Recently the Board of Directors of the World Bank have eventually approved the first-ever Amazon Financial and Environmental Sustainability Program. This project is aiming to provide support for the fiscal reforms that are required. This will aim to promote financial sustainability at the time of integrating forest development and conservation.
Moreover, this environmental sustainability is part of the post-COVID-19 state fiscal recovery plan. In addition, this program is also going to endorse social inclusion through the process of an increased number of families. Although these families are vulnerable, they are protected by the Forest Program of Bosla ranging between 9,600 and 12,000.
The Amazonian states were acutely affected due to the pandemic from the time that the very first case of COVID-19 was registered last year in February in Brazil. The state had even registered an enormous 4,500 deaths so far and it is the 4th in the ranking of death rates across the globe.
Pandemic Stricken Brazilian Environmental Sustainability
The Brazilian state is a witness to a huge economic shock. The World Bank made an estimation of a sharp 5.6% decline in the GDP (Gross Domestic Product) of the state in the year 2020. As a result, there were widespread repercussions on employment, inequality, and poverty.
Wilson M. Lima is the Amazon State Governor. He has recently informed, that they have adopted some measures towards a fiscal adjustment in order to restore and protect fiscal sustainability in the medium and short term. He further stated that the economic shock shelled out by the coronavirus pandemic has added extra issues to the already existing economic problems of the state. Lima continues that they are extremely hopeful that this project will enable them to take positive reformative measures. This is expected to ultimately generate a financial condition to leverage transfers to the civic bodies as well as expand environmental sustainability services.
The Amazonas is the largest state in Brazil. It comprises a quarter of the total Amazon basin along with one-third of the Brazilian part. Amazonas is spread across a landmass of 1.5 million square kilometers that is easily larger than Portugal, Spain, Germany, and France. More than 95% of the actual forest cover is preserved and has the biggest stock of forest carbon among all the subnational jurisdictions worldwide.
The state is the utmost in terms of poverty within Brazil with almost 40% of the entire population residing with less than $5.50 each day, even though it is so rich in natural resources. Furthermore, the annual deforestation has exponentially increased in the Amazonas for the past few years. The deforestation rate in 2014 was 583 square kilometers while in 2019 it was 1434 square kilometers, indicating a 146% spike.
Significance Of The Brazilian Forests In Environmental Sustainability
The Amazon forest maintains a balanced ecosystem that brings adequate rainfall which provides support to hydropower and agriculture. It also brings environmental sustainability in the urban and rural areas in entire South America. Consequently, the forest becomes locally, nationally, and at large, globally, significant that requires serious protection.
The program will strengthen supervision and preliminary warning plans along with combatting forest fires and deforestation. The state can successfully reduce the emissions of greenhouse gases by approximately 11% by decreasing deforestation. Reducing 11% greenhouse gas is the goal set by Brazil in the Paris Agreement.
They also intend to raise rural environmental actions to 2,100 within the next 2 years. Moreover, this will help in improving the land regularization and environmental sustainability systems.
This project also includes the implementation of another program of Forest Concessions under its wings. This program intends to create five hundred green jobs by offering concessions on 60,000 hectares of forestland within 2022. This will integrate Amazon protection with sustainable use and stimulate a positive effect on the state’s economy.
Paloma A. Casero is the current director at the World Bank of the Brazil branch. He stated that the forest plays an important role in the economy and livelihood of the Amazonas. He also added that this pioneering project will reward rural communities who safeguard the forest. Inclusion and environmental sustainability must be prioritized in the post-pandemic world.
World Bank Aids Amazonas
The program will support the pension contribution by reducing the deficit by 11% for 2022. The Amazonas is also guaranteed a staggering $200 million worth loan from IBRD that has a maturity period of 13 years and 3 years grace.
Environment sustainability program goals include:
1: Financial support and transparency through reforms including pensions and medium-term financial responsibility law;
2: Implementing institutional reforms in order to ensure an effective program of public investment. This will surely act as the foundation for climate-related investment planning and public policy resolutions;
3: Adoption of institutional and legal reforms to prevent, subdue, and regulate illegal deforestation and forest fires;
4: Establishing stringent enforcement of Central Forest Code along with backing landholders to follow conservation regulation in their lands;
5: Place strict payment procedures in place for environmental service methods that share profits of advanced sustainability and conservation of forest with local communities. They also compensate vulnerable families for improving environmental services of the forest;
6: Promoting gender equality.
Ecologically Ticked Boxes
The World Bank program to financially back Amazonas is a result of the strong collaboration among national and subnational governments to execute environmental sustainability. This initiative will protect globally significant biodiversity and implement policies to foster land use and restoration of native vegetation cover