Brazil: where the soy beans come from

A team of researchers working for the Center for International Climate and Environmental Research in Oslo (CICERO) is linking carbon dioxide emissions from Brazilian deforestation to the country’s beef export trade. Writing in the peer-reviewed journal Environmental Research Letters, the team established: “…a correlation between exports (and hence global consumption) of Brazilian cattle and soybeans and emissions from deforestation.”

Source: Wikicommons - Pedro Biondi

Led by Jonas Karstensen, the researchers attribute 30% of the carbon emissions caused by Brazil’s deforestation to the export trade, in the proportion 29:71 soy exports to cattle ranching. With growing volumes of beef exports to emerging markets, Karstensen’s team warned that this trade: “may indirectly contribute to loss of the forests that industrialised countries are seeking to protect through international agreements.

Peter Crosskey
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Peter Crosskey is based in the UK.