World Rainforest Movement

Brazil: 30 people intoxicated by pesticides sprayed from plane on eucalyptus plantations

The traditional communities known as geraizeiras at the Vale do Guará Settlement, in the town of Rio Pardo de Minas, north of Minas Gerais, denounce that an airplane spraying poison on a major eucalyptus plantation has hit the community, intoxicating 30 people, including children, elderly, youth and adults. They felt nausea, fever, vomit and itching skin. Airplane spraying is increasingly common in Brazil – the world’s champion in pesticide use.

The community says that they have no one to resort to in order to denounce the facts; they feel wronged and they complain about impunity. They would denounce it to the Municipal Environmental Council, but the Council has members linked to the local eucalyptus industry. The local geraizeira community demands immediate inspection by state and federal authorities on pesticide application, and protection for communities.

Local communities have been struggling against eucalyptus and its expansion for years. They say it has negatively affected their lives, taking over areas used by the communities and drying up water sources.

Based on information provided by Rede de Comunicadores Populares do Semiárido Mineiro. See information on the Permanent Campaign against Pesticides and for LIfe in Brazil on the whole article available at ASA Minas’s blog