Who Makes The Change


by Marcelo de Aguiar & Bernadett Kiss

The documentary is based on my MSc field study performed in the Amazon to evaluate the local impact of policy reforms reflecting the Climate Agenda on Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD). In this short documentary, the story of Jesuina Braga Alves (Jo) illustrates the livelihood of many small scale farmers in the Brazilian Amazon whose survival has been challenged by changes on the climate and consequent top-down reform on policies.

To reduce forest emissions small scale farmers have faced personal and technical difficulties to phase out slash-and-burn agricultural practices and implement agroforestry as a sustainable alternative to produce their food crops while restoring forest landscapes. Small scale farmers are on the forefront of forest conservation and are the most legitimate actors to represent the forest. Therefore, decision makers should engage those actors and consider their needs and obstacles to achieve the global common goal for reducing emissions from deforestation and mitigate climate change.

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