Brazil’s influence needs questioning



Your moving report from Marabá (Death in the forest, 29 September) needs to be read with your story the previous day (Bolivia halts Amazon road project after violent protests, 28 September) to appreciate the big picture of Brazil’s influence in the Amazon.

The controversial road through the Sécure natural park and indigenous reserve in Bolivia is, as your report says, only one of many infrastructure projects promoted by Brazil in South America, including the “inter-oceanic highways” cutting through the Amazon from Brazil to the Pacific coast via Peru and Bolivia. The main purpose of the highways is to provide a faster route for Brazilian soya and beef to Asian markets, just as the Cachuela Esperanza dam proposed for northern Bolivia is designed mainly to filter out sediment to improve the performance of Brazil’s downstream hydroelectric plants, at a heavy cost to local Bolivian farmers.

While Brazil has every right to promote economic development within and beyond its borders, this model needs more questioning. Do such projects benefit all Brazilians, or an elite? Who do they benefit in neighbouring countries such as Bolivia and Peru? The story of Marabá illustrates the violence that such projects generate, and the fact that the victims are vulnerable communities and environmental activists. Finally, in a context of climate change, is this development sustainable?

Former Brazilian president Lula da Silva was an important protector of Bolivia’s Evo Morales, and if it is true that President Ollanta Humala in Peru owes his recent narrow victory to Brazilian support, questions about the export of the “Brazilian model” to the rest of the region become all the more urgent.

Author: Francis McDonagh
Source: The Guardian
Original: http://goo.gl/GYf3b


FOLLOW US / SIGA-NOS:
              

Leave a Reply / Deixe um comentário

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: