Almost 800 entities criticize environmental ‘division’ – 05/25/2023 – Environment

Almost 800 entities criticize environmental ‘division’ – 05/25/2023 – Environment

A manifesto signed by 790 entities —among NGOs, universities, social movements and associations— asks political leaders in Brasília to correct mistakes in MP 1,154, whose version approved by the mixed committee of Congress on Wednesday (24) emptied the MMA (Ministry of of the Environment) and the MPI (Ministries of Indigenous Peoples).

“Voting in favor of these mistakes means supporting the reduction of Brazil’s ability to combat deforestation, to ensure balance in the multiple use of water and to guarantee the effectiveness of the constitutional rights of indigenous peoples and the protection of human rights”, says the letter. .

“There is no administrative reason that justifies the dismemberment of MMA and the reduction of power of the MPI”, points out the text.

The points criticized are the withdrawal of powers from the MMA over the CAR (Rural Environmental Registry), the ANA (National Water Agency) and the management of solid waste and sanitation, in addition to the loss of two fundamental attributions of the newly created Ministry of Peoples Indigenous peoples: the demarcation of indigenous lands and the administration of Funai.

The approval of the text had the support of the government, which opened up the opportunity for two other anti-environmental agendas. Also on Wednesday (24), the Chamber of Deputies approved the urgent regime for processing PL 490, which establishes a time frame for the recognition of indigenous lands.

Deputies also included anti-environmental amendments in MP 1,150, which was approved by the plenary of the Chamber with a relaxation of the Atlantic Forest Law —an excerpt that had been removed from the matter in the Senate. The MP goes to the presidential sanction. On Twitter, the president of the PT, Gleisi Hoffmann, stated that President Lula should veto the section that makes the law more flexible.

The bundle of anti-environmental approvals on the same day shocked environmentalists at home and internationally.

“If the environment and the protection of indigenous rights are threatened, I wonder how reliable Lula’s commitment is,” he said. Sheet German MEP Anna Cavazzini, vice-president of the delegation for relations with Brazil in the European Parliament.

“If these agendas lose their way in Brazil, the already criticized trade agreement [entre a União Europeia e o Mercosul] will further lose public support [europeu]”, says Cavazzini.

Influential in the French press, French political scientist François Gemenne also voiced criticism, using Twitter.

“Despite his support for Russia, many in Europe continue to see Lula as an icon. He is now about to give way to the deforestation lobbies and strip the Ministries of the Environment and Indigenous Peoples so that deforestation can resume at full speed. steam,” said Gemenne, who is an expert on climate change and author of the UN climate panel.

The CAR (Rural Environmental Registry) suffered cuts in the two provisional measures that advanced this Wednesday.

In addition to the proposal contained in MP 1154, which transfers the CAR to the Ministry of Management and Innovation in Public Services, MP 1150 also weakens the CAR’s link with the financial system, which today already uses information from rural landowners’ records to avoid financing deforestation-related activities.

According to researchers from the CPI (Climate Policy Initiative), the “text threatens the alignment of the financial system with sustainability by seeking to restrict the ability of financial institutions to deny loans based on non-compliance with the Forestry Code and the Environmental Crimes Law”.

“The CAR cannot be subject to ministerial changes, under the risk of an environmental blackout for rural properties. The National Congress needs to recognize its responsibility for the future sustainability of Brazilian agribusiness”, said the CPI in a note this Thursday ( 25).

Another manifestation, signed by the entities that make up Conama (National Council for the Environment), states that the set of anti-environmental measures approved by Congress meet “the interests of various economic and political sectors that are trapped in a past associated with the degradation and denial of severity of environmental crises”.

By asking for the reversal of the proposals, the letter suggests that President Lula use his “constitutional powers” to avoid measures “typical of backward and denialist governments, already defeated at the polls by Brazilians”.

The parliamentarians gathered at the parliamentary front of the indigenous peoples also spoke by letter, gathering hundreds of signatures from entities and individuals.

“We defend the need to maintain the original text of provisional measure 1.154/23. A contrary measure will make it impossible to resume Brazilian public policies, essential for guaranteeing society’s rights over the environment and the rights of indigenous peoples and other peoples and communities traditional, as well as essential for the economic development and image of Brazil abroad”, says the letter.

The Planeta em Transe project is supported by the Open Society Foundations.

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