In the last thirty years Brazil has made huge strides in terms of conserving its natural landscapes. Among other things successive governments have i) passed a progressive Forest Code that makes it a legal requirement for landowners to protected natural habitats on their properties, ii) contributed 80% of the global expansion of protected areas between 2001 and 2007 and iii) is the country that has granted the most land rights to traditional and indigenous peoples. In addition Brazil demonstrated international environmental leadership by hosting the 1992 UN Rio Earth Summit and the UN Rio +20 conference on sustainable development.
These gains risk being reversed if Jair Bolsonaro is elected president of Brazil in the run-off elections on October 28. Bolsonaro is the leader of the far-right social liberal party and openly anti-environmental. Media outlets have already reacted positing that he is a potential threat to Brazils’ environmental institutions, the Amazon, global change.
In this special OCTF panel discussion we will come together to discuss and debate the likely future of Brazil’s environmental institutions under Bolsonaro’s presidency. Four experts on the Brazilian politics and the environment will provide their analysis of the situation as an input to a collective discussion on possible actions if, as seems likely, Bolsonaro assumes the presidency.