Norway to resume aid to Brazil to protect Amazon rainforest

Norway to resume aid to Brazil to protect Amazon rainforest
Norway will resume funding to Brazil for the protection of the Amazon rainforest following the victory of Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva in the presidential election.
2 min read
Norway will resume funding to protect the Amazon rainforest [Getty]

Norway said on Monday that it would resume sending Amazon protection subsidies to Brazil, which it had halted in 2019 under Jair Bolsonaro, following Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva's election victory.

"We had a good and very close collaboration with the government before Bolsonaro and deforestation in Brazil declined greatly under Lula da Silva's (previous) presidency", Environment Minister Espen Barth Eide told AFP.

"Then we had a head-on collision with Bolsonaro whose approach was diametrically opposed when it came to deforestation".

Norway was the biggest donor for the protection of Amazon rain forest, but like Germany, halted its aid to Brazil in 2019 after Bolsonaro took power.

Under the far-right leader, deforestation of the Amazon accelerated by 70 percent, a level Barth Eide described as "scandalous".

He said some five billion kroner ($483 million) in unused aid was waiting to be disbursed in the Amazon Fund for Forest Conservation and Climate Protection.

"We note that during the campaign he (Lula) emphasised the conservation of the Amazon forest and the protection of the indigenous peoples of the Amazon," Barth Eide told AFP.

Live Story

"This is why we are eager to make contact with his teams, as quickly as possible, to prepare for a resumption of the historically good collaboration between Brazil and Norway".

Lula, who served as president between 2003 and 2011, said after his election victory on Sunday that Brazil was "ready to reclaim its place in the fight against the climate crisis, especially the Amazon."

He vowed to "fight for zero deforestation."