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Brazilian National Congress: Don’t strip away protection of endangered species!

Brazilian National Congress: Don’t strip away protection of endangered species!

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This petition has been created by Carmel Croukamp D. and may not represent the views of the Avaaz community.
Carmel Croukamp D.
started this petition to
Brazilian National Congress
Brazilian Legislative Decree no. 184, authored by Senator Ronaldo Caiado, aims to strip Brazilian endangered species of their legal protections, as defined in Ordinance no. 444 of the Brazilian Ministry of the Environment.

The Brazilian official list of endangered species help protect species considered at risk from becoming extinct. How do the lists help? They create restrictions for the capture, transport and commercialisation of the species that need such protection on order to survive.

The list includes jaguars, pumas, tapirs, macaws, parrots, everything down to amphibians and insects. All of the species on the list have populations already so low in number that they run a real risk of becoming extinct. The absolute last thing these species need is to be stripped of these legal protections.

The legislative decree proposed argues that protection of endangered species prevents sustainable development. Obviously, such argument shows ignorance, wilful or not, of the term, ‘sustainable development’.

Sustainability involves thinking in terms of the medium and long term, and not in terms of immediate profit. Taking away the legal protection of endangered species doesn’t just involve an abandonment of those species, but the abandonment of ecosystems also necessary to sustain agriculture and, indeed, life on the planet. It entails the abandonment of Brazil’s greatest riches and its greatest contribution to the planet: Its biodiversity. It entails a fundamental lack of respect for life. And, as we know, when you strip away environmental protections, disasters happen.

They're trying to pass this law quickly and quietly. If we act now, and call attention to this issue, we can make a real difference.

The Legislative Decree is currently awaiting a vote of approval, in the next week, by the Constitution and Justice Commission. This is the only step necessary to reach the Brazilian National Congress. Here, the Legislative Decree will require an absolute majority - 257 votes in favour by Deputies, and 41 by Senators - to pass into law. Because the law proposed is a Legislative Decree, there would then be no possibility of veto by President Dilma.

The worrying thing is that there is already a precedent for this: In June of 2015, endangered species of aquatic animals lost their legal protection when their list, Ordinance no. 445, was nullified by the Federal Court, following a Legislative Decree presented by Deputy Alceu Moreira, using similar arguments about sustainable development.

Now it’s the turn of Ordinance 444, why protects terrestrial endangered species of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and invertebrates on the Official List of Endangered Species.

Senators are trying to pass this law quickly and quietly. It is absolutely essential that we stop this from happening. Let's make some noise!