Tuesday, June 23, 2009

MORE GOOD NEWS FROM AMAZÔNIA

I'm back in Rio Branco, Acre where development can take on some interesting twists like the for-walking-only new bridge

Rio Branco pedestrian bridge

and the WI-FI zone of the new library from which I've been surfing the web to find the latest news.

Wi-Fi Tower - Bibiloteca Publica - Rio Branco

And, yup, there are two items really worth reporting...

Amazon deforestation in 2009 declines to lowest on record

(06/22/2009) Annual deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon fell below 10,000 square kilometers for the first time since record-keeping began, reported Brazil's Environment Minister Carlos Minc. Yesterday Minc said preliminary data from the country's satellite-based deforestation detection system (DETER) showed that Amazon forest loss between August 2008 and July 2009 would be below 10,000 square kilometers, the lowest level in more than 20 years. Falling commodity prices and government action to crack down on illegal clearing are credited for the decline in deforestation rates.


Brazil to pay farmers $50/month to plant trees in the Amazon

(06/22/2009) Brazil will pay small farmers to plant trees in deforested parts of the Amazon under a plan unveiled Friday by President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.

Brazil will pay small farmers to plant trees in deforested parts of the Amazon under a plan unveiled Friday by President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.

The Green Arch initiative (Arco Verde) will pay farmers up to $51 per month for reforestation of degraded lands in 43 Amazon municipalities where deforestation is an ongoing problem.

"We need to think about how to make those people feel that they will make more money by planting trees than by cutting them down," Lula told Reuters on Friday.


[Note: The payments may seem small but this can be significant in the context of the extreme poverty faced by many who were abandoned in the forests after the rubber boom and who now often struggle to live on less than $2 a day.]






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