Paved road to speed exports... and deforestation?


Amazon deforestation in Brazil has reportedly slowed for nearly a decade, thanks mainly to a government campaign launched in 2004 to boost forest monitoring and enforcement. This, however, is not evident in the woodlands along BR-163, a major road being paved in the eastern portion of the rainforest. Like many Amazon routes, in fact, BR-163 has become a conduit for illegal settlers and loggers despite government pledges to prevent deforestation along the roadway corridor. The 1,174-kilometer (729-mile) stretch of BR-163 now being paved runs north from Mato Grosso state to the Amazon port of Santarém. In doing so, it cuts north through Pará state, considered the epicenter of land grabs and illegal logging in the Brazilian Amazon. The project’s main... [Log in to read more]

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