13 September 2013
Mauro Lucio is living the dream. Having started work as a cowboy at 16, he is now 48 and raises cattle on 50 square kilometres of Paragominas municipality in Pará state. The animals on his ranch are healthy, the grass thick and the fences solid. Along the avenues on his estate, wooden posts name the many different varieties of trees he has planted between the fields. His wife serves delicious food while his three daughters play happily on the verandah of the handsome wooden ranch house.
The only thing that is not ideal about Mr Lucio’s estate is its history. Until around ten years ago it was part of the rainforest. The biggest trees, up to 100 feet tall, were sold for timber, the rest burnt. In this way Brazil has lost around 19% of its Amazonian forest. And Brazil makes up around 63% of the Amazon region.
Read more from the Economist here.