles and the governors of the nine states that make up the Brazilian Amazon, which aimed to discuss measures to promote the sustainable development of the region, as well as the fight against crimes. environmental
According to the minister, the sum of efforts of various entities also includes the inclusion of local populations in the process, so that they can have employment and income creation opportunities, so that they can collaborate with preservation.
"This issue is directly related to the vocation of states and the idea of inclusion to preserve: the inclusion of people, families and those who live in the richest region of the country with the worst index of human development," said Salles, quoted. by the Environment folder.
The deforestation rate of the Brazilian Amazon increased by 29.5% between August 2018 and July 2019, compared with the previous year, according to data released on Monday by the National Institute for Space Research (INPE).
The agency linked to the Brazilian Government reported that, during that period, the largest rainforest in the world lost 9,762 square kilometers of its vegetation cover, reaching the highest level of deforestation recorded in the country since 2008.
However, the Minister of the Environment did not set a deadline for the presentation of results against environmental crimes.
Following the announcement of the new deforestation plan, the non-governmental organization (NGO) Greenpeace classified the project as vague.
"Faced with the challenge of stopping deforestation, the Environment Minister has made vague proposals to address the problem. Fighting deforestation requires clearer and more ambitious goals, with effective actions," the NGO wrote on the Twitter social network, criticizing the actions. from the government.
Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has caused controversy Wednesday by stating that the fires and deforestation of forests and forests will not end because they are part of the country's culture.
"You will not end deforestation or burning, it is cultural," said Jair Bolsonaro outside the Alvorada Palace in Brasilia, the official residence of the Brazilian President.
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