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WEBCAST: Deforestation in the Time of COVID-19

Date & Time

Aug. 27, 2020
10:00am – 11:15am
This event will be webcast live

WEBCAST: Deforestation in the Time of COVID-19

Cosponsored by Wilson Center’s China Environment Forum, Brazil Institute, Latin America Program and Environmental Change and Security Program

The production of agricultural commodities is the main driver of deforestation around the world. While COVID-19 has brought much in the world to a standstill, the pandemic has served to accelerate commodity-driven deforestation. The problem is particularly severe in Brazil where a weakening of law enforcement and continued international demand for agricultural commodities, led by China, the EU, and the United States, are driving the rapid destruction of the Amazon rainforest. 

Speakers will give short presentations followed by Q&A. Paula Bernasconi from Instituto Centro de Vida (ICV) will talk about the skyrocketing deforestation from soy and beef production in the Brazilian state of Mato Grosso. André Vasconcelos of Global Canopy will introduce a deforestation risk assessment tool and explore links between deforestation and trade with the EU and China. Rick Jacobsen (Environmental Investigation Agency) will discuss U.S. imports of agricultural products associated with deforestation and provide an overview of policy and regulatory responses in consumer markets. Kevin Stockert from U.S. Representative Blumenauer’s office will discuss legislative measures Congress is developing to address the role of trade in driving deforestation. Giuliana Torta (EU Delegation to the U.S.) will provide updates on processes underway in the EU to establish new policies and regulation to reduce the bloc's deforestation footprint.


Paula Bernasconi, Instituto Centro de Vida (ICV)

André Vasconcelos, Global Canopy/TRASE Initiative

Rick Jacobsen, Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA)

Kevin Stockert, U.S. Representative Blumenauer’s office

Giuliana Torta,  EU Delegation to the U.S.  

After initial comments the speakers will take questions from moderator Jennifer Turner (Wilson Center) and the audience. Please direct audience questions to the official CEF Twitter account or to

Date: August 27, 2020 10:00-11:15 AM (EST)



Hosted By

China Environment Forum

Since 1997, the China Environment Forum's mission has been to forge U.S.-China cooperation on energy, environment, and sustainable development challenges. We play a unique nonpartisan role in creating multi-stakeholder dialogues around these issues.  Read more

Brazil Institute

The Brazil Institute—the only country-specific policy institution focused on Brazil in Washington—works to foster understanding of Brazil’s complex reality and to support more consequential relations between Brazilian and U.S. institutions in all sectors.  Read more

Latin American Program

The Wilson Center’s prestigious Latin American Program provides non-partisan expertise to a broad community of decision makers in the United States and Latin America on critical policy issues facing the Hemisphere. The Program provides insightful and actionable research for policymakers, private sector leaders, journalists, and public intellectuals in the United States and Latin America. To bridge the gap between scholarship and policy action, it fosters new inquiry, sponsors high-level public and private meetings among multiple stakeholders, and explores policy options to improve outcomes for citizens throughout the Americas. Drawing on the Wilson Center’s strength as the nation’s key non-partisan forum, the Program serves as a trusted source of analysis and a vital point of contact between the worlds of scholarship and action.  Read more

Environmental Change and Security Program

The Environmental Change and Security Program (ECSP) explores the connections between environmental, health, and population dynamics and their links to conflict, human insecurity, and foreign policy.  Read more