OPEN Environmental management | 17 May 2017
PAC Roriz, AM Yanai and PM Fearnside
In 2012 Brazil’s National Congress altered the country’s Forest Code, decreasing various environmental protections in the set of regulations governing forests. This suggests consequences in increased deforestation and emissions of greenhouse gases and in decreased protection of fragile ecosystems. To ascertain the effects, a simulation was run to the year 2025 for the municipality (county) of Boca do Acre, Amazonas state, Brazil. A baseline scenario considered historical behavior (which did not respect the Forest Code), while two scenarios considered full compliance with the old Forest Code (Law 4771/1965) and the current Code (Law 12,651/2012) regarding the protection of “areas of permanent preservation” (APPs) along the edges of watercourses. The models were parameterized from satellite imagery and simulated using Dinamica-EGO software. Deforestation actors and processes in the municipality were observed in loco in 2012. Carbon emissions and loss of forest by 2025 were computed in the three simulation scenarios. There was a 10% difference in the loss of carbon stock and of forest between the scenarios with the two versions of the Forest Code. The baseline scenario showed the highest loss of carbon stocks and the highest increase in annual emissions. The greatest damage was caused by not protecting wetlands and riparian zones.
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