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Brazil's leader vetoes portions of new Amazon rainforest law

Dilma Rousseff sends back parts of congressional bill that loosened country's protection of forest

Source:  Copyright 2012, Guardian
Date:  May 25, 2012
Original URL: Status ONLINE

Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff has used veto powers to send back parts of a congressional bill that loosened the country's benchmark law protecting the Amazon rainforest in a move the government said would prevent increased deforestation.

Environmental activists were not satisfied because they had called for a veto of the entire bill, known as the forest code, saying any weakening of the law would put the world's largest rainforest at risk. Government officials said the partial veto went far enough to keep Brazil on track in its efforts to quell the destruction of the Amazon and other biomes.

"It's the code of those who believe it's possible to produce food and preserve the environment," agriculture minister Jorge Ribeiro Mendes said.

Mendes and other officials said the government made 12 vetos and 32 other alterations to the bill, including a requirement for large landowners to reforest land they had illegally cleared, with less stringent ...

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