Jul 19, 2019 | Updated: 08:51 AM EDT

Brazil Looking For Private Company To Monitor Deforestation In Amazon Rainforest

May 09, 2017 12:53 AM EDT

The Amazon rainforest is seen near construction of the Belo Monte dam complex in the Amazon basin on June 15, 2012 near Altamira, Brazil.
(Photo : Mario Tama/Getty Images)

The government of Brazil is now looking for a private firm that would help monitor the deforestation in the Amazon rainforest. This major and controversial proposal was the reason behind the termination of one of the top scientists in the country's Ministry of the Environment.

In an article published in Science Mag, Tasso Azevedo, the coordinator of the Greenhouse Gas Emission Estimate System and Observatorio do Clima said that Brazil's proposal to lend the observation of the Amazon rainforest to a company is astonishing. "This is a surprise for everyone [as this is some] crazy stuff," the former head of the Brazilian Forest Service said.

The ministry has relied on the National Institute of Space Research (NISR) to observe and analyze the land cover changes in the Amazon Rainforest since 1988. The large rainforest in Brazil is known for holding the world's largest intact swaths of forest.

In an article published by Bioethics.org, there have been various ways to combat the deforestation of the Amazon Rainforest as there has been the focus of harmful interest due to its rich resources. This is also Brazil's largest region of rich biodiversity and shaping regional climate.

The government clarified that the NISR would still continue to monitor the Amazon rainforest. However, researchers are worried that the $25 million annual contract will result in important duplication of effort, a waste of scarce resources, possible confusion over deforestation rates and create an apparent conflict of interest for the government and the ministry.

In a statement by the ministry, they said that the purpose of looking for a company to watch over the deforestation of the Amazon Rainforest is to add technology that is not available in INPE like the radar imagery. INPE would also continue to minor and estimate deforestation in the Amazon.

Raoni Rajao, a social scientist at the Federal University of Minas Gerais said that the proposal by the Brazil's government is just a waste of money. He said that the bid request for the Amazon Rainforest would just replicate.

Currently, Rajao created an online petition to ask the government to cancel the request of having a company to watch over the Amazon Rainforest. He also said that this will cause a conflict of interests as Brazil's government might just look at the numbers of the company and not their intention for the rainforest.

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