The vice president of Brazil justifies the absence of Jair Bolsonaro at COP26: "everyone is going to throw stones at him"

The president of Brazil, Jair Bolsonaro will not attend the climate change summit of the UN (COP 26), which will begin on Sunday in Scotland, because “everyone was going to throw rocks at him”, justified Vice President Hamilton Mourao today. Instead the president will move to northern Italy where he will receive honorary citizenship in the town of origin of his ancestors. The decision to award a distinction to the Brazilian president was repudiated by the anti-mafia association Libera, which points to Bolsonaro for “a multiplicity of acts considered contrary to human and environmental rights”.

“The president suffers a series of environmental criticisms. Then he would go to a place where everyone is going to throw stones at him.. Likewise, there is a robust team that will carry out the negotiation, “said Mourao, who also chairs the National Council for the Legal Amazon but will not attend the climate summit in which at least 14 world leaders will participate, including Presidents Joe Biden and Emmanuel Macron. The head of the Brazilian delegation at COP26 in Glasgow is the Minister of the Environment, Joaquim Leite, accompanied by the Minister of Mines and Energy, Bento Albuquerque, and the President of the Central Bank, Roberto Campos Neto.

Outrage by the citizenship of honor to Bolsonaro

Bolsonaro traveled to Rome to participate in the G20 summit and on Monday he will move to northern Italy to visit the land of his ancestors where He will receive honorary citizenship from Anguillara Veneta, the small town of 4,000 inhabitants in the Veneto region, stronghold of the far-right Liga.

The award was cause of outrage for the anti-mafia association Libera. “We received this news with bewilderment and we remember that the political action of the president Bolsonaro is characterized by a multiplicity of acts considered contrary to human rights and environmental, implementing a genocidal policy against the population, with contempt and offenses against women and homosexuals, actions of deforestation and violations against indigenous populations residents in Amazonian areas“Libera protested in a tweet.

According to Mourao, the Bolsonaro Executive is criticized for political, economic and environmental reasons. “Most of the people who are really more environmentally conscious are on the left., so there is embedded political criticism. And there is the economic issue: always a search for a barrier in relation to the strength of our agribusiness, that is, it comes from the deforested area of ​​the Amazon, which is not a reality, “he said.

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Bolsonaro accumulates criticism from the international community for his environmental management in the Amazon. Brazil hosts a 60 percent of the Amazon rainforest and the administration of the current president is singled out for carrying out actions that make it difficult to monitor environmental crimes. The Brazilian president also denies deforestation in the country and on other occasions has come to assure that “the forests do not catch fire” and that he suffers “unjustified attacks.”

However, according to a report by the NGO group Climate Observatory, the carbon dioxide emissions from Brazil increased 9.5 percent y-o-y in 2020 despite the fact that the world average had a 7 percent drop due to the reduction in transport and industrial production due to the coronavirus pandemic. It is the highest level registered in the country in the last 14 years. The country pledged to cut 43 percent of greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 in the Paris Agreement.

“Destroyers of the jungle”

According to the group of environmental organizations, the exception in the South American giant was due to “increased deforestation last year, especially in the Amazon, which put Brazil at the opposite end of the planet.”

“Brazil achieved the feat of being perhaps the only major emitter that increased pollution in the first year of the pandemic. The data confirm that destroyers of the jungle, driven by the anti-environmental policy of Jair Bolsonaro, did not stay working at home “, assured Marcio Astrini of the Climate Observatory.

Since Bolsonaro became president in January 2019, the Amazon has lost some 10,000 km² of forest per year, compared to about 6,500 km² per year in the previous decade. Brazilian authorities confirmed that during COP26 Brazil will sign an international agreement considered key in the preservation of forests. The Forest Deal is one of the major points of the climate summit to be held in Glasgow, Scotland, from October 31 to November 12.

“We sent a formal communication to the promoters of the initiative, confirming our adherence. We are once again showing the new Brazilian position of commitment to sustainable development issues and specifically on climate change,” said Paulino Franco de Carvalho Neto, Secretary of Policies Multilaterals of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. “Brazil has the expectation that the world’s largest economies will also do their part, especially in reducing the use of fossil fuels, the main cause of climate warming,” he added.

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