According to the National Institute for Space Research (Inpe), the area under deforestation alerts in the Amazon fell 42.5% from January to July 2023 compared to the same period of the previous year. The numbers were positive even during the dry season. In July, the drop was 66%, a rate that was repeated in August.
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In the week that the country celebrates Amazon Day, Bem Viver, a Brasil de Fato program, spoke with André Lima, responsible for the Extraordinary Secretariat for Deforestation Control and Territorial Environmental Planning of the Ministry of the Environment. He says that Brazil managed to consolidate the reduction in the deforestation rate and explains what measures the government intends to take to ensure that deforestation continues to fall.
“But you can’t stop to celebrate, you have to celebrate by working. Because in fact, we are verifying that there has been a consistent response and on a positive scale of reduction. In my assessment, in these first months, what was done in a in a very substantial way is the command and control agenda. It is to improve, optimize, give more intelligence and efficiency to inspection. And this was done even with a smaller number of inspectors compared to a few years ago”, stated the secretary.
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In contrast to the previous government, which dismantled the environmental inspection structure and gave the green light to deforesters, statistics allow us to say that the Amazon has returned to pre-Bolsonaro levels of devastation.
In 2023, the total embargoed areas in the Amazon were 280 thousand hectares, 213 thousand on private properties and 67 thousand on public lands. The value of environmental fines applied in the biome is already close to R$1 billion.
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“A big new thing that we implemented in this line of inspection are remote embargoes, that is, we are enhancing the use of technology, not only to detect deforestation and mobilize field inspection, but also to apply sanctions remotely. And this starts to generate results, because we multiply our inspection capacity by 10”, explained Lima.
Even so, scientists warn of the concrete possibility that agribusiness will take the biome to the so-called point of no return, when environmental degradation will be so profound that it will be impossible to reverse it.
And there’s more…
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At Comida de Verdade, Gema Soto, from Gastronomia Periférica, teaches a typical recipe from Venezuela, of indigenous heritage: cachapas.
In Health Tip, learn how to get free dental care.
In Brumadinho, Minas Gerais, a community closely follows the restoration of a church that is over 300 years old.
And Bigu Comunicatividade gives a shout out from Recife, Pernambuco.
When and where to watch
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Editing: Marina Duarte de Souza