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The review of the Brazilian Forest Act: harmful effects on amphibian conservation

In the last months there is a growing discussion in Brazil about a new Brazilian Forest Act (Código Florestal). This new proposal, in substitution to the current Act, includes modifications which will affect negatively natural populations of amphibians. Besides the deleterious impacts upon amphibians, it will also harm the national and international human populations. Among the possible effects, in consequence of the associate amphibian population declines or complete loss, we cite the increase of agricultural production costs, loss of primary sources of compounds for the medical industry, generalized ecological disequilibrium, eutrofication of water bodies, increase in the costs of water (for humans) treatment, increase of agricultural plagues, and increase of insect borne diseases. All these effects are of high relevance, even more if we consider the population declines of amphibians, the most threatened terrestrial vertebrate group in the world. Therefore, we propose that if a new Forest Act must be prepared, that it should be based, besides in unlikely immediate economical benefits to farm owners, in scientific knowledge which benefits nature conservancy, economy, health, and human welfare.

conservation; threats; law; amphibians; Brazil

Instituto Virtual da Biodiversidade | BIOTA - FAPESP Departamento de Biologia Vegetal - Instituto de Biologia, UNICAMP CP 6109, 13083-970 - Campinas/SP, Tel.: (+55 19) 3521-6166, Fax: (+55 19) 3521-6168 - Campinas - SP - Brazil