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Economic Aspects | Natural Resource Aspects | Institutional Aspects | Social Aspects | Brazil

INSTITUTIONAL ASPECTS OF SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT IN BRAZIL

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INTEGRATED DECISION-MAKING

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

The National Commission for Sustainable Development Policies and Agenda 21which was established in February 1997, is the national coordination mechanismin in charge of proposing strategies for sustainable development and coordinating, developing and monitoring the follow-up of the implementation of Agenda 21 in Brazil. The membership of the Commission includes the Ministries of Environment, Water Resources and the Legal Amazon, of Planning and Budget, of Science and Technology, of External Relations, the Secretariat for Strategic Affairs and the Social Policies Chamber. Other participants include the Brazilian Business Council for Sustainable Development, the Federal University of Minas Gerais, the "Reis Veloso" Institute of Higher Studies, the Brazilian Forum of NGOs and Social Movements for Environment and Development and the "Onda Azul" Foundation. Secretariat services are provided to the Commission by the Ministry of Environment, Water Resources and the Legal Amazon.

Approximately 20% of federal guidelines have been updated and reviewed since UNCED. States have been more active than the federal government in enacting new environmental legislation, such as enviromental audits. With the exception of tradeable permits, there are examples of practically all other forms of economic instruments being adopted, such as subsidized credits and incentives, taxes on solid wastes, pollution, natural resource use, eco-labelling and container deposit-return schemes.

Although there are studies under way, there is not as yet official action on integrating environmental and national accounting. Cost studies undertaken by the Applied Economics Research Institute (IPEA) have covered the depletion or degradation of mineral, water and forest resources, as well as the impact on health of water and air pollution.

Institutional reform is moving the country toward decentralization, privatization, better coordination and a clearer responsibility among the three levels of government, improved political, fiscal and public management practices, and a more stable social security system. Gradual improvement in all these sectors is an essential feature for a better performance in the environment area, which has led the way in setting up decentralized systems and practices and in pursuing a broader participation of society in enacting policy and in decision-making through appropriate mechanisms. Progress has been achieved in recent years in terms of public awareness and through federal/state and public/private partnerships, although actual enforcement of environmental legislation, use of control instruments and environmental education activities have not had so far a decisive effect in ensuring a widespread conservationist attitude. As in other fields, much remains to be accomplished, regarding the availability and access to adequate information, the use of economic instruments and the dissemination of sound practices that would stimulate a sense of responsible stewardship, in order to involve all citizens in the protection of valuable habitats and species, and to rationally utilize the counry's ample and diversified natural resources.

National Decision-Making Structure

1. National Sustainable Development Coordination Body: YES
2. National Sustainable Development Policy: YES
3. National Agenda 21/other strategy for SD: YES
4. Local/Regional Agenda(s) 21: YES
5. Environmental Impact Assessment Law: YES
6. Major Groups involved in Sustainable Development Decision-Making: YES

National Instruments and Programmes

1. Sustainable. Dev. or environmental education incorporated into school curricula: IN PROCESS
2. Sustainable Development Indicators Program: IN PROCESS*
3. Ecolabel Regulations: IN PROCESS
4. Recycle/Reuse Programs: YES
5. Green Accounting Program: YES
6. Access to Internet: YES
7. Access to World Wide Web: YES
8. A national World Wide Web Site for Sustainable Dev. or State of the Environment: YES
address: http://www.mma.gov.br

 

Policies, Programmes, and Legislation

Does your country have either a policy, programme, and/or legislation consistent with Agenda 21 in:  
1. Combatting poverty: YES
2. Changing consumption and production patterns: IN PROCESS
3. Atmosphere: YES
4. Land Use Planning: YES
5. Forest and Deforestation: YES
6. Desertification and Drought: YES
7. Sustainable Mountain Development: NO
8. Sustainable Agriculture: YES
9. Biological Diversity: YES
10. Biotechnology: YES
11. Oceans and Coastal Areas: YES
12. Freshwater Management: YES
13. Toxic Chemicals: YES
14. Hazardous Wastes: YES
15. Solid Wastes: YES
16. Radioactive Wastes: YES
17. Energy: YES
18. Transport: YES
19. Sustainable Tourism: YES

*There are sectoral indicators in the country, such as for economy, science and technology, human development, mining and energy, agriculture, education. However, in the environmental area, indicators are still being aggrated. There are indicators on water, air and land under application, at state and local levels.

Decision Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups involvement

No information is available.

Programmes and Projects

No information is available. 

Status 

See under Decision Making: Coordinating Bodies.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies 

No information is available. 

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

No information is available.

 

* * *

This information is based on Brazil's submission to the 5th, 6th and 7th Sessions of the UN Commission on Sustainable Development. Last update: February 1999

For Brazil's National Agenda 21, click here:
For information on Brazil's implementation of Agenda 21, click here:
For a survey on what Brazilian people think about environment and Agenda 21, click here:
For information on Environmental Law around the World, click here:
For the Ministerio do Meio Ambiente, dos Recursos Hidricos, e da Amazonia Legal, click here.
For the Ministerio do Planejamento, click here.

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MAJOR GROUPS

WOMEN

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

The Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination Against Women was signed on 31 March 1981 and ratified on 1 February 1984, with reservations. These reservations were cancelled by Congress on 22 June 1994.

A Task Force on gender policies, guidelines, strategies and plans for achievement of equality in all aspects of society is contemplated as part of the Technical Committe for the Brazilian Agenda 21. A National Plan of Action to implement the decisions of the Beijing Conference will be launched in 1997. The existing institutional structure includes a National Council of Women´s Rights, 11 State Councils and 38 Municipal Councils, as well as 115 NGOs, and over 3000 independent associations.

An agreement was signed in 1996 between the Ministry of Justice, through the National Council on Women's Rights (CNDM) and the Ministry of Education to review curricula, school textbooks and teachers training with a view to promoting dissemination of gender-relevant knowledge.

Decision Making: Legislation and Regulations 

One-hundred fifty-six bills related to women´s rights were introduced in Congress, dealing principally with working conditions, violence, health and civil rights. Political parties must include at least 20% of women candidates at proportional elections.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups involvement

No information is available.

Programmes and Projects

No information is available. 

Status 

Some statistics regarding the staus of women in Brazil include:

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies

No information is available.  

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

No information is available.

 

* * *

This information is based on Brazil's submission to the 5th Session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development, April 1997. Last update: 1 April 1997

For information on Women Watch in different countries, click here:
For information on national plans of action in the follow-up to the Beijing Conference, click here:

CHILDREN AND YOUTH

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups involvement

No information is available.

Programmes and Projects

No information is available. 

Status 

Relevant youth fora promoting dialogue between youth and government at all levels and mechanisms that permit youth access to information and opportunity to present their views on implementing Agenda 21 have not been established. Possible participants at relevant fora are the National Students"s Union (UNE), and the Brazilian Secondary School Students` Union (UBES), which respectively bring together all university and high school student organizations at state and local levels.

Youth unemployment has been reduced from an estimated 27% in 1992 to 17% in 1996 (these data do not include those not previously employed).

There is no target date for ensuring that more than 50% of youth, gender balanced, have access to appropriate secondary education or vocational training. In 1995, 28% of the population aged 20 and over had a secondary education. The target for 1999 of the National Professional Education Plan is to train or educate 20% of the Economically Active Population estimated at 15 million, including youth and adolescents.

Infant mortality rates went down from 43% in 1992 to 40% in 1994, most significantly from 87% to 63% in the Northeast. Some 3% of children under 5 years of age were undernourished in 1995. Illiteracy in children between 10 and 14 went down from 14.4% in 1990 to 10% in 1995.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies

No information is available.  

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

No information is available.


* * *


This information is based on Brazil's submission to the 5th Session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development, April 1997. Last update: 1 April 1997

INDIGENOUS PEOPLE

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups involvement

No information is available.

Programmes and Projects

No information is available. 

Status 

A process is in place to empower indigenous people and their communities, through policies and legal instruments, and indigenous people actively participate in national policies on an ad-hoc basis.

Indigenous people are partially involved in resource management strategies at the national and local level depending on their location and relative degree of awareness. Examples of Indian representation are the Council of the Program for the Protection of Indian Lands in the Amazon and the Committee on Demonstration Projects A, both part of the Pilot Program for the Protection of Tropical Forests. There are 109 registered Indian associations, with broad geographic, ethnic and gender representation.

The Indian population in Brazil was estimated, in 1995, at 325,652 individuals, 54% of whom are in the Amazon Region. They are settled in 554 Indian reserves and areas, located in federal land, which amounted to 946.452 km2, or 11.1% of the country's territory. Of the 279 reserves yet to be demarcated, 136 are undergoing or have completed their regular process of identification. Indians have the exclusive rights to hold and exploit the natural resources in those reserves. There are in all 215 different ethnic groups, which speak 170 different languages, in every possible cultural situation and stage of development, and 70,000 indian children who attend 785 bilingual schools.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies

No information is available.  

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

No information is available.

 

* * *

This information is based on Brazil's submission to the 5th Session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development, April 1997. Last update: 1 April 1997

NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups involvement

No information is available.

Programmes and Projects

No information is available. 

Status 

NGOs inputs are considered important by the government. They are represented in the national, state and local environment councils and are carrying out consultancies at several public institutions. Since 1997 they have been allowed to participate in the formulaiton, establishment and evaluation of official mechanisms to review Agenda 21 implementation. They are represented on the Commission for Sustainable Development Policies and National Agenda 21.

Federal Constitution establishes the citizen's right to form an association, without formal authorization and free of governmental interference, as well as the right to information, of personal, collective or general interest, provided by government bodies and agencies in accordance with legislation regarding time frames and responsibilities. Specific legislation with respect to rights, incentives and duties of NGOs may be required to promote their participation in the decision-making process. NGOs have participated in various human rights and environmental councils, the discussions involving the structures and procedures of the Commisssion for Sustainable Development, and the organization of the Rio+5 event.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies

No information is available.  

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

No information is available.

 

* * *

This information is based on Brazil's submission to the 5th Session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development, April 1997 and on additional information provided by the Government. Last update: 27 April 1998

LOCAL AUTHORITIES

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups involvement

No information is available.

Programmes and Projects

No information is available. 

Status 

There are at least 10 local Agendas 21 being drafted, involving 18% of the population, all of which involve representation of women and youth. The Government, through the Federal Ministry of Environment, and some State Governments, supports Local Agenda 21 initiatives.

A considerable number of municipalities across Brazil have joined the National Municipal Association for the Environment (ANAMA), and have had a seat in the National Council of the Environment since 1996. The Ministry of Environment has entered into an agreement with ANAMA to help implement local Agenda 21s in a few dozen municipalities, and is currently developing a database of good examples of sustainable local management with the Free University of the Environment in Curitiba. The Community Solidarity Program has also retained the Brazilian Municipal Institute (IBAM) to undertake a study on innovative solutions to the problem of providing urban services to the poor.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies

No information is available.  

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

No information is available.

 

* * *


This information is based on Brazil's submission to the 5th Session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development, April 1997. Last update: 1 April 1997

For information on Local Agendas 21 in Brazil, click here:

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WORKERS AND UNIONS

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups involvement

No information is available.

Programmes and Projects

No information is available. 

Status 

Workers (as organized labor) do not yet participate in National Agenda 21 discussions or implementation. Bipartite and tripartite mechanisms for health and safety are in place, but collective agreements on environment are not significant. The problematic occupational health situation, with 424,000 accidents among urban workers, of which approximately 4,000 were fatal, prompted the Government to launch a National Campaign to Combat Accidents at Work, to be subsequently upgraded to a National Program.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies

No information is available.  

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

Brazil has ratified ILO Conventions 155 and others (on health and safety). Pending Congressional approval are the ILO Conventions on child labor (138) and Indian population (169).

 

* * *


This information is based on Brazil's submission to the 5th Session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development, April 1997. Last update: 1 April 1997

BUSINESS AND INDUSTRY

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups involvement

No information is available.

Programmes and Projects

No information is available. 

Status 

Government policies encourage increasing the efficiency of resource use, including reuse, recycling, and reduction of waste per unit of economic output but do not require recycling.

To encourage the concept of stewardship in management and use of natural resources by entrepreneurs actions have been taken such as:

Forty-eight companies and professional associations have subscribed to the International Chamber of Commerce's Business Charter for Sustainable Development and three large corporations are members of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development. A business-sponsored Brazilian Foundation for Sustainable Development is a leading player in the Rio+5 event scheduled for March 1997.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies 

No information is available. 

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

No information is available.

 

* * *


This information is based on Brazil's submission to the 5th Session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development, April 1997. Last update: 1 April 1997

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SCIENTIFIC COMMUNITY

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups involvement

No information is available.

Programmes and Projects

No information is available. 

Status 

The scientific community addresses the general public and deals with sustainable development matters in two ways: individually, through the professional contribution of hundreds of specialists to the Science and Technology Development agencies, and collectively by means of regular activities carried out by private technical and scientific societies, such as regular meetings and publications, especially in the fields of physics, mathematics, engineering, biology and chemistry.

In addition to the activities related elsewhere, post-graduate associations contribute effectively to the drafting of educational, science and technology policies, and a relevant role is played in those areas by the Brazilian Academy of Sciences and the Brazilian Society for the Progress of Science (SBPC), with a membership of over 5,000 scientists, technicians, and university students.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies  

No information is available.

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

No information is available.

 

* * *

This information is based on Brazil's submission to the 5th Session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development, April 1997. Last update: 1 April 1997

FARMERS

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups involvement

No information is available.

Programmes and Projects

No information is available. 

Status 

The Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation (EMBRAPA) and the State Rural Extension organizations (EMATER`s) have the responsibility for assisting farmers in their work and promoting and encouraging sustainable farming practices and technologies.

The participatory National Forum on Agriculture is in the process of formulating and proposing, in 1997, a new agricultural policy based on sustainable development practices. The Green Protocol provides credit and specific incentives to that effect. The National Forum on Agriculture provides geographical and sectoral representation to enhance participation of organizations of farmers in design and implementation of sustainable development policies.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies

No information is available.  

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

No information is available.

 

 

* * *

This information is based on Brazil's submission to the 5th Session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development, April 1997. Last update: 1 April 1997



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SCIENCE

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups involvement

No information is available.

Programmes and Projects

No information is available. 

Status 

A significant step taken since 1992 was the establishment of the National Council on Science and Technology (CCT), chaired by the President of the Republic and having distinguished scientists and leading businessmen as members, thereby bringing together research and market concerns. The new Council heads an institutional structure formed by research, educational as well as development agencies and organizations at federal, local and private levels, which include the National Research Council (CNPq), the Studies and Project Financing Agency (FINEP), the State Research and Development Foundations, the University-level Capacity Building Commission (CAPES), over one hundred universities and several dozen public and private research establishments.

With regard to incorporating science into decision-making, the following may be highlighted: the actions of INPE - National Space Research Agency and INPA - National Institute for Amazon Research, with respect to deforestation, burning control, weather and climate, management of water resources and wise use of biodiversity. Agricultural activities have greatly benefited from the results of the Meteorology and Water Resources Management Program, in particular with the research developed by EMBRAPA - Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation. CETEM - Mineral Technology Center also contributes to the decision making process with respect to mineral exploitation. The Multiannual Plan - PPA, which guides the actions of the Federal Government, has been formulated with the participation of the MCT, whose positions incorporate contributions from science and technology, including in the implementation of the various activities developed under the "Brazil in Action" Project. The activities of directed research - of the PPG-7, as well as of the PTU - Humid Tropics Program, are also developed to contribute with the sustainable development process of the Amazon. The IBAMA Research Directorate develops studies to identify environmentally sound technologies and disseminate the results of these studies through publications that provide input to decision making in various environmental areas.

A greater emphasis on scientific achievement and a marked improvement in the access to information and means of data processing and communication have signaled continuous progress in this area since UNCED. Priorities include biological and computer sciences, automation, and fine chemistry. Relevant needs would point as well to marine and land resources, health and the social sciences.

The number of undergraduate, master's and doctorate level courses increased from 168, 91 and 77, respectively, in 1992 to 1996 to new figures of 1775, 1159 and 616, in 1996.

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies

No information is available.  

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

No information is available.


* * *

This information is based on Brazil's submission to the 5th & 6th Sessions of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development, April 1997& 1998. Last update: 27 April 1998

For the Conselho Nacional Desenvolvimento, Cientifico e Tecnologico, click here.
For the Ministry of Science and Technology, click here.
For the Instituto Brasiliero de Meio Ambiente e dos Recursos Naturais Renovaveis, click here.

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INFORMATION

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups involvement

No information is available.

Programmes and Projects

No information is available. 

Status 

Availability of sustainable development information at the national level

Agenda 21 Chapters

Very good

Good

Some good data but many gaps

Poor

Remarks

2. International cooperation and trade    

X

   
3. Combating poverty      

X

 
4. Changing consumption patterns          
5. Demographic dynamics and sustainability  

X

     
6. Human health  

X

     
7. Human settlements    

X

   
8. Integrating E & D in decision-making      

X

 
9. Protection of the atmosphere  

X

     
10. Integrated planning and management of land resources      

X

 
11. Combating deforestation          
12. Combating desertification and drought  

X

     
13. Sustainable mountain development          
14. Sustainable agriculture and rural development    

X

   
15. Conservation of biological diversity    

X

   
16. Biotechnology    

X

   
17. Oceans, seas, coastal areas and their living resources    

X

   
18. Freshwater resources    

X

   
19. Toxic chemicals    

X

   
20. Hazardous wastes    

X

   
21. Solid wastes    

X

   
22. Radioactive wastes      

X

 
24. Women in sustainable development      

X

 
25. Children and youth    

X

   
26. Indigenous people      

X

 
27. Non-governmental organizations    

X

   
28. Local authorities      

X

 
29. Workers and trade unions      

X

 
30. Business and industry    

X

   
31. Scientific and technological community  

X

     
32. Farmers      

X

 
33. Financial resources and mechanisms      

X

 
34. Technology, cooperation and capacity-building      

X

 
35. Science for sustainable development      

X

 
36. Education, public awareness and training      

X

 
37. International cooperation for capacity-building    

X

   
38. International institutional arrangements      

X

 
39. International legal instruments      

X

 
40. Information for decision-making      

X

 

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies

No information is available.  

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

No information is available.

 

* * *

For a databank on successful programmes in implementing Agenda 21, click here:

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INTERNATIONAL LAW

Decision-Making: Coordinating Bodies   

No information is available.

Decision Making: Legislation and Regulations 

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Strategies, Policies and Plans  

No information is available.

Decision-Making: Major Groups involvement

No information is available.

Programmes and Projects

No information is available. 

Status 

Among agreements, conventions, and developments relevant to sustainable development not covered elsewhere are:

Challenges

No information is available.

Capacity-building, Education, Training and Awareness-raising  

No information is available.

Information

No information is available.

Research and Technologies 

No information is available. 

Financing

No information is available.

Cooperation

No information is available.

 

* * *


This information is based on Brazil's submission to the 5th Session of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development, April 1997. Last update: 1 April 1997



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