But, as Oliver Stuenkel, Professor of International Relations at the Getulio Vargas Foundation, notes for TV5 Monde, “specialists say the problem with deforestation is not lack of monitoring” – the Brazilian system being already very sophisticated – but rather the “lack of control” on the part of state agents, who inflict practically no penalties when abuses are detected.
Thus, according to a study by Mapbiomas, a collaborative network of co-creators made up of NGOs, universities and companies, only 3% of deforestation alerts detected by the satellites of the monitoring system currently in force in Brazil subject to intervention by government environmental protection bodies.
But what does it matter for Bolsonaro, whose short-term horizon is his re-election in the presidential elections which are fast approaching and who intends to take advantage of the media hype which surrounds the personality of Elon Musk. The Brazilian president even qualified this first contact as “the beginning of a romantic relationship” who “will soon lead to a marriage”.
Last Friday, the two men also met in a luxury hotel near São Paulo where the boss of SpaceX was awarded the medal of the Order of Merit for Defense by the Head of State. A way – also – to eclipse the attacks of the various NGOs against him.