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“Former U.S. Climate Leaders Press Biden on Amazon Deforestation”

“WASHINGTON — During his presidential campaign, Joseph R. Biden Jr. said the United States should mobilize $20 billion to stop the destruction of the Amazon rainforest and impose “significant economic consequences” if deforestation continued.

Brazil’s conservative populist president, Jair M. Bolsonaro, had an all-caps reply in Portuguese: “OUR SOVEREIGNTY IS NON NEGOTIABLE.” he wrote on Twitter. Brazil’s new leadership “no longer accepts bribes, criminal demarcations or unfounded threats.”

On Friday, a bipartisan coalition of seven former cabinet secretaries and chief climate change negotiators moved to push President Biden forward anyway.

“The Amazon rainforest is absolutely essential to the world. It stabilizes the Earth’s climate and rainfall, sustains many tens of millions of people and is home to more wildlife than anywhere else,” said Bruce Babbitt, a former Arizona governor and Interior secretary during the Clinton administration.”

Lisa Friedman reports for the New York Times January 29, 2021.