Germany unfreezes 35 million euros for Amazon Fund
Clean Energy Wire
Following the inauguration of Brazil’s new president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva on 1 January, Germany has released 35 million euros for the country’s Amazon Fund, which is dedicated to protecting Brazil’s rainforest. “The new Brazilian government has ambitious plans to advance forest and climate protection and at the same time to strengthen disadvantaged groups, such as the indigenous peoples,” development state secretary Niels Annen said during his state visit to Brazil with German president Frank-Walter Steinmeier. Annen said the cash injection “will only be the start” of Germany’s support for Brazil’s efforts to conserve the rainforest, and boost renewable energies and sustainable urban development. “We will discuss with the new Brazilian government ways in which we can support a socio-ecological transformation of the national economy. This is about ambitious climate protection and at the same time more prosperity for the entire population of Brazil," Annen said.
Norway and Germany froze their Amazon Fund donations after a surge in deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon and disputes with the government of former president Jair Bolsonaro. With hundreds of millions of euros in donations, the Amazon Fund has been central to international efforts to curb deforestation, although its impact is contested. Set up in 2008 and mainly funded by Norway, it provides funding for measures to prevent, control and combat deforestation and for the conservation and sustainable use of resources in the Brazilian Amazon, thus combatting climate change. Germany froze 35 million euros in 2019. Lula has promised to protect the Amazon rainforest and restore Brazil's leadership on climate change.