IBAMA President Resigns Over Belo Monte Licensing

Ex-President of IBAMA, Abelardo Bayma Azevedo, at a briefing
Ex-President of IBAMA, Abelardo Bayma Azevedo, at a briefing The President of Brazil's environmental agency IBAMA, Abelardo Bayma Azevedo, submitted a letter of resignation yesterday after facing heavy pressure to grant a full installation license for the Belo Monte Complex, another victim in a long-running political war over environmental licensing between Brazil's Ministry of Mines and Energy and its Ministry of the Environment. The victims keep piling up, and it's bad for the Amazon. Brazil’s Big Bad Wolf Attacks Again Azevedo is the latest victim of a feud between the min

Indigenous Movement Protests Against the Granting of the Belo Monte Dam Concession in Brasilia

Thursday, August 26, 2010
A mobilization against the signing of the Concession for Belo Monte marked the inauguration of the refurbished Presidential Palace on Thursday, August 26th, 2010. The act took place in the plaza of the three powers in Brasília, with the participation of indigenous leaders, representatives of environmental organizations like Greenpeace, the Indigenous Missionary Council (CIMI) and the Articulation of Indigenous Peoples of Brazil (APIB) and civil society. The goal of the mobilization was to protest against the signing of the Decree of the Grant for the Concession of the Belo Monte Dam Compl

Belo Monte: State Subsidies a Trojan Horse for Mega-Risks

Trojan Horse
Last week ANEEL released the final list of 18 companies participating in the Belo Monte consortium. Everyone expected some big name investors to carry the USD$17 billion project. But, as of now, the state has close to a 75% stake in this "private project."

Belo Monte’s Avatar

Thursday, June 24, 2010
President Lula wittingly oversimplifies the issue of Belo Monte.  As an intelligent man, he knows that what is still keeping doubts about the hydroelectric plant alive has nothing to do with the visit of a “gringo filmmaker.” Simplifications are great during election time, but the truth is that the dam’s administrative process is occurring without the necessary environmental, fiscal or economic caution. In a democracy, it is necessary to sway public opinion. Belo Monte is being shoved on the country very authoritatively, in a hurry, that doesn’t make any sense except to the construc

Lula's Own Hollywood Version of Belo Monte

Protestors in Altamira, Pará
Protestors in Altamira, Pará Movimento Xingu Vivo para Sempre A politician will say anything to support his party in an election year. That's why in his scripted blame of opposition to Belo Monte, Lula continually reverts to the same character: the green gringo, whose eco-fetish impedes Brazil's development.   But a delusional person will do anything to sustain his own version of reality. This is why, behind the scenes of his latest media rant, a strong military presence physically intimated 400 riverine, indigenous, and urban protestors from the Xingu region that sought to debate

Speech by Pres. Lula at a rally for the Belo Monte Dam

Speech by Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva at a rally for the Belo Monte Dam and the “development” of the Xingu Region Altamira – PA, June 22nd, 2010 I, comrades, learned over the course of my life, to do politics and I learned to understand people’s behavior. It’s not possible that we don’t take into consideration… and here, I think it’s important that the press register this democratic act that we’re doing here. Certainly, a half-dozen well-intentioned young people, but certainly with intentions, maybe not thinking of Belo Monte… If they had the patience t

Lame Duck Lula Pushes For Huge Amazon Dam

Monday, June 7, 2010
Unfazed by entrenched environmental opposition, a threat of war by local indigenous groups, and celebrity lobbying by a handful of Hollywood stars, Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva is putting the pedal to the metal on a controversial hydroelectric project slated for the country’s Amazon jungle region. Planned for the Xingu River, a major tributary of the Amazon River, the Belo Monte Dam project promises to add a staggering 11,200 megawatts of electricity to Brazil’s grid. Once completed, it would be the world’s third-largest hydroelectric complex after the Three Gorges Dam
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