Livelihoods in the REDD?
Edited by Luca Tacconi, Sango Mahanty and Helen Suich
Chapter 4: Diversifying Livelihood Systems, Strengthening Social Networks and Rewarding Environmental Stewardship Among Small-scale Producers in the Brazilian Amazon: Lessons from Proambiente
Wendy-Lin Bartels, Marianne Schmink, Eduardo Amaral Borges, Adair Pereira Duarte and Hilza Domingos Silva dos Santos Arcos INTRODUCTION The Brazilian Amazon, which comprises nine states and covers 5.3 million km2 (Soares et al. 2006), is vulnerable to interactions between economic, ecological and climatological factors that could lead to a 31 per cent reduction of its closed-canopy forest by 2030 (Nepstad et al. 2008). Scenario models predict that the current rapid expansion of mechanized agricultural crops, such as soybeans, and future prospects for obtaining ethanol from sugar cane, will likely induce cattle ranchers to move further into forested areas, increasing pasture land and reducing canopy cover. A subsequent increase in the number of forest fragments and fire sources may then lead to greater emissions of atmospheric aerosols that, in turn, will inhibit rainfall. The outcome of these interactions is a large-scale forest dieback that would potentially release 15–26 petagrams1 of carbon, which could be further exacerbated by extreme climatic events (Soares et al. 2006; Nepstad et al. 2007; Nepstad et al. 2008). Therefore, decisions made over the next few years regarding conservation and development in Brazil may be the last opportunity to avert the predicted advance of significant drying and deforestation that threatens resilience, biodiversity conservation and the provision of ecosystem services within the Amazon (Mahli et al. 2008). 82 TACCONI BOOK final.indb 82 12/11/10 12:00:41 Lessons from Proambiente in the Brazilian Amazon 83 Proambiente is a rural development programme for the Amazon that integrates conservation into the...
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