US Prize Winner Brazilian Environmentalist Favors Family Farming in the Amazon

    Tarcísio Feitosa, a social activist from the Terra do Meio ("Middle Ground") region of the northern Brazilian state of Pará, was one of yesterday’s, April 24, winners of the Golden Environment Prize, regarded as the world’s most important prize for defenders of the environment. The prize was awarded in San Francisco, California.

    Feitosa, 34, was born and raised in Altamira, in the Xingu region, also in Pará, which is part of the Amazon basin. He now belongs to a people’s alliance to protect the tropical forest and local communities.

    His prize, in the South and Central American category, was in recognition of his efforts on behalf of human rights and environmental protection and sustainable development in the Xingu and Terra do Meio regions.

    He began his work at the age of 15, as a volunteer in the struggle to demarcate indigenous territories. He remained active in this area until 2000.

    "In that region, we receive an education closely oriented towards the communities. There is an awareness concerning the situation of the indigenous peoples and the traditional populations," he says.

    In 2000 Feitosa became involved in a movement opposed to the illegal extraction of mahogany wood. He documented this illicit activity and reported it to government agencies.

    His initiative led to the confiscation of 6000 illegally removed mahogany logs, which were later sold in an auction that netted US$ 1.5 million, used to create a fund to underwrite sustainable development and conservation efforts in the region.

    In 2002 Feitosa started working on studies to create conservation units in the Xingu basin. He is currently a member of the Land Pastoral Commission and one of the coordinators of the Movement for the Development of the Transamazon and Xingu (MTDX), a network of non-governmental organizations gathered under two banners, he says: "showing that family farming and the peoples of the forest can coexist with the forest and halting the construction of five dams in the region."

    He points out that one of the dams – the Belmonte Dam – is already under construction (despite having been temporarily blocked by the courts), and the other four are in the analysis stage.

    "These dams represent the destruction of this great ecological corridor, which will be completed by the creation of the conservation units," he explains.

    Besides Feitosa, this year’s Goldman Environment Prize winners include social activists involved in the struggle to preserve the Danube River, the safe storage of chemical weapons wastes produced in the United States, the defense of forests in Liberia, the end of illegal logging in Papua New Guinea, and respect for society in dam construction in China.

    Agência Brasil


    • Show Comments (0)

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    comment *

    • name *

    • email *

    • website *


    You May Also Like

    Pará fish

    Brazil’s Small Fish Farmers Have Big Plans for the Arapaima

    Brazilian small fish farmers from the Pará state are preparing to increase production of ...

    Brazilian Government Sees Bankrupcy-Bound Varig Airline at Brink of Precipice

    Once powerful and monopolistic Varig Airlines’s debt to the Brazilian Airport Infrastructure Company (Infraero) ...

    In Brazil, a Silk Factory with a Social Conscience

    Silk, one of the noblest fabrics of haute couture, can also become artistic products ...

    Brazil’s Debt Falls US$ 2 Bi, Still US$ 329.7 Bi

    Brazil’s net government debt fell in September for the third straight month, to a ...

    Brazilian Air Force Officer Ending Training for Space Travel

    A Brazilian air force officer will become his nation’s first person in space when ...

    Brazil’s First Brother Pans Lula and Vows Not to Vote for Him

    Jackson Inácio da Silva, one of the Brazilian president’s brothers, has already declared his ...

    How Cardoso Used Marx to Understand Brazilian Slavery

    {mosimage}In Capitalismo e Escravidão no Brasil Meridional (Capitalism and Slavery in Southern Brazil), Cardoso ...

    With Venezuela in, Mercosur Becomes a US$ 1 Trillion Heavyweight

    As of now, Mercosur officially has five members. Venezuela joins the block at a ...