Brazils Highway BR-319: The road to the collapse of the Amazon and the violation of indigenous rights

  • Lucas Ferrante Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas da Amazônia (INPA) https://orcid.org/0000-0003-2636-5713
  • Maryane Bento Trindade de Andrade
  • Luciana Leite
  • Carlos Antonio Silva Junior
  • Mendelson Lima
  • Marcondes Geraldo Coelho Junior
  • Eduardo Carvalho da Silva Neto
  • Daniela Campolina
  • Katia Carolino
  • Luisa Maria Diele-Viegas
  • Eder Johnson de Area Leão Pereira
  • Philip Martin Fearnside https://orcid.org/0000-0003-3672-9082
Keywords: climate change, rainforest, deforestation, environmental impact, indigenous peoples

Abstract

One of the greatest threats to the Brazilian Amazon is the reconstruction and paving of the formerly abandoned Highway BR-319, which would link one of the most conserved blocks in the Amazon forest to the “arc of deforestation” on the southern edge of the region where most forest has already been destroyed. BR-319 and its planned side roads would allow the actors and processes from the arc of deforestation to move into vast areas of unprotected rainforest. In the specific case of this highway, a judicial decision that is not subject to further appeal established that environmental studies for the first section of the highway to be reconstructed (“Lot C”) must be carried out before paving. The federal highway department and the “Civil House” of President Bolsonaro’s presidential office ignored this decision and issued a call for bids for the construction work. Due to the current lack of governance in the BR-319 area and the history of deforestation whenever Amazonian highways are built, the decision on whether to suspend the contract for the “Lot C” is critical for the maintenance of both the ecosystem services of the Amazon forest and the way of life of indigenous and riverside people. This decision is expected to be made shortly by a single person.

Published
2021-02-18
How to Cite
Ferrante, L., Bento Trindade de Andrade, M., Leite, L., Antonio Silva Junior, C., Lima, M., Geraldo Coelho Junior, M., Carvalho da Silva Neto, E., Campolina, D., Carolino, K., Maria Diele-Viegas, L., Johnson de Area Leão Pereira, E., & Martin Fearnside, P. (2021). Brazils Highway BR-319: The road to the collapse of the Amazon and the violation of indigenous rights . DIE ERDE – Journal of the Geographical Society of Berlin, 152(1), 65-70. https://doi.org/10.12854/erde-2021-552
Section
Opinion article