More than 3,660 indigenous people are infected, with many elders dead. Analysts suggest the rising toll may be driven by deep poverty, and the undermining of traditional cultures and overall health by modern intrusions.
An exclusive study shows that 114 properties have been certified inside indigenous territories awaiting demarcation in the Brazilian Amazon, spurred in large part by a recent statute that leaves these reserves unprotected from such illegal land grabs.
Land grabbers, landed estate owners and even oil companies stand to benefit from a new guideline released by FUNAI, the federal indigenous affairs agency, which opens up 237 indigenous territories in Brazil for sale, subdivision and speculation.
In recent years, five of the most powerful international banks and investment funds have financed oil exploration in the region where the Amazon River begins. These business ventures are impacting indigenous communities and countless species of fauna and flora.
Forest peoples in the Brazilian Amazon rely on their elders as key decision makers and culture keepers; COVID-19 is already killing indigenous elders at a high rate. All fear worse lies ahead.
A cattle farmer in Tefé, Brazil, has turned his ranch into a new standard for cattle raising in the forest. It’s a more productive and more profitable system that eliminates the need for cutting down forest to open new pastureland.
Global outrage at Environment Minister Ricardo Salles caught on video saying "run the cattle herd" through the Amazon, "changing all the rules and simplifying standards" while public distracted by pandemic.
A new study shows taxpayer money is helping to prop up the beef industry in Brazil, one of the primary drivers of deforestation in the country. For every dollar of tax revenue collected from the industry, only 20 cents effectively goes to society — the rest goes back to producers in the form of incentives, easy credit, and even debt forgiveness.
A bill in Congress on the verge of passage this week would allow land grabbers to self-declare their ownership of government land, ultimately converting vast stretches of Amazon rainforest to cattle ranches.
Some 600 indigenous people have seen their crops die due to the expansion of agribusiness in the state of Pará, Brazil. The streams used by the Munduruku have also been damaged, if not dried up.
Four Alter do Châo volunteer firefighters were charged last year with setting Amazon fires; the police lack evidence, while locals say the real suspects — landgrabbers — are likely still on the loose.
A sweeping policy change by the Bolsonaro government opens unregistered ancestral indigenous lands to landgrabbers, loggers, ranchers, and soy growers, with huge risk for the Amazon.
One of the Amazon’s most deforested regions, Lábrea, in Brazil, is remote, poorly policed and suffering from a land tenure crisis. As a result, land grabbing, illegal logging and murder are routine.
Some 400 indigenous people displaced from an informal settlement in Manaus have struggled to make a living amid scarce jobs and limited income sources during the COVID-19 crisis. The capital of Amazonas state, Manaus accounts for Brazil’s fourth-highest number of deaths due to COVID-19; authorities warn that the state’s health system is close to its limit.
Huge swaths of Brazil’s Amazon rainforest are drier than usual after a rainy season with rainfall index well below historical levels, raising concerns about a further spike in wildfires and deforestation as the dry season approaches.
Brazil’s environmental agency IBAMA has stepped up efforts to fight environmental crimes during the COVID-19 crisis. But the fate of these operations is now uncertain, following the firing of IBAMA’s enforcement director.
Environmental degradation has already triggered disease outbreaks in Brazil. The risk of a new emergent zoonotic disease arising there, like COVID-19, is intensified by Bolsonaro’s forest policies.
Invasions of indigenous reserves continue to escalate in the Brazilian Amazon amid the rapid spread of COVID-19 throughout the country, exposing how indigenous people are vulnerable to increased violence and infection amid a reduction in environmental oversight.
A court in Brazil has granted the Kinja indigenous people an unprecedented right of reply to racist invective, in a move that legal experts say could be a game changer against rising discrimination by President Jair Bolsonaro’s government.
Zezico Rodrigues Guajarara, a teacher from the Arariboia indigenous reserve in Maranhão state, was found shot dead on March 31. He is the fifth Guajarara leader to be killed since November in the lawless frontier region dominated by powerful landowners and logging mafias.
A 20-year-old Kokama indigenous woman in northern Amazonas state tested positive for COVID-19, the first case among indigenous people in Brazil. Experts fear the spread of the pandemic and its effects for native people, calling for urgent action from the government.
The murder of Sister Dorothy in 2005, and resulting international outrage, helped curb violence in Brazil for a time, but crimes against landless peasants and activists are on the rise.
Nearly 4,000 requests have been submitted for mining-related activities on 31 indigenous reserves and 17 protected areas in Brazil, according to recently obtained data from the nongovernmental Socio-Environmental Institute (ISA) and the National Mining Agency.
The construction of the controversial Belo Monte hydroelectric dam in the Brazilian Amazon is the narrative engine that drives Sequestrada, the first full-length film by U.S. cinematographer and sociologist Sabrina McCormick.
‘Multinationals have cut the veins of our mother Earth,’ warned Pope Francis, urging conservation of the rapidly vanishing Amazon — but the world’s media barely took notice.
Legislation would open indigenous reserves in Amazon and across Brazil to commercial mining, oil and gas exploration, ranching, agribusiness, new dams and tourism.
An intensification in fires, coupled with increasing deforestation and worsening climate change, could rapidly shift the Amazon toward being a carbon source by 2050.
A degraded secondary forest in Brazil stores carbon at only twice the rate of primary forest, compared to up to 11 times elsewhere; scientists could be overestimating Amazon carbon storage capacity.
Tech giant Microsoft says it will go “carbon negative” by 2030; to get there, it will rely on Pachama, a startup using LIDAR and artificial intelligence to truthfully track forest carbon storage projects.
In an exclusive interview with Mongabay, Marcelino Guedes, a researcher at Brazil’s Amapá Federal University, talks about how important the management of traditional knowledge is for strengthening the forest economy in Brazil to overcome the paradigm that sees standing forest as an enemy of development.
- ‘Betting on impunity’: Brazilian Amazon under attack despite logging crackdown
- Indonesia struggles to restore peatlands as fires strangle national parks
- Marijuana cultivation whittling away Madagascar’s largest connected forest
- Illegal logging ‘mafia’ stripping hornbill habitat in Northeast India
- Game changer? Antarctic ice melt related to tropical weather shifts: Study
- Dorsal de Nasca: Peru pledges to create a huge new marine reserve
- Science-backed policy boosts critically endangered Nassau grouper
- Vanishing sea ice in the Arctic could shake up seabird migrations
- Discovery of fish never recorded in the Amazon shows richness of Brazil’s Calha Norte
- Brazil’s indigenous hit especially hard by COVID-19: why so vulnerable?
- World’s top tapir expert prepares for unprecedented Amazon mission
- 38 endangered Brazilian tree species legally traded, poorly tracked: Study
Land rights and extractives
- Cook Islands to grant seabed mining exploration licenses within a year
- Deep-sea mining: An environmental solution or impending catastrophe?
- Locals stage latest fight against PNG mine dumping waste into sea
- Mining company pressing to enter Ecuador’s Los Cedros Protected Forest
- In Philippines’ Palawan, top cop linked to assault on environmental officer
- Deaths, arrests and protests as Philippines re-emerges from lockdown
- In Brazil, COVID-19 outbreak paves way for invasion of indigenous lands
- On anniversary of nun’s murder Amazon land rights activists at high risk
Indonesias forest guardians
- Reforesting a village in Indonesia, one batch of gourmet beans at a time
- Restoring Sumatra’s Leuser Ecosystem, one small farm at a time
- Indigenous Iban community defends rainforests, but awaits lands rights recognition
- On the island of Java, a social forestry scheme creates jobs at home
- Failure in conservation projects: Everyone experiences it, few record it
- On a wing and a prayer? Evidence for ways to conserve bats (commentary)
- Audio: The sounds of a rare New Zealand bird reintroduced to its native habitat
- Eavesdrop on forest sounds to effectively monitor biodiversity, researchers say
Southeast asian infrastructure
- Experts see environmental, social fallout in Indonesia’s infrastructure push
- Bornean farmers and fishers brace as a new port opens in their midst
- Indonesian levee project serves industry over community, study says
- Forest clearing proceeds for dam in Sumatra despite locals’ land claims