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Green Finance at the service of the neoliberal far-right: the wrecking of environmental regulation and the rise of green bonds in Brazil

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Ecología Política #59 | Extrema Derecha

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Flávio Marques Prol, Gabriela de Oliveira Junqueira, Marta Inez Medeiros Marques y Tomaso Ferrando

Keywords: far-right; environmental policy; green finance; green bonds.

The far-right government of Bolsonaro in Brazil is pursuing an environmental policy that moves forward in two related fronts: the dismantling of the traditional regulatory system for environmental protection; and the increase of the financialization of environmental issues in determining the object and practices of environmental conservation. These policies contribute to the understanding that environmental activists illegitimately operate in a space that shall be otherwise de-politicized and left to “financial and conservation experts”. The redefinition of the Brazilian regulatory system to facilitate the entry of green finance and the issuance of green bonds has significant political and environmental implications that shall be of concern beyond the boundaries of the country. This redefinition expresses the way the Brazilian far-right government is coupling environmental discourse with neoliberal and authoritarian political goals, something that other far-right governments can pursue as well.