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The Chaco region concentrates 80% of Argentina's deforestation, a Greenpeace report warned

Eighty per cent of the area is concentrated in the Chaco region, in the provinces of Santiago del Estero, Salta, Chaco and Formosa.

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80% of deforestation in Argentina is concentrated in four provinces of the Chaco region: Santiago del Estero, Salta, Chaco and Formosa , where 113,000 hectares were lost last year, Greenpeace warned today in a report in which he blamed the “expansion out of control of the livestock industry.”

The extinction of the yaguareté , the largest feline in America and the third in the world, is another of the risks warned by the research “The sacrifice of the forests of the Gran Chaco”, revealed today by the environmental organization.

There he details that “the uncontrolled expansion of the livestock industry is generating a historic crime about a unique place: the Gran Chaco, South America's second forest ecosystem, after the Amazon.”

The importance of this space lies in the fact that there coexist, according to the report: 3,400 plant species, 500 bird species, 150 mammals, 120 reptiles, 100amphibians and more than 4 million people, of whom about 8% are indigenous, who depend on the forest to obtain food, water, timber and medicine.

“ 80% of the deforestation is concentrated in the Chaco region, in the provinces of Santiago del Estero, Salta, Chaco and Formosa, where the last five years deforestation due to intensive livestock was more than double that caused by agriculture,” warned the Greenpeace report.

In this line, the organization held the responsibility of the “livestock industry” for making “the Chaco forests and almost all their species disappear” with its “large bulldozers”.

“ On that soil, now open, they install their cows after planting pastures for fattening a product that will then be exported and will end up in the gondola of a supermarket,” he said.

The work warned that the “Argentine beef reaches the table of consumers of the world at the expense of the destruction of the forests of the Gran Chaco and the extinction of its king: the yaguareté”, one of the few species of Argentine fauna declared as a National Natural Monument by Law No. 25,463.

On the Yaguaretés of the Gran Chaco, he mentioned that they depend on very large territories (from 400 to 2,900 square kilometers) and added that “their decrease put the species on the verge of extinction in the region.”

He further specified that “between 1985 and 2013, more than 20% of the Chaco forests (142,000 square kilometers) were converted into grasslands and farmland, reducing their biodiversity, particularly the largest mammals.”

The organization drew attention to the large refrigerators in Argentina that export beef to large supermarkets and wholesalers in Europe and

Israel, which it called for “to adopt a 'Zero Deforestation Policy' and requested that, if they have it, they implement it seriously.”

“ This means ensuring that both their production system and their suppliers do not cause deforestation and respect the rights of indigenous peoples,” he stressed.

The report also warned about the implementation of the Mercosur European Union agreement, stating that “demand for Argentine beef will grow, the export business of large refrigerators will be more profitable and the pressure on forests will increase.”

“ The ambitious plans to increase the stock of cattle in the northern provinces of Argentina (10 million more cows) put 10 million hectares of forests at risk,” he warned.

In this sense he predicted that “its degradation, deforestation and fragmentation will leave almost no chance of survival to the last 20 Yaguaretés remaining in the Chaco region”, so he concluded that it is time to avoid this situation.

Publication Date: 10/08/2019

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