What’s behind the burning in the Amazon forest?
By: PAL Supporters in Brazil
According to data compiled by INPE (Brazilian National Institute for
Space Research) 62% of the deforested area in the Amazon is destined to
livestock. The burning is part of this process of occupation and
colonisation of the Amazon. Cattle ranchers deliberately set the Amazon
forest on fire to create pasture and this has a huge impact on
destabilising the world climate.
Cattle ranching is the primary driver of Amazon deforestation.
Only in 2018 5,800 sq km was cut down to create pastures. And since
Bolsonaro became president, the rate of deforestation has increased of
Brazil is now the world’s slaughterhouse.
The Brazilian company JBS, the world’s biggest meat packing company
and single biggest supplier of beef, chicken and leather globally, with
350,000 customers in more than 150 countries. Last year, 1.64 million
tonnes of steak and other cuts were sent overseas.
But how did these cows get into the Amazon forest? The first cows
arrived in 1534, brought by the European colonizers. There were no cows,
sheep, pigs or chickens in South America before the European invasion.
From the very beginning “slaughter animals” were used as a
colonization tool, occupying indigenous lands and promoting the genocide
of indigenous people. Just like in the Occupied Palestinian Territories,
where Israel open chicken farms in confiscated Palestinian land. The
appetite for animal flesh fuels colonialism everywhere in the world.
An important data about cattle ranching in Brazil: we raise 1,15 cow per
hectare. According to the Brazilian Institute of Geography and
Statistics, in 2014 Brazil produced 60 kg of beef per hectare/year. In
the same year, Brazil produced 1032 kg of beans per hectare. Or 5201 kg
of rice. We could actually feed more people using less land if we were
to adopt a plant based diet.
Removing animals, eggs and milk from the plate saves animal lives, but
that’s not all. Here in the colonized part of the world, it also means
a chance to decolonize our diet, as well as being an imperative to
preserve the rain forest, to protect indigenous territories and save the
lives of indigenous peoples. The cows need to leave the Amazon forest,
but you can’t ask for it without removing the meat from your plate too.
Veganism is a revolutionary movement that fights to build a just
society for all: native peoples, peasants, workers, nonhuman animals and
Are you angry about the burning in the Amazon? Consider veganism.
Are you already a vegan and want to fight the ecocide in the Amazon and
the ethnically cleaning of Brazilian native people? Join the
and anti-capitalist struggle.