In Brazil, an agribusiness haven’s green pivot leaves many skeptical

In Brazil, an agribusiness haven’s green pivot leaves many skeptical

A project originally aimed to fuel agribusiness in one of the most heavily deforested parts of the Brazilian Amazon is now being touted by the government as a “green” and “sustainable” initiative that will help protect the forest and may be replicated in other parts of the biome. The switch in the narrative around Amacro, as the project was initially named, happened in a matter of a year, following strong criticism from authorities and environmentalists. But despite its ostensibly good intentions, it has been received with caution by prosecutors, researchers and nonprofits working with traditional communities. The Amacro project came to life in March 2020, named after the border region between the Amazonian states of Amazonas (AM), Acre (AC) and Rondônia (RO). It encompasses 32 municipalities and 465,800 square kilometers (180,000 square miles), more than three times the size of New York state, in one of the parts of the Amazon Rainforest under the greatest deforestation pressure. These municipalities’ contribution to the total deforestation in the nine states that make up the Brazilian Amazon has increased consistently over the past 12 years, from 8% in 2008 to 30% in 2018, before dipping to 24% in 2020, according to a Mongabay survey based on data from the National Institute for Space Research (INPE). Amacro comprises the region of southern Amazonas, east of Acre and northwest of Rondônia. Image by Fábio Alencar/Suframa. Championed by Assuero Veronez, the head of Acre’s Agriculture Federation, who said “deforestation is a synonym for progress,” Amacro was…This article was originally published on Mongabay

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