Big World Bank loan to Brazil stirs debate
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Granting its largest loan ever for Brazil, the World Bank this month extended a US$1.3 billion credit to the country with the express objective of making environmental considerations a part of development initiatives.
Called the “First Programmatic Development Policy Loan for Sustainable Environmental Management,” the credit would on paper seem a welcome sight for environmental advocates. But that hasn’t been the reality.
Green groups and social-rights organizations have panned the loan, questioning the seriousness of bringing sustainability to large-scale dam construction and other projects that by definition damage the environment.
The World Bank said in a written statement that the credit will “integrate sustainability concerns in the development agenda of key sectors such as forest management, water and renewable energy.... and will integrate Brazil’s climate change agenda across sectors.”