U.K. Cuts Funds for Amazon Protection to Pay for Operations in Iraq

In the latest evidence that war is bad for the environment, biodiversity in the Amazon rainforest stands to suffer because of the conflict in Iraq. Sounds a bit roundabout, but the reason is simple: money. Straining to come up with almost $900 million for rebuilding Iraq, the British government is poised to slash funding for an internationally backed program that helps indigenous communities in Brazil’s Amazon combat illegal logging and take up sustainable forestry. At least one Labor Party member of parliament is protesting the diversion of conservation funds, as are a number of enviros. “The Amazon contains 20 to 50 per cent of the world’s land-based resources,” said John Sauven of Greenpeace. “I find it quite incredible that these vital resources are being diverted to rebuild Iraq.”