Why Brazil’s new President is good news for the world, especially environment lovers.
Conservation of Brazil’s Amazon Rainforest has long been a priority of Lula’s. His first two terms saw a more than 70 percent drop in the rate of deforestation there, and his government pushed for wealthier countries to fund climate mitigation efforts. After deforestation reached a fifteen-year high under Bolsonaro, many are hoping that a third Lula administration will turn it around.
Leftist leader Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva was sworn in as president of Brazil on Sunday under tightened security in the capital Brasilia. In his previous years as Workers Party (PT) president from 2003-2010, the former union leader lifted millions of Brazilians from poverty during a commodity boom that buoyed the economy. Lula won the presidential election by beating Jair Bolsonaro in October, vowing to safeguard Amazon and defend democracy.
Lula has said his priorities are fighting poverty, and investing in education and health. He has also said he will bring illegal deforestation of the Amazon to a halt.
He then told supporters that Brazil doesn't need to deforest the Amazon rainforest for agriculture — a key criticism of Bolsonaro's tenure.
Conservation of Brazil’s Amazon Rainforest has long been a priority of Lula’s. His first two terms saw a more than 70 percent drop in the rate of deforestation there, and his government pushed for wealthier countries to fund climate mitigation efforts. After deforestation reached a fifteen-year high under Bolsonaro, environmentalists are hoping that a third Lula administration will turn it around.
The Amazon rainforest, which covers parts of several nations in South America, is crucial for absorbing large amounts of carbon dioxide. The rainforest is also one of the most biodiverse places on the planet and home to millions of Brazilians
Jair Bolsonaro (former capitalist Brazil Prez) pushed the development of the Amazon rainforest, both in his actions and rhetoric, and the deforested area in the rainforest reached a 15-year high from August 2020 to July 2021, according to official figures
Brazil's President-elect Luiz Inacio Lula sa Silva appointed a final set of ministers to his cabinet , naming Marina Silva as the next minister of environment.
Silva is one of the best known environmentalists in the country and a staunch defender of protecting the Amazon rainforest.
She served as the environment minister of the country when Lula won the presidency for the first time in 2003.
As an environment minister, she oversaw the creation of dozens of conservation areas at the rainforest, with deforestation rates dropping dramatically.
Silva, however, resigned in 2008 over a difference with her boss, who began catering to agribusiness interests. The green activist was born in the Amazon and worked as a rubber tapper as an adolescent.
She was already seen as one of the top contenders for the job and attended the UN climate conference in Egypt in October with Lula, who promised to cheer crowds "zero deforestation" in the Amazon by 2030.
In all, Lula has appointed 11 women to his proposed cabinet, more than any previous administration. He named Sonia Guajajara, an Indigenous woman, as Brazil's first minister of Indigenous peoples.
He also named Carlos Favaro, a soybean producer, as agriculture minister, and Senator Simone Tebet, a former rival who became an ally during the electoral campaign, as planning and budget minister. This cabinet is something which we had seen in Canada also. Hopefully, the same orchestration will be there in India’s cabinet as well.
President Jair Bolsonaro’s dismantling of Amazon rainforest protections and mismanagement of the Covid-19 pandemic has done profound damage to Brazil’s international image—and, more important, to human rights. President-elect Lula needs to hit the global reset button fast.
Prez - Short form for president
Staunch - believing in somebody/something or supporting somebody/something very strongly; loyal
Buoyed - to keep somebody happy and confident
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