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Latino Daily News

Friday September 10, 2010

Brazil to Spend $163 Million to Save its Atlantic Forest

Brazil plans to spend $162.5 million for the conservation, sustainable use and socio-enviornmental recovery of its Atlantic forest, one of the planet’s most threatened biosystems.  Only 7.5 percent of the Atlantic forest remains in Brazil.

The project is expected to restore degraded areas in Serra do Mar State Park as well as clean hundreds of hectares from non-native plant and animal species. The program will improve urban hubs for 2,400 families and resettle 8,150 families currently living in unregulated or illegal settlements in the Serra do Mar State Park. These families, who currently live in high geo-technical risk areas, will be provided with new housing within the same municipality –an important factor given that practically all are employed in industrial and commercial enterprises nearby.

The Serra do Mar State Park is the largest continuous portion of the protected Atlantic Forest in Brazil. The park is home to half the bird species of the forest and 20 percent of Brazil’s bird species.  The conservation of the Atlantic forest is expected to improve carbon retention, provide better local and regional climate regulation; stabilize rainfall periods and improve the retention of rainwater run-off; as well as protect tree species that are crucial for the survival of the endangered bird species.