|Deforestation in Brazil has surged under President Jair Bolsonaro, who has slashed funding for environmental programs since he took office in 2019 and is pushing to open protected lands to mining and agribusiness (File photo by=Carl De Souza via AFP)|
[Asia News Communication = Reporter Reakkana] On Thursday (Apr 8), a coalition of environmental groups and agribusiness companies prompted President Jair Bolsonaro's administration to set "more ambitious" goals to curb Brazil's emissions and protect the Amazon rainforest at this month's US-organised climate summit, AFP reported.
"Brazil is a key country in the global effort to achieve climate balance," said the Brazil Climate, Forests and Agriculture Coalition, a group of more than 280 organizations and firms. "Its climate goals need to be more ambitious ... The country urgently needs to significantly reduce greenhouse gases, work to eliminate illegal deforestation, and fight environmental crimes." Deforestation in Brazil increased under Bolsonaro, who has slashed funding for environmental programs since he took office in 2019 and is pushing to open protected lands to mining and agribusiness.
In the 12 months to August 2020, deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon increased 9.5 percent, destroying an area larger than Jamaica, according to government data. But Brazil has in the past played a leading role in the fight against climate change, underlining the coalition, whose members range from environmental groups such as the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) to ag firms such as Cargill. The virtual climate summit on Apr 22-23 is sponsored by US President Joe Biden, who has invited 40 world leaders, including Bolsonaro.