Search

 

Cablegate: Brazil-Deforestation: Great Concern but Little Assistance,

VZCZCXRO9334
RR RUEHAST RUEHHM RUEHLN RUEHMA RUEHPB RUEHPOD RUEHTM
DE RUEHBR #1377/01 2940937
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 200937Z OCT 08
FM AMEMBASSY BRASILIA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 2694
INFO RUEHSO/AMCONSUL SAO PAULO 2941
RUEHRI/AMCONSUL RIO DE JANEIRO 6769
RUEHRG/AMCONSUL RECIFE 8603
RUEHRC/DEPT OF AGRICULTURE WASHDC
RUEHNY/AMEMBASSY OSLO 0046
RUEHZN/ENVIRONMENT SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY COLLECTIVE

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 03 BRASILIA 001377

SENSITIVE

SIPDIS

DEPT FOR OES/PCI - L.SPERLING
DEPT FOR OES/ENCR - S.CASWELL AND C.KARR-COLQUE
DEPT FOR OES/EGC - D.NELSON AND T.TALLEY

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: SENV EAID KGHG EFIN NO BR
SUBJECT: BRAZIL-DEFORESTATION: GREAT CONCERN BUT LITTLE ASSISTANCE,
WITH FEW NOTABLE EXCEPTIONS

REF: BRASILIA 1159

BRASILIA 00001377 001.2 OF 003


1. (U) THIS CABLE IS SENSITIVE BUT UNCLASSIFIED AND NOT FOR
INTERNET DISTRIBUTION.

2. (SBU) SUMMARY. At a September 8 meeting, representatives of key
European and Asia-Pacific countries outlined their current and
planned financial and technical assistance to Brazil to help combat
deforestation. All of the participants expressed concern over
climate change, which in the case of Brazil means deforestation.
Most of the participants said their countries viewed Brazil as a
middle-income country that does not require much, if any, financial
assistance for dealing with deforestation. Norway stood apart; it
has announced plans to provide up to USD 1 billion to help Brazil
reduce deforestation through 2015. On a much smaller scale,
Germany, the European Commission, France, Japan and the United
Kingdom have modest assistance programs or activities concerning
deforestation. END SUMMARY

3. (SBU) At a luncheon meeting hosted by Post's Deputy Chief of
Mission on September 8, representatives of Australia, Canada,
Denmark, European Commission, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the
Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and
the United Kingdom met to exchange information on their respective
efforts to assist Brazil in combating deforestation. All of the
representatives were keenly interested in the topic of climate
change. In the case of Brazil, the vast majority of greenhouse gas
emissions are due to deforestation. There was significant interest
in the recently established Amazon Fund (REFTEL), which the
Government of Brazil (GOB) intends to use to support efforts to
reduce deforestation. Highlights of the meeting include the
following:

NORWAY
------

4. (SBU) Norway, at the time, was likely to make significant
donations to the Amazon Fund as long as they learned more about how
it would operate and how the avoided amount of emissions and
deforestation reduction would be calculated and verified. (NOTE:
During Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg's visit to Brazil,
a week later, on September 16, he announced that Norway had made the
first donations to the Amazon Fund. An initial USD 20 million
deposit plus another USD 120 million within the next 12 months was
promised, with additional sums possible as long as Brazil keeps
reducing its deforestation rate. Norway also offered to donate a
total of up to USD 1 billion by 2015. Brazilian Minister of
Environment Carlos Minc announced that disbursals from the Amazon
Fund will be tied to the amount of deforestation that is avoided.
Thus, a decline in the deforestation rate would permit more money to
be disbursed, but an increase would reduce the amount available for
disbursal. END NOTE)

EUROPEAN COMMISSION (EC)
------------------------

5. (SBU) A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) is in effect between
GOB and the EC and climate change is one of the areas of cooperation
included in the MOU. Currently, there are five ongoing projects in
the Amazon region involving total grants of around 30 million Euros.
These projects are implemented through non-governmental
organizations (NGOs). Moreover, the EC has funding available
(approximately 18.3 Euros) for new projects in the areas of
protected areas, monitoring of forests, and climate change. (NOTE:
Six million Euros will be used for a project to protect the area
alongside north-south highway BR-163 which runs through the Amazon
Forest. END NOTE.)

UNITED KINGDOM
--------------

6. (SBU) The United Kingdom has a variety of projects with funding
of an estimated 1 million pounds, which are implemented through
NGOs. These projects focus on forest fire, law enforcement, and
compliance with the law requiring landowners in the Amazon to
preserve 80 percent of their land as forests. Also, the United
Kingdom is preparing a report called the "Economics of Climate
Change in Brazil," which are projections of the impact of climate
change over for the next 40 years. A first draft should be
available in June of 2009. Further, the United Kingdom is working

BRASILIA 00001377 002.2 OF 003


with the Brazilian Space Research Institute (INPE) on a satellite to
be launched in 2010 with a high definition camera developed by the
UK for better monitoring deforestation.

GERMANY
-------

7. (SBU) Germany through its assistance agency, KFW, has
contributed 360 million Euros on sustainable forestry activities,
protection of indigenous reservations, and land use planning and
regulation. Germany is active with projects in the Amazon and also
in the Atlantic Forest regions of Brazil. Germany sees the new
Amazon Fund as an interesting mechanism, but wants to learn more
about it before deciding to make a contribution. Germany is about
to launch a research initiative in the Amazon, including
construction of very tall towers to monitor release and absorption
of gases in the rainforest.

FRANCE
------

8. (SBU) France said it contributed to environmental matters in
Brazil through the Global Environmental Fund (GEF), and its
development agency had provided modest assistance. It has a small
grant of about 1.5 million Euros, which it is implementing through
NGOs, for projects near the Brazilian-French Guiana border. Also,
France provides Brazil with access to information from the SPOT
satellite.

JAPAN
-----

9. (SBU) Japan has various small environmental projects in various
states within Brazil that range from environmental educational
programs to technical cooperation on Amazon Forest monitoring using
images captured by Japanese satellites systems. Brazil has 24 Clean
Development Mechanism (CDM) projects approved by the Japanese
Government and seven projects totaling USD 2.37 million that provide
financial assistance through the International Tropical Timber
Organization (ITTO). The Japanese representative emphasized that
the three main fields of cooperation are: Amazon Forest
conservation; preservation of other ecosystems besides the Amazon;
and environment improvement in urban cities. They are also
interested in learning more about the Amazon Fund mechanism.

CANADA
------

10. (SBU) Canada and Brazil have signed an agreement on sustainable
forest management. Canada will provide some modest funding to
implement the agreement.

ITALY
-----

11. (SBU) Italy has an ongoing cooperation with the Brazilian
environmental agency of combating forest fire in the Amazon region.
It also plans to provide collaboration on the environment pursuant
to a new science and research agreement. The Italian have a program
of collaboration with Brazil on fire prevention and combat at State
and Federal levels that is comprehensive and well-regarded.

OTHER COUNTRIES
-------------------------

12. (SBU) With Brazil's improving economic situation it is
generally viewed as becoming a middle-income country. Thus, Sweden,
Denmark, the Netherlands, and Spain have terminated or are ending
their financial assistance to Brazil and shifting their financial
assistance to poorer, needier countries. Nonetheless, Sweden and
Denmark are studying the Amazon Fund with a view of possibly making
contributions in the future. Australia and New Zealand have been
more focused on the Pacific and have not had any significant
programs concerning deforestation in Brazil.

COMMENT
-------

13. (SBU) The intense interest in climate change and deforestation
has not translated into large assistance programs for Brazil. The

BRASILIA 00001377 003.2 OF 003


one notable exception is Norway with its decision to finance the
Amazon Fund to the tune of about USD one billion over the next seven
years. The developed countries do have a number of small or modest
programs. Interestingly, these programs are almost universally
implemented through NGOs. Further, many developed countries have
already "graduated" Brazil from their assistance programs and
shifted their focus to poorer countries. Given Brazil's opposition
to including forests in carbon credit programs, it appears that
Brazil will need to look primarily to its own resources - rather
than international funds - to finance its efforts to control
deforestation.

SOBEL

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Werewolf: Gordon Campbell On North Korea, Neo-Nazism, And Milo

With a bit of luck the planet won’t be devastated by nuclear war in the next few days. US President Donald Trump will have begun to fixate on some other way to gratify his self-esteem – maybe by invading Venezuela or starting a war with Iran. More>>

Victory Declared: New Stabilisation Funding From NZ As Mosul Is Retaken

New Zealand has congratulated the Iraqi government on the successful liberation of Mosul from ISIS after a long and hard-fought campaign. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Current US Moves Against North Korea

If Martians visited early last week, they’d probably be scratching their heads as to why North Korea was being treated as a potential trigger for global conflict... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Lessons From Corbyn’s Campaign

Leaving partisan politics aside – and ignoring Jeremy Corbyn’s sensational election campaign for a moment – it has to be said that Britain is now really up shit creek... More>>

ALSO:

Another US Court: Fourth Circuit Rules Muslim Ban Discriminatory

ACLU: Step by step, point by point, the court laid out what has been clear from the start: The president promised to ban Muslims from the United States, and his executive orders are an attempt to do just that. More>>

ALSO: