Between June 2000 and June 2008, more than 150,000 square kilometers of
rainforest were cleared in the Brazilian Amazon. While deforestation rates have
slowed since 2004, forest loss is expected to continue for the foreseeable
future. Here mongabay.com takes a look at past, current and potential future
drivers of deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon.
Past drivers of deforestation in the Amazon
Most deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon has occurred since the late 1960s
when the Brazil's military government began to sponsor large-scale development
programs to promote colonization in the region. The plan, which sought to both
offer economic opportunities for landless poor from crowded parts of the country
and establish a national presence in the vast and sparsely populate interior,
offered subsidized loans to settlers and ranchers, and funded ambitious highway
projects like the Trans-Amazonian highway. While the Trans-Amazonian ...