When I was in grade school, I was told that we learn about history so that we don’t repeat the same mistakes twice. Apparently, some people didn’t hear the same message, including Brazilian ranchers who are spraying one of this century’s most hazardous pesticides over the Amazon.
Officials from Brazil’s environmental agency (IBAMA) were first notified of this unlawful spraying of Agent Orange, an herbicide that was used during the Vietnam War.
Reports have said many deforesters have switched to this technique in order to reduce costs, and to complete the job faster. And there’s evidence of this illegal practice growing – about four tons of the agent was found in hiding, undispensed.
The herbicide’s intent is to make the leaves fall off of trees. In the War, it was done in order to see any troops that were trying to hide in the bushes. That was the intent. But, as any environmentalist knows, the damages don’t end there.
A simple google search (for those who can stand graphic images) will show you the consequences of this herbicide. Not only does this kills trees, but causes deformities and often, deaths in living beings, that are passed onto future generations. These have been found in wildlife, and in humans as well (For those who have seen the kids show, “Hey Arnold!” a football head isn’t so out-of-the-ordinary in an area sprayed with Agent Orange).
Thankfully, an individual found spraying the agent in Brazil was fined $1.3 million for their actions.
But there are many more deforesters out there, still destroying biodiversity in so many unforgivable ways. Even worse, many teams are able to bypass IBAMA supervision by finding loopholes in the legal framework.
Simply put? This isn’t right by any means. Be sure to share this information with friends. Let’s get people talking about this and stop the spraying of Agent Orange internationally!