Brazil safeguards a vast network of parks and reserves, termed conservation units.
The creation of conservation units follows a rigorous legal protocol that grants themlong-term stability under varying degrees of formal protection against land usechange. Degazettement, downsizing, or downgrading any conservation unit requiresa law to be passed. Recent shifts in Brazilian conservation policy have, however,favoured infrastructure projects and agricultural land conversion, even when theseinitiatives are in direct conflict with established conservation units. Several bills havebeen proposed by the National Congress threatening 27 conservation units, bringingthe long-term political stability and legal immunity of hitherto sacrosanct existing25 reserves into serious question.