World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


US Giant Accused Over Biofuel ‘Tainted With Indian Blood'

SURVIVAL INTERNATIONAL PRESS RELEASE

November 13, 2012

US Food Giant Accused Over Biofuel ‘Tainted With Indian Blood’

A US food giant has been implicated in a sugarcane scandal in Brazil that has kept an entire indigenous community off its land, polluted streams and inflicted illness and death on Guarani Indians.

Headquartered in the US, global grain trader Bunge is deeply involved in Brazil’s burgeoning biofuels market, and sources sugarcane from farmers who have taken over the ancestral land of the Guarani.

A community of 225 Guarani in the state of Mato Grosso do Sul, whose land was taken from them to make way for the plantations, says the invasion of sugarcane, associated machinery and pesticides has ruined their lives over the past four years.

Two Guarani from Jata Yvary community have already committed suicide this year. The boys, aged 16 and 13, were found hanging from trees. A truck from the plantations used by Bunge also reportedly ran over and killed a man.

Talking to Survival International, the community said, ‘We Guarani don’t want sugarcane planted on our land anymore…it harms our health, including the health of our children, and elderly people, and the poison contaminates the water.’

The Guarani say pesticides sprayed from planes land on their community, and discarded machinery and crops have been left to rot in streams they rely on for water.

In a letter they call for their ‘land to be demarcated…and for white people in the area to be evicted, because with them we don’t have space to hunt and fish, and we can’t practice our traditions. We want to preserve the forest but they are destroying it, and illegally making money from it.’

Brazil’s constitution, and an agreement signed by the authorities and the Guarani, oblige the government to map out and protect all Guarani land. But this program has come practically to a stand-still, and as the Guarani wait for their land to be returned to them, they are seeing it consumed by an ever-advancing wave of sugarcane.

Survival has written to Bunge, but the company was unapologetic, saying it would continue to source sugarcane from this ancestral Guarani land until the Brazilian authorities fully map out the area as indigenous.

Earlier this year, Raizen, a biofuels company set up by Shell and COSAN scrapped controversial plans to source sugarcane from land stolen from the Guarani after a sustained campaign by the Indians and Survival.

Survival International’s Director Stephen Corry said today, ‘Much of Brazil’s biofuel is tainted with Indian blood. Those using it should be aware that their so-called ‘ethical’ choice is contributing to the death and utter destitution of Guarani Indians. Bunge must follow Shell’s lead and leave Guarani land, without hiding behind the excuse of waiting for official land recognition which can take decades.’


Read this online: http://www.survivalinternational.org/news/8812


Survival International helps tribal peoples defend their lives, protect their lands and determine their own futures. Founded 1969.


ENDS


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Afghanistan: UN Welcomes Conclusion Of Presidential Election

Pictured left to right: Jan Kubis, Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Afghanistan, and presidential candidates Dr.Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai, and Dr. Abdullah Abdullah. Photo: Fardin Waezi/UNAMA More>>

ALSO:

UN Rights Chief: Sinking Of Mediterranean Migrant Boat Amounts To Mass Murder

Syrian refugees are rescued in the Mediterranean Sea, but others are not so fortunate. Photo: UNHCR/A. D'Amato More>>

UN: Ban Launches UN Ebola Response Mission

Ban Launches UN Ebola Response Mission; Advance Teams to Arrive in West Africa on Monday More>>

ALSO:

UN: Leonardo Dicaprio New UN Messenger Of Peace

Pictured left to right: United Nations Messenger of Peace, Leonardo DiCaprio and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. UN Photo/Mark Garten More>>

UN: 'Shocked And Saddened' By Vaccination Deaths In Syria

A Syrian boy gets his measles jab in Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan. Photo: UNICEF/Jordan-2013/ Alaa Malhas More>>

UN: Announces Mission To Combat Ebola

Ebola outbreak: a peacekeeper with the UN Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) wears a protective mask while on duty at UN offices in the capital city of Monrovia. UN Photo/Andrey Tsarkov More>>


Syria: Life-Saving Food Aid In Jeopardy For Millions Of Syrians

18 September 2014 – The United Nations World Food Programme ( WFP ) today warned that it is running out of funds to provide food for almost 6 million Syrians receiving its life-saving assistance. More>>

UN Warns: Hundreds Of Yemeni Families In Need Of Aid

Two displaced girls stand in front of the classroom where their family has been living in Aden, Yemen. Photo: UNHCR/P. Rubio Larrauri More>>


Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news