Monday, 5 September 2011

60% of deforested Amazon used for cattle: study

Over 60 percent of deforested areas of the Brazilian Amazon forest are used for cattle grazing , with only five percent used for agriculture, a new government study reveals. 

By analyzing satellite imagery, Brazilian  officials  found of the 719,000 square kilometers (277,000 square miles) cleared up to 2008, a whopping 62 percent was left as just grass, and that the use amounted to on average one cow per hectare, roughly the size of a football field.

"Having less than one head of cattle per hectare is unacceptable," said Environment Minister Izabella Teixeira in comments quoted by the Brazilian press Saturday.
"It's a waste, because the forest is being replaced by something that does not generate income or growth," she added.

As five percent of the land goes to agriculture, some 21 percent is abandoned and left to its own regeneration.
Brazil which claims jurisdiction over the majority of the Amazon, the worlds largest rain forest has committed to reduce deforestation drastically by 80 percent by 2020, although current government figure indicate that the process has in fact increased by 15 percent. 


  1. This is another case of politics getting in the way of ecological conservation I feel ! With all the different species in the Amazon surely there should be a preservation order ?!

  2. I agree ... setting aims and targets are only useful if they adhered to ! This will have terrible long term affects for Brazil not to mention the Amazons ecosystem.

  3. Brazil needs to access whats truly valuable to their economy and look at their long term plan...

  4. They need to focus on their agricultural uses of the Amazons land and how to do it efficiently

  5. There needs to be penalties in place if the Amazon is deforested for any reason ...