The heart of ecotourism in the state of Goiás, the Chapada dos Veadeiros National Park, is under threat in the Chamber of Deputies. Last week (02) Federal MP Delegado Valdir (PSL-GO) introduced a project that reverses the protected area expansion that took place in 2017 to ensure that important remnants of the Cerrado are preserved under pressure from agribusiness development. In practice, the proposal reduces the conservation area by 175,000 ha, which today is about 73% of the park’s total area. In his justification, the deputy states that “an ill-considered increase in its size harms the farmers of the region.”
Draft Legislative Decree (PDL) No. 338/2021 is awaiting direction from the President of the Chamber of Deputies Arthur Lear (PP-AL) to continue its processing in the House of Representatives.
When it was created in 1961, still called Tocantins National Park, the conservation unit covered 625,000 hectares, more than double its current size. The territory was reduced twice: in 1972, when it was finally renamed Chapada dos Veadeiros and reduced to 171,000 hectares, and in 1981, when the reduction reached 65,500 hectares that existed before the expansion that took place in 2017, after the process which lasted 16 years. During the extension of the protected area, the municipal authorities of the municipality of Goias Teresina de Goias questioned the change in court, but the Attorney General’s Office gave a positive opinion on the legality of the extension.
The park is distributed between the municipalities of Alto Paraiso de Goias, Cavalcante, Nova Roma, Teresina de Goias and São João da Alliance.