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Forests 2016, 7(3), 66; doi:10.3390/f7030066

Decreasing Deforestation in the Southern Brazilian Amazon—The Role of Administrative Sanctions in Mato Grosso State

Graduate School of Environmental Studies, Tohoku University, Sendai 980-0845, Japan
Academic Editors: Andrew P. Vayda and Eric J. Jokela
Received: 19 August 2015 / Revised: 2 March 2016 / Accepted: 9 March 2016 / Published: 12 March 2016
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Abstract

Forest conservation efforts through regulatory enforcement routinely failed to prevent large scale deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon. However, a turning point occurred in 2005, when a combination of unfavorable economic conditions and an unprecedented coordinated effort between governmental institutions resulted in a gradual slowdown in deforestation. The continuation of this deforestation slowdown in an environment of economic recovery and expansion after 2009 suggests that regulatory enforcement achieved a measure of success not experienced before. In this study, the impact of fines, embargoes on rural private properties, and confiscation of means of production and produce on deforestation in the Southern Amazon state of Mato Grosso was considered through regression and GIS-based analyses. It was found that while all three sanctions were negatively correlated with deforestation, there were important differences in their level of enforcement. Embargoes were effectively implemented and showed high deforestation deterrence effectiveness, but the actual collection of the values of fines issued was extremely low, which casts doubts on their actual effectiveness as a deforestation deterrence mechanism. The results suggest that while sanctions for illegal deforestation have played an important role in the slowdown in deforestation, measures to increase the collection of fines issued are urgently needed. View Full-Text
Keywords: deforestation; Amazon; regulation enforcement deforestation; Amazon; regulation enforcement
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Sousa, P.Q. Decreasing Deforestation in the Southern Brazilian Amazon—The Role of Administrative Sanctions in Mato Grosso State. Forests 2016, 7, 66.

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