English Translation of Petition to Say No to the Brazil Merger of the Ministry of Environment with the Ministry of Agriculture


Translation of the petition

No to the merger of the Ministry of Environment with the Ministry of Agriculture.

To: The Federal Government of Brazil, The Federal Supreme Court, The Public Prosecutor’s Office, The Chamber of Deputies of Brazil, The President-elect Jair Messias Bolsonaro, Deputy Antonio Hamilton Martins Mourão and economist Paulo Roberto Nunes Guedes.

The president-elect said in a press interview at his home on 10/24/2018, that he could review the plans for the merger of the ministry of environment with that of agriculture, after saying:

”I am a person who is open to dialogue. It could be that we do not proceed with this proposal. I want what’s best for the agrobusiness and for the environment.”

As he is open to dialogue, we listed some reasons for not merging these two ministries:

1) The Ministry of the Environment (MMA) has as its mission to promote the adoption of principles and strategies to increase knowledge, protection and recovery of the environment, the sustainable use of natural resources, valorization of environmental services and integration of sustainable development in the formulation and implementation of public policies at all levels and instances of government and society, proving to be an extremely strategic ministry for the preservation and development of our country.

2) Take into account Bolsonaro’s quote ”I think it is a very heavy ministry, the environmental ministry would be overwhelmed to be accumulated by the ministry of agriculture, the country is continental, 8 million square kilometers” in fact it is extremely difficult to take care of such a large area, so it is unfeasible to include it within another ministry.

3) Take into consideration the programs that this ministry has already elaborated such as: Plan of Action for Prevention and Control of Deforestation in the Legal Amazon (PPCDAm), which promoted an 84% reduction in deforestation in 2012 compared to 2004, the year of its implementation , the Action Plan for Prevention and Control of Deforestation and Burning in the Cerrado (PPCerrado) that protects our second largest biome.

4) Remember that the deficit in the welfare budget can not be a reason for the environmental degradation of our country.

5) Thanks to environmental policies, Brazil was able to reduce 76.7% of CO² emissions in the land use and forest sector between 2005 and 2010.

6) Remember that Brazil has more than 100,000 species of invertebrates and about 8,200 vertebrates that need to be protected.

7) Remember that Brazil has the world’s largest biodiversity, with 41,000 cataloged species, this biodiversity must be protected for economic and scientific development.

8) Remember that the budget of the Ministry of the Environment (MMA) with the expenses for the implementation of public policies in 2017 was R$ 1,043.4 million (USD 280 mln), when compared to the deficit of the social security programs of 2019 of R$ 218 billion (USD 56 bln)Therefore, it would not be fair for this ministry to be reduced to control public accounts.

9) There was no plebiscite to consult the population on this change.