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(Un)Sustainable Amazon: Deforestation Burn Out Illegal Land Grabbing Legitimation in Brazil

Igor Gomes de Araújo, Luciana Ramos Jordão, Thiago Henrique Costa Silva, Rebeca Barbosa Moura, Victória Cardoso Carrijo, Barbara Luiza Rodrigues, Niury Ohan Pereira Magno, Thays Dias Silva, Letícia Versiane Arantes Dantas

State University of Goiás, Law College (Southeast Campus: Morrinhos), Brazil


The Brazilian environmental issue is always at the centre of environmental agendas whether at the national or global level, especially when it comes to the Legal Amazon. However, since 2019, with the tenure of President Bolsonaro, the sustainability measures already consolidated in the country remain threatened. To portray these threats, Provisional Measure 910 and Bill 2963/2019 are being studied, which aim at restructuring the means of territorial occupation, encouraging the process of land grabbing, burning and deforestation in the Legal Amazon. In this context, it is asked: do the rules implemented in the Bolsonaro government act as precursors and maintainers of environmental problems in the Amazon? To answer, in a qualitative perspective, guided by historical and dialectical methods, bibliographic, documentary research and indirect data analysis were carried out. According to the Amazon Environmental Research Institute (IPAM), there was a 50% increase in deforestation in 2019, compared to 2018. Between August 2019 and July 2020, according to the National Institute for Space Research (INPE), there were 11,088 km2 of lost area of the biome, three times more than agreed in the 2009 Climate Convention. As for the fires, INPE registered 103,161 fires in the forest in 2020, a value 15.7% higher than in 2019. In turn, land grabbing is also a constant and growing phenomenon, with 23% of its public lands not designated, equivalent to 11.6 million hectares, being irregularly declared as private property, according to research carried out by IPAM, together with researchers from the Federal University of Pará. In 2020, for the simple dissemination of data, INPE managers and researchers were criticised by the government and removed from their positions. The interference system in environmental agencies by the federal government, such as the Brazilian Institute for the Environment and Renewable Natural Resources and the Chico Mendes Institute for Biodiversity Conservation, has been the object of denunciation by researchers and public servants since 2019. Therefore, it is concluded by the list of causality between the implementations of these new norms and the political agenda of weakening environmental guidelines with the increase of environmental degradation, especially in the Amazon.

Keywords: Amazonian territory, ambiental degradation, sustainability, territorial occupation

Contact Address: Igor Gomes de Araújo, State University of Goiás, Law College (Southeast Campus: Morrinhos), AV. A QD. A LT C-13, MORRINHOS, Brazil, e-mail: igor.gomesa@gmail.com

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