Great Britain to donate $100 million to Brazil’s Amazon Fund
SAO PAULO (AP) — Britain pledged Friday to give about $100 million to the Brazilian government’s fund to protect the Amazon rainforest, as the South American country beefs up protection of the environment under its new leadership.
British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and Brazil’s President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, who took office in January, announced the contribution to the Amazon Fund on Friday after meeting in London ahead of Saturday’s coronation of King Charles III.
The fund was launched in 2009 to fight against deforestation and build sustainable initiatives in the Brazilian rainforest, a vital natural reserve soaking up fumes from oil, natural gas and coal in South America. The committee that governs it was partially dismantled when rightist President Jair Bolsonaro took office in 2019, and rebooted by the leftist Lula this year.
“President Lula has exhibited great leadership on climate change,” Sunak said on Twitter, adding that he was pleased that Britain would contribute 80 million pounds ($101 million) to the fund, “so we can help stop deforestation and protect biodiversity.”
Earlier this year, U.S. President Joe Biden pledged to join Norway and Germany in resuming donations to the initiative that had been suspended during Bolsonaro’s presidency.
Biden said in April he would seek congressional approval to send $500 million over five years to the Amazon Fund. However, administration officials have been pessimistic about getting congressional approval for climate support abroad, especially with a Republican-controlled House.