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Influence of land use and occupation patterns and legal regime in Permanent Preservation Areas maintenance in the Alto Xingu basin, MT

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Mayra de Freitas Preto
Total Authors: 1
Document type: Master's Dissertation
Press: Piracicaba.
Institution: Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Escola Superior de Agricultura Luiz de Queiroz (ESALA/BC)
Defense date:
Examining board members:
Maria Victoria Ramos Ballester; Andrea Santos Garcia; Carlos Augusto Klink; Daniel de Castro Victoria
Advisor: Maria Victoria Ramos Ballester

Agricultural expansion and intensification in Brazil have been promoting rapid transformations of landscape patterns in the Amazon agricultural frontier, followed by increasing deforestation rates and environmental impacts. Despite being legally protected as Permanent Preservation Areas (PPAs), riparian zones located in this region are under pressure, and government conservation efforts have been questioned. Considering the growing agrarian pressure in the region and data scarcity, this work aimed to analyze environmental liabilities in PPAs located in rural properties in the Upper Xingu river basin, identifying possible influences of land tenure and patterns of land use and occupation. The role of environmental legislation and public policies were also under investigation. Through geoprocessing techniques, the impact of the Native Vegetation Protection Law (NVPL) on the protection of riparian environments was first analyzed, after six years of its implementation, in the municipalities of Querência and São José do Xingu (MT, Brazil). The dynamics of environmental liabilities were assessed according to different requirements for restoration of riparian vegetation, and regional context, considering land use, social actors and environmental governance. In the areas where the requirements for PPA recomposition were decreased by NVPL, the reduction rates of environmental liabilities were lower, and new advances in riparian deforestation were observed. Settlements and smallholders farms concentrated a higher relative vegetation deficit. However, large farms were the main responsible for environmental liabilities in the study areas, and remain the main drivers of new deforestation. The study highlighted that problems and responsiveness differ according different regional conditions and social actors. These are elements to be considered when implementing and monitoring any protection policy or recovery plan for riparian zones, which must act at the landscape level, as local improvements are not necessarily converted into gains for connectivity and protection of ecosystem services. The findings of this first approach were explored through an extensive documentary research on the historical process of usage limitation of riparian zones in Brazil. Through the identification of its main progress and failures, important questions were raised for advances in conservation efforts of riparian zones. Among these, we highlighted the (i) importance of a cohesive and integrated normative system and sectoral policies, (ii) need for investment in monitoring, fiscalization and responsibilization systems of illegal deforestation, (iii) biases of flexibilization in environmental policies, (iv) importance of a solid scientific basis, and (v) potential of economic instruments in maintaining riparian vegetation on private properties. (AU)

FAPESP's process: 18/09871-8 - The role of land use and cover on the conservation of permanent preservation areas in alto Xingu River Basin - MT
Grantee:Mayra de Freitas Preto
Support Opportunities: Scholarships in Brazil - Master