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UNEP Green Economy Advisory Services – Brazil

The United Nations Environment Program, has partnered with the Brazilian government to help the country improve the ‘greenness’ of its economy. The Green Economy Advisory Services provides governments with policy advice, technical assistance and capacity building to help governments develop and implement initiatives to transform and revitalize their economies. For information on the program globally, click here.


Brazil has focused its green economy efforts on water management, biodiversity preservation, renewable energies and control of deforestation.

UNEP’s Green Economy Advisory Services program has worked closely with the Brazilian government to advise on its green economy strategy. It completed a São Paulo-based study which proposed economic instruments, programs and other interventions with targets and indicators to measure progress in the following sectors: renewable energy, green technology, transport, sustainable construction, sanitation, water, agriculture and forests, and tourism.

The government has already made progress: in energy, several national policies have been launched, such as the Alternative Energy Source Incentive Program (PROINFA), the National Energy Conservation Program (PROCEL), the National Program for the Rational Use of Oil and Natural Gas, the National Biodiesel Production and Usage Program and the Light for All Program, which seeks to end the country’s electricity exclusion problem.

In 2010, around 45.5% of its energy was generated from renewable sources.

Since 2009, the Brazilian Government has also included green jobs as a key element in the national development policy. The International Labor Organization (ILO), in partnership with UNEP, has provided permanent support to the conceptual development and practical implementation of a green jobs strategy in the form of studies, courses, workshops and technical assistance at federal and state level.

Brazil-wide study

More recently, UNEP committed to support the Brazilian Association of State Entities of Environment (ABEMA) by undertaking the study “Green Economy in the Brazilian States”. The main goal of this initiative is to identify opportunities and recommendations for the implementation of a green economy and the creation of jobs in strategic sectors. The expected results were:

  • An overview of the initiatives and opportunities to implement a green economy on the strategic sectors of the Brazilian States;
  • An inventory and assessment of the different frameworks and indices being used to measure progress in greening economies;
  • An ensemble of recommendations for the transition to a low carbon economy and for the opportunities that can lead to creation of green jobs on the selected sectors; and
  • Recommendations and technical options for the implementation, at the state level, of the plans for climate change, sustainable production and consumption, water resources policies, solid waste and biodiversity, among others.


Although it has reduced, biodiversity loss due to deforestation in the Amazon continues to be a key environmental challenge for the country, in addition poverty reduction and social inequity. Brazil’s rainforest covers a surface area of over 4 million km2 , representing about 30% of the world’s remaining natural forest.

The Brazilian government has taken measures to reduce the deforestation of the Amazon by promulgating a presidential decree, in 2003, that coordinates actions to reduce deforestation in the Amazon.

Outputs and resources

Read the full study Environment & Development Quality of Life in the State of Sao Paulo.

See the Brazil country profile on the UNEP website here.

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