Misguided policy may jeopardize a diverse south brazilian environmental protection area

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The Devonian Escarpment (DEEPA), located in the south of Brazil, represents an important area of environmental preservation composed by grasslands, gallery forests, as well as rock outcrops and archaeological sites. A law project (LP 527/2016), which suggests a reduction of the DEEPA area in approximately 70% of its original area (from 393,579 to 125,895 ha), is currently being processed in the Paraná State House of Representatives. Such reduction seems to be related to economic interests (mainly agriculture and mining) in the state of Paraná. If approved, LP 527/2016 will allow farmers to deliberately expand their activities, with the suppression of natural forest as main consequence. Additionally, loss of faunal diversity, contamination of water and soils, and alteration in nutrient cycles are expected, due the intensive use of agrochemicals. In addition to the direct environmental consequences, we expect the disappearance of areas of high geological interest, reducing local geodiversity, as well as substantial economic losses with ecotourism. Brazil is a signatory to the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity, where it undertakes to develop strategies to prevent biodiversity loss and ecosystem degradation by 2020. An approval of the LP would be contradictory, considering that there are few natural vegetation areas in this region of the country. We emphasize that the proposal of such projects goes against the sustainability in the country and disregard the scientific knowledge generated until then. Thus, it is necessary to develop regional and federal political objectives that guarantee economic development in a balanced way, considering the local bio and geodiversity, not the proposal of mechanisms that destroy them.




Alves, G. H. Z., Santos, R. da S., Figueiredo, B. R. S., Manetta, G. I., Message, H. J., Pazianoto, L. H. R., … Do Couto, E. V. (2019). Misguided policy may jeopardize a diverse south brazilian environmental protection area. Biota Neotropica, 19(1). https://doi.org/10.1590/1676-0611-BN-2018-0574

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