The President of Brazil announced decrees establishing protected reserves in areas inhabited by indigenous peoples. In this way, Lula da Silva fulfilled the promise made during last year’s election campaign, during which he committed to stop the process of deforestation of the Amazon forests.
This means, as commentators on the Saturday evening editions of the Brazilian TV news emphasize, that they will not be areas of expansion for intensive agriculture and livestock or industrial investment.
Fulfillment of the promise
The ceremonial signing of the decrees took place in the capital of the country, Brasília, at the end of a five-day meeting of representatives of indigenous peoples living from time immemorial, e.g. Brazilian areas of the Amazon rainforest.
In this way, Lula da Silva fulfilled the promise made during last year’s election campaign, during which he committed to stop the process of deforestation of the Amazon forests.
The Brazilian scientific journal Nature reported in its latest issue that over the past four years, the rate of deforestation in the Amazon for farming, land cultivation and the legal and illegal exploitation of mineral resources has accelerated by 129 percent.
The key role of rainforests
Scientists associated with this journal emphasize that the vast Amazon rainforest, absorbing huge amounts of carbon dioxide, plays an extremely important role in slowing down climate change on our planet.
Two of the six indigenous reserves designated by presidential decree are located in the Brazilian Amazon.
Outside of these areas, two reserves have been established in the northeast Brazil. These lands will remain under the jurisdiction of the federal government, but a presidential decree granted indigenous peoples the right to use these lands in a traditional form.
On his first day in office in January this year, President Lula da Silva established, for the first time in the history of the country, the Ministry of Indigenous Affairs.
Main photo source: PAP/EPA/Andre Borges