Stolen amazon: Why NGOs and agribusiness are together to fight land grabbing

Stolen amazon: Why NGOs and agribusiness are together to fight land grabbing

Brazilian campaign to end land grabbing in Amazon is presented to COP25 at a press conference on December 11th, from 2:00 to 2:30 pm, at room MOCHA (Hall 4)

What: Stolen amazon: Why NGOs and agribusiness are together to fight land grabbing

When: December 11th, 2019

Where: Press Conference Room MOCHA (Hall 4)

Hours: 2:00 to 2:30 pm

Who: Spokespersons:

  • André Guimarães, Brazilian Coalition on Climate, Forests and Agriculture and executive director of Amazon Research Institute – IPAM
  • Brenda Brito, senior researcher at Amazon Institute of Man and Environment – IMAZON
  • Marcello Brito, board of directors president of Brazilian Agribusiness Association – ABAG

The “Seja Legal com a Amazônia” (Be Legal with the Amazon) campaign, launched in Brazil this September, will be presented to the international community at a press conference during the UN Climate Conference (COP25). This group initiative from representatives of the agribusiness, private companies, and NGOs aims to ask for effective measures to stop land grabbing in the region, one of the main causes of illegal deforestation, violence, corruption, and economic decline in the Amazon.

During the conference, a fact sheet will be presented with an overview of how land grabbers are operating and what are the main consequences of this crime to the Amazon region. The document details why land grabbing of public lands still happens and what we need to do to end it. A serie of short videos with audios obtained by the Federal Police and Federal Prosecution Service (MPF) during operations in the Amazon will also be released, showing conversations between land grabbers and demonstrating the benefits obtained by the organized crime from public land theft.

About 60% of Amazon forests are on public land, and in 2018, according to data from the Instituto de Pesquisa da Amazônia (Amazonian Research Institute – IPAM), at least 40% of deforestation in the region occurred in these areas, including indigenous lands, conservation units and undesignated public forests.

Seja Legal com a Amazônia (Be Legal with the Amazon)

The campaign Seja Legal com a Amazônia (Be Legal with the Amazon) seeks to raise awareness among the population and especially decision makers about this type of illegal activity and suggests to different government agencies measures needed to end it. Among the measures required by the initiative is carrying out operations to fight public lands heist and to establish a Judiciary Task Force with the goal to resolve land ownership disputes on public lands. In addition, the campaign wants to end the illegal deforestation of public lands and maintain the current conservation units in the country.

Complete information is available at www.sejalegalcomaamazonia.org.br (website in portuguese) or https://www.en.sejalegalcomaamazonia.org.br/ (website in english). At the website it is possible to sign the manifesto calling for an end to the land grabbing in brazilian public forests. By signing the manifesto, the supporter sends an email to the Attorney General and the Minister of Justice, asking for support.

In Madrid, will attend the press conference the representative of Coalizão Brasil Clima, Florestas e Agricultura (Brazilian Coalition on Climate, Forests and Agriculture) and CEO of Instituto de Pesquisa da Amazônia (Amazon Research Institute – IPAM), André Guimarães, the board of directors president of Associação Brasileira do Agronegócio (Brazilian Agribusiness Association – ABAG), Marcello Brito, and a senior researcher at Instituto do Homem e Meio Ambiente da Amazônia (Amazon Institute of Man and Environment – IMAZON), Brenda Brito.

What is land grabbing (“grilagem”)

Land grabbing is the private, irregular and criminal appropriation of public lands, known as “grilagem” (in Portuguese). It is pointed as one of the main causes of deforestation in the Amazon, besides increasing violence, alienating legal investors, harming producers and delaying the region economic development.

The criminal groups commonly encroach on public lands, steal wood, burn the forest and simulate livestock to try to forge possession documents and speculate the land. This action is only possible through the payment of bribes and corruption in notary’s offices and other government agencies. With fake title deeds, huge areas that belong to Brazilians are exploited and sold for millions of reais (Brazilian currency) in a grand corruption scheme that benefits criminal gangs and harms the nation’s interests.

*Campaign is signed by the following entities:

  • ABAG – Associação Brasileira do Agronegócio (Brazilian Agribusiness Association)
  • ABIEC – Associação Brasileira das Indústrias Exportadoras de Carnes (Brazilian Association of Meat Exporting Industries)
  • AIPC – Associação das Indústrias Processadoras de Cacau (Cocoa Processing Industries Association)
  • CEBDS – Conselho Empresarial Brasileiro para o Desenvolvimento Sustentável (Brazilian Business Council for Sustainable Development)
  • Coalizão Brasil Clima, Florestas e Agricultura (Brazilian Coalition on Climate, Forests and Agriculture)
  • GTPS – Grupo de Trabalho da Pecuária Sustentável (Sustainable Livestock Working Group)
  • IBÁ – Indústria Brasileira de Árvores (Brazilian Tree Industry)
  • Imazon – Instituto do Homem e Meio Ambiente da Amazônia (Amazon Institute of Man and Environment)
  • Instituto Ethos (Ethos Institute)
  • IPAM – Instituto de Pesquisa da Amazônia (Amazon Research Institute)

PRESS CONTACTS

Fernanda Macedo

Coalizão Brasil Clima, Florestas e Agricultura

[email protected]

Whatsapp: +55 11 98545-0237