Brazil: Federal Prosecutor’s Office upholds injunction barring BNDES financing for Fibria Celulose, a company certified by the FSC

The Federal Public Prosecutor's Office (Ministério Público Federal or MPF) of Brazil has ruled to suspend financing from the Brazilian Development Bank (BNDES) to Fibria, the country’s largest pulp and paper company, for the establishment of a eucalyptus plantation on the territories of quilombola (African-descendant) communities in the north of the state of Espírito Santo. Fibria is accused of using fraudulent means to obtain the rights to the area where it planned to establish a eucalyptus plantation for pulp production. It should be emphasized that this fraudulent conduct, denounced by the Alert Against the Green Desert Network for more than 10 years, did not prevent the company from obtaining the FSC seal of “good forest management”. In its ruling, the MPF has not only requested the return of the fraudulently acquired land to public ownership, but has also called for title to the land to be granted to the quilombola communities of São Mateus and Conceição da Barra, once their traditional occupancy of the land has been confirmed. The demarcation of quilombola lands in Brazil has been kept at a standstill for years due to pressures exerted by the Brazilian agribusiness industry, which includes the eucalyptus plantation sector.

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