Essays on the economics and policies of deforestation in Brazil


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Goncalves Sales, Vilane (2019). Essays on the economics and policies of deforestation in Brazil. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

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This thesis presents three essays on the economics and effectiveness of the environmental policies implemented in Brazil with the aim of taking into account possible barriers that contribute to the net forest loss. In the first essay we examine to what extent the Brazil’s institutional environmental framework (IEF) has been successful in curbing deforestation by exploring the determinants of Brazilian deforestation for the period 2004-2015. Our results suggest that the creation of an IEF whilst a positive step, was undermined by weak enforcement such that the introduction of environmental laws as an instrument of the National Environmental Policy had little impact on deforestation. The second essay investigate trends in deforestation in the state of Maranhão. We study the state of Maranhão because of the uniqueness of the area. The artificial line of Legal Amazon crosses part of the state and proposes a natural experiment of deforestation in the under the Legal Amazon Maranhão and Cerrado Maranhão since the former has been subject to fundamentally different environmental policies compared to the latter. We suggest that cloud cover may have acted as an impediment to infringement detection via satellites,as is conducted by the environmental policy program. In our final essay, we investigate further the findings from the previous essay. We use event history analysis to confirm the previous findings by considering the heterogeneity within the region because not all sites have the same risk of deforestation. Our results show that forests inside the specific surveillance policy area had a lower probability of survival comparing to the area not covered by the environmental policy.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
Licence: All rights reserved All rights reserved
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Social Sciences
School or Department: Birmingham Business School, Department of Economics
Funders: Other
Other Funders: Coordination for the Improvement of Higher Education Personnel (CAPES)
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
J Political Science > JF Political institutions (General)
S Agriculture > SD Forestry


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