Brazilian Government Bans Fires in the Amazon and Pantanal for 120 Days

Decree provides for four exceptions and is an attempt to show more effective action in the environmental area


A decree by President Jair Bolsonaro published in the Federal Official Gazette this Thursday (16th) suspends the use of fire in the Amazon and the Pantanal for 120 days.

The text, also signed by the Minister of the Environment, Ricardo Salles, says the following: Article one states the prohibition applies "in the national territory." Article 2 states that "controlled burning" is authorized in areas not located in the Legal Amazon and in the Pantanal, when they are essential for carrying out agricultural practices, as long as previously authorized by the state environmental agency. "

Porto Velho, in Rondônia. (Foto: André Cran/Folhapress) - Folhapress

The deadline starts from this Thursday.

Even in the Amazon and the Pantanal, there are exceptions to the use of fire: fire prevention and fighting practices carried out or supervised by the responsible public institutions; subsistence agricultural practices performed by traditional and indigenous populations; scientific research activities carried out by a scientific, technological and innovation institution, provided they are authorized by the competent environmental agency; and phytosanitary control, provided that the competent environmental agency also authorizes it.

In June, deforestation in the Amazon increased by one month compared to the previous year, the 14th month in a row, and is the highest since 2016, according to data from Deter, an INPE program (National Institute for Space Research). The system measures forest clearing practically in real-time and assists Ibama's actions to combat environmental crimes.

Translated by Kiratiana Freelon

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