It is agreed that a large part of the deforestation in the Amazon is illegal. However, the strategic article “The ecosystem of environmental crime in the Amazon: an analysis of the unlawful economies of the forest” provides an x-ray of the practices that encourage it, such as the unlawful extraction of timber, illegal mining (mainly gold), land grabbing and agricultural and cattle breeding activities with environmental liabilities. The document uses a detailed and unprecedented analysis of 369 operations carried out by the Federal Police between 2016 and 2021 as a basis. The data shows that environmental crime promotes, or is promoted by, other crimes, among which fraud, corruption and money laundering stand out. Read more here.

It is important to emphasize that the present time calls, once again, for the effort of civil society and parliamentarians to bar Bill 191, which authorizes mining in indigenous lands. On March 3, federal deputy Ricardo Barros (PP) collected enough signatures to file the request for the Bill to be processed urgently with the Steering Committee. Jair Bolsonaro, the president of the Republic, defended the urgency of the text created by the Executive Branch with the argument that there is potassium in the Amazon (part of it in indigenous lands), which is a mineral used in the production of fertilizers – and, with the war in Ukraine, Brazil and the rest of the world will find it difficult to buy the Russian fertilizers used in agriculture. This Bill must be stopped.

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