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London, UK (DEZZ) May 2, 2012 – Lowrisk-sipp-investments.com today released a statement expressing the view that sustainable forestry investments may help Brazil find a solution to the clash between its agricultural sector and its forestry sector. The statement comes after CNN reported that farming activities in the country’s new agricultural frontier, Mato Grosso, have compromised a vast stretch of virgin rain forest.
According to CNN, the battle over land use in Brazil has sparked a significant conflict between environmentalists and farmers. The online news agency explains that forty years ago, pristine forests covered most of the land in Mato Grosso but that the government then encouraged settlers to “slash and burn.”
Since the start of settlement, the conversion of forests into crop fields has made Brazil “one of the world’s major breadbaskets,” as CNN put it. But now, under current laws, from 20 to 80 percent of those forestry lands must be preserved.
CNN says that the progress achieved in Brazil’s environmental efforts may be deemed short-lived if proposed new legislation comes into effect. The new Forest Code currently being debated in Congress aims to ease the limits on deforestation and to extend an amnesty to some loggers who have cut down trees illegally in the past. Under the new code, farmers who have broken the law will not have to pay fines and can make amends for environmental damage they have caused by replanting native trees. Brazilian policy makers plan to pass the law prior to the Rio + 20 UN Conference on Climate Change in June.
CNN further explains that, since 1970, nearly 20 percent of Brazilian forestry cover has been compromised. Only over the last six years has the Brazilian government taken measures to preserve the country’s forests, in the process reducing the rate of deforestation by 80 percent. Environmental activists fear that, if passed, the new legislation will be a huge step back in Brazil’s environmental efforts.
“It’s a setback without precedent after the 23 years of progress we’ve made,” former Environment Minister Marina Silva told CNN.
In its newly-released statement, lowrisk-sipp-investments.com says that forestry investments which leverage the carbon sequestration capacity of standing trees may provide financial incentives that could reduce the practice of slashing trees for the purpose of clearing land for agriculture. The green investments portal explains that forestry offset projects in Brazil can generate compatible revenue from carbon credits and then reinvest the money in replanting new trees. Thus, these investments benefit both the environment and the projects’ bottom line.
In addition, illegal loggers forced under the prospective legislation to replant trees and compensate for past illegal logging practices may find offset projects as a good way of fulfilling their obligation. By replanting trees, they can avoid hefty fines and also earn revenue.
Says Wouter Bakker of Robinia Investments, the company operating lowrisk-sipp-investments.com: “Finding a balance between sectors that have such an acute conflict of interest is a challenging task for any government. On the one hand, providing financial incentives that encourage private investors to keep trees alive will ease much of the tension while on the other hand, domestically-produced carbon credits will provide a solution to businesses and individuals looking to voluntarily neutralise their carbon footprint.”
To learn more about forestry investments, timber trends and market forecasts visit lowrisk-sipp-investments.com.
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