Will loan money really bring sustainable cattle ranching to the Amazon?

BRAZIL - Brazil's second largest exporter of beef has won approval of a controversial loan from the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the private equity lender of the World Bank, according to a report from the Associated Press.
calendar icon 13 March 2007
clock icon 2 minute read
Causes Of Deforestation In the Amazon

Environmentalists say the deal will drive further deforestation in the biologically rich Amazon rainforest. Cattle ranching is responsible for more than half of forest loss in the region.

The $90 million loan will allow the Bertin Group, which generates more than 30,000 jobs in Brazil, to "expand and modernize" its operations throughout the country.

In granting the loan, the IFC acknowledged environmental concerns but said the project is "an opportunity to partner and engage a leading private sector company in tackling the most serious environmental and social issues facing the Brazilian Amazon."

In a statement, IFC claimed the loan will help Bertin "develop a system, the first of its kind in Brazil, to ensure that Bertin’s cattle is source from ranchers that use sustainable practices and do not contribute to increased deforestation of the Amazon. The project will adhere to IFC’s environmental and social performance standards."

IFC maintained that the project will reduce the environmental impact of cattle ranching by requiring Bertin’s cattle suppliers in the Amazon region to "abide by a rigorous list of environmental and social requirements."

“There is a real need to reconcile the economic development of the Amazon with its environmental conservation,” said Atul Mehta, IFC's Director for Latin America and Caribbean Region. “The cattle raising industry is an important component of the economic activity in the Amazon. By engaging with Bertin, IFC is seeking to develop new standards for dealing with some of the environmental and social challenges in this sector.”

Source: Mongabay.com
© 2000 - 2024 - Global Ag Media. All Rights Reserved | No part of this site may be reproduced without permission.