The Brazilian Amazon rainforest is burning more than ever this year. The EU is the party responsible for the problem through international trade deals, but an important Tuesday vote could quell the flames.
In the first eight days of September alone, 20,261 fires were recorded, a 385% increase compared to the same period in 2021. On Tuesday, MEPs will vote on new rules to ensure that products sold in the EU do not contribute to deforestation.
Meanwhile, policy officer and deforestation expert at WWF-Belgium, Beatrice Wedeux, said, “People don’t want their consumption to contribute to deforestation or the destruction of savannahs and grasslands. They are calling on MEPs to support a strong law and not to give in to attempts to weaken the text.”
Many of the fires are caused by burning swathes of forest to make spaces for agriculture exploitation. Forest fires increase exposure to the effects of drought, making these green spaces even more vulnerable to fires.
The law would demand that companies ensure products sold in the EU do not come from deforested or degraded land; MEPs are likely to request that the range of products covered is extended (it currently targets coffee, chocolate and beef).
As part of the new regulation, they would also have to verify these goods are manufactured in accordance with human rights conditions in international law and that their production respects the rights of indigenous people.
As per WWF, “In the early summer of this year, several EU Member States drilled so many hotels in the proposal that what remained was more like a Swiss cheese.”
“However, MEPs in the Environment Committee supported a more ambitious text that takes more account of nature, covers more products and increases controls on companies, and also better protects the rights of indigenous and local peoples,” the organisation added.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here