, Volume 41, Issue 3, pp 309-314
Date: 18 Oct 2011

Brazilian Amazon: A Significant Five Year Drop in Deforestation Rates but Figures are on the Rise Again

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Brazilian officials have recently announced that, after a five year lull, deforestation rates are again on the rise in the Legal Amazon (INPE 2011). While this may come as no surprise to some, it is still useful to examine the conditions which have led to the unexpected success by the authorities in reducing deforestation over the previous 5 years. The more so in that these years were characterized by rising agricultural commodity prices, usually a key driver in deforestation dynamics. We argue here that, despite the strong efforts by national and regional authorities to control deforestation processes a reversal of the trend was bound to occur as new policies were set into motion during the relatively quiet deforestation period to accommodate the economic aspirations of a growing population in Amazonia. Such aspirations were voiced in the National Congress, when deputies voted in May 2011 to relax the forest code laws. In a probable anticipation of such reform, an unambigu

This synopsis was not peer reviewed.