Brazil Weighs Curbs on Greenhouse Gases

Brazilian Environment Minister Carlos Minc this week floated an ambitious proposal for reducing greenhouse gas emissions, Reuters reports. The plan calls for Brazil to cut emissions by 2020 to 40% below a business-as-usual scenario.

Under Minc's plan, considered the most aggressive within government, cuts would come primarily by limiting deforestation in the Amazon and reducing emissions from agriculture. Brazilian negotiators aren't expected to have a final position until next month, in time for the United Nations December meeting on climate change in Copenhagen. Meanwhile, Brazil's emissions continue to grow. The Environment Ministry released data (in Portuguese) estimating that Brazil's greenhouse gas emissions had grown by about 40% between 1994 and 2007, not including deforestation. Cattle and fertilizer use in agriculture were among the largest contributors.