Ibama Denies Petrobras' Request to Drill for Oil at The Mouth of the Amazon

The institution showed concern about the oil company's activities in a region of socio-environmental vulnerability

The president of Ibama (Brazilian Institute for the Environment and Renewable Natural Resources), Rodrigo Agostinho, followed the agency's technical opinion and denied this Wednesday (17) a request made by Petrobras to drill the basin at the mouth of the Amazon River with the goal of exploring for oil in the region.

The decision was taken after Ibama showed concern regarding the oil company's activities in a region of socio-environmental vulnerability.

Foz do rio Amazonas
Greenpeace is campaigning to protect the recently discovered Amazon Reef off the coast of Brazil and French Guiana from development by Total and BP oil company. French Guiana mangroves and all the coast land is threatened by oil exploration and their oil spill risks. - Elsa Palito/Greenpeace Brasil

"There is no doubt that Petrobras was offered every opportunity to remedy critical points of its project, but that such project still presents concerning inconsistencies for the safe operation in a new exploratory frontier of high socio-environmental vulnerability", says Agostinho in the document.

The initial drilling was the target of pressure from Petrobras, the Ministry of Mines and Energy, and even from the leader of the government in Congress, Randolfe Rodrigues (Rede-AP), who is from the state where the place the company intended to drill is located.

As Folha showed, however, Ibama had already indicated that there was a lack of studies to prove that drilling, even if initially and for the purpose of studies, would not have an environmental impact.

Translated by Cassy Dias

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