SAO PAULO – The Brazilian government has backtracked on its decision to open up a huge reserve in the Amazon rainforest to commercial mining.
President Michel Temer signed a decree in August opening the 46,500-square-kilometer (17,950-square-mile) Renca reserve, which roughly is the size of Switzerland and is rich in gold, iron, manganese and other minerals.
The decree has been sharply criticized by indigenous rights groups, environmentalists, anthropologists and the Catholic church, among others. On Tuesday, its revocation was published in the government's official gazette.
The Mines and Energy Ministry said the government plans to reconsider the issue in the future.