Protests and Independent Events at Rio+20 Expose the Human Cost of Brazil's "Green" Economy

Media opportunities at the Rio+20 Earth Summit

As the Rio+20 Earth Summit on sustainable development kicks off in Rio de Janeiro next week, in northern Brazil a consortium of companies is building the massive and catastrophic Belo Monte dam complex in the heart of the Amazon rainforest. The Brazilian government's costs-be-damned attitude about the Belo Monte dam and ominous recent changes to the country's Forest Code expose a glaring hypocrisy between a truly "green economy" and the human cost of measures that are destroying the Amazon and its indigenous peoples in Brazil's own backyard.

Amazon Watch will be accompanying a number of prominent Brazilian indigenous leaders speaking about the Belo Monte dam, including legendary Chief Raoni and Sheyla Juruna of the Kayapó and Juruna peoples in the Brazilian Amazon. Interviews and hi-res media available upon request.

Río+20 Key Activities:

June 13th – 17th: Xingu +23 protest summit in Altamira and Santo Antônio along the Xingu River
Protestors and affected communities will highlight the gap between reality and the Brazilian government's rhetoric about Amazon dams as a source of "clean energy" for a "green economy" in a series of festivities, debates and actions. The gathering will be inaugurated on June 13th, a traditional day of festivities in Santo Antônio. Other activities include a public hearing to debate violations of human rights and environmental legislation in dam licensing and construction, a colorful street march and protests.

June 18th: Symposium on Clean Energy Solutions for Brazil's Future 8:30 - 16:00, The Rio de Janeiro Planetarium (Press conference at 15:00)
A coalition of organizations including Amazon Watch, Instituto Socioambiental, International Rivers and TckTckTck will host a symposium to advance an alternative energy vision for Brazil. The event will bring together leading Brazilian and international experts and key figures from civil society, government and the private sector to discuss challenges and opportunities for a 21st century energy strategy for Brazil. More information here.

June 19th: Rivers to Río Human Banner, Living Art 13:00 – 15:00, Flamengo Beach near the People's Summit (Press conference at 13:30)
In collaboration with indigenous peoples, civil society organizations and social movements gathered in Rio, Amazon Watch will call global attention to the threats large hydroelectric dams pose to rivers, forests, and livelihoods, while dispelling the myth that large hydropower is clean, renewable energy. An estimated 1000+ participants will gather to form a compelling visual message that will be photographed from the air.

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