“It is not sensible to expect any solutions for the Amazon to stem from closed-door meetings with its worst enemy,” reads the letter, which is addressed to the US authorities. “Any project to help Brazil must be built from dialogue with civil society, subnational governments, academia and, above all, with the local communities that know how to protect the forest and the goods and services it harbors.”
“No talks should move forward until Brazil has slashed deforestation rates to the level required by the national climate change law and until the string of bill proposals sent to Congress containing environmental setbacks is withdrawn,” the letter additionally stated.
Brazil’s Foreign Ministry instructed NCS in an announcement that the US and Brazil are “studying the possibility of deepening bilateral cooperation” on the surroundings and deforestation and that discussions are “strictly intergovernmental.” The Brazilian Environment Ministry didn’t reply to a request for remark.
Deforestation in the Amazon
Things have modified since Biden turned president. “Negotiating teams of the two countries have come together to deepen understandings about the needs and opportunities to enhance the Amazon biome and combat illegal deforestation, among other topics,” the Brazilian Foreign Ministry instructed NCS.
“The dialogues have progressed consistently in areas of Brazilian interest, such as financing and technical collaboration oriented towards actions to combat deforestation in the Amazon region,” it added.
The US sees the nation as a significant partner to mitigating local weather change and lowering international emissions, the State Department spokesperson stated, and “supporting and encouraging Brazil’s actions to reduce deforestation and lock in a pathway to a strong net zero-emissions future” is a “key focus” for the Biden administration.
Doing so would require “solutions that include local community engagement, including indigenous and traditional communities, as well as new technologies and approaches to providing incentives,” the spokesperson additionally stated.
But some environmental advocates in Brazil are cautious. According to Marcio Astrini, head of the environmental community Climate Observatory, which signed the protest letter, they have been left in the darkish about what the US and Brazil are considering. “We are really concerned about what’s being negotiated now, and what are the bases of the agreement?” Astrini stated.
The US has not stated if it will supply funds to Brazil for local weather cooperation. Neither the State Department nor the White House responded to requests for remark about Salles’ remarks.
Reporting contributed by NCS’s Flora Charner, Shasta Darlington, and Ivana Kottasova.