Following a long-waited ratification (on March 4, 2021), Brazil became a party to the Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilization (“Nagoya Protocol” or “Protocol”) on  June 2, 2021. This is an opportunity to dig into some practical consequences of the ratification. One of these consequences relates to offering a possible remedy to clarify one of the pending issues related to the material scope of Law 13123 of May 20, 2015 (the “Brazilian Biodiversity Law” or “Law”).

Continue Reading Biodiversity – Brazil: Does the Nagoya Protocol Set Limits to the Scope of Domestic Legislation?

As our readers are well aware, climate change and stakeholder litigation is on a global uptrend as it has never been before. Whether claims are brought against governments or companies, whether these claims are accepted or dismissed, and whether they involve domestic or cross-border matters, there is already a plethora of precedents worldwide involving climate issues and stakeholder litigation, each playing their own part on the grand scheme of legal measures and instruments available for fighting global warming. However, only a handful of these precedents are as significant as the decision issued on May 26th, 2021, by the Hague District Court in Milieudefensie et. al. v. Royal Dutch Shell.

In summary, the Hague District Court has ordered Shell to reduce its CO2 emission levels by 45% by 2030, compared to 2019 levels. In this Blog Post, we provide an overview on this decision and on how it may be a game changer when it comes to climate change and stakeholder litigation.


Continue Reading Unprecedented Decision Sets a Milestone for Climate Change Litigation Cases: What’s Next?

On April 26, 2021, the Central Bank of Brazil (BCB) launched a new public consultation (No. 86/2021, the “Consultation”) on a proposed regulation for mandatory disclosure of social, environmental, and climate risks by financial institutions.

Climate-related risks must be disclosed in accordance with the TCFD Recommendations (“Recommendations”), including both

Recently celebrating the 10th anniversary of its entry into force, the Nagoya Protocol is a supplementary agreement to the Convention on Biological Diversity of 1992, which seeks to facilitate the protection of biodiversity globally. Parties to the Nagoya Protocol (Parties) have committed to so-called “Access and Benefit Sharing” (ABS) principles regarding the acquisition and utilization of genetic resources and associated traditional knowledge.

In a nutshell, access to those resources is conditioned upon obtaining the prior informed consent of authorities in the country of origin. Resources should then be used according to “Mutually Agreed Terms”, which shall include benefit sharing mechanisms with the country of origin.

This structure places concrete obligations on any company dealing with nature-based products and, notably, a need to obtain appropriate administrative authorizations and set up contractual arrangements toward benefit sharing. Beyond that, the key driver for compliance is to avoid the reputational costs associated with possible allegations of bio-piracy. Given the complexity of the global supply chains involved, global compliance is a challenge.

In this Blog Post, we discuss the practical implications of the Protocol on international businesses and their supply chains.


Continue Reading The Nagoya Protocol & Access and Benefit Sharing: Organizing the Supply Chain Toward Protection of Biodiversity Globally

Following in the footsteps of other central banks around the world, and in face of the pressing need for an inclusive and sustainable economic recovery after the COVID-19 pandemic, on April 7, 2021, the Central Bank of Brazil (BCB) launched public consultation No. 85/2021 (Consultation). The Consultation includes proposed amendments and new rules governing the management of social, environmental and climate risks by financial institutions (and other institutions with operations authorized by the BCB), as well as the requirements to be observed by these institutions in the elaboration and implementation of their respective Social, Environmental and Climate Responsibility Policy (PRSAC).

The BCB joined the Network for Greening the Financial System (NGFS) on March 25, 2020, and, on September 8, 2020, launched the “Sustainability Dimension” of its work agenda (Agenda BC#), which aims to promote sustainable finance, proper management of social, environmental and climate risks in the National Financial System (SFN), and integration of ESG variables into BCB’s decision-making process.


Continue Reading Brazil’s Central Bank Set to Incorporate Social, Environmental and Climate Factors into Financial Regulation

On March 4, 2021, Brazil ratified the Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilization (“Nagoya Protocol” or “Protocol”). Starting on June, 2, 2021, the country becomes a party to the Protocol and will be able to actively take part in discussions and decision-making, including by participating in the next Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the Parties to the Nagoya Protocol (COP-MOP 4) scheduled for October 2021.

Brazil is the most biodiverse country in the world, and the ratification comes 10 years after the signing of the Protocol on February 2, 2011. In the meantime, the country passed its own regulations on biodiversity, notably Law 13,123 of May 20, 2015 (Brazilian Biodiversity Law), which provides for access to genetic resources and traditional knowledge, as well as benefit-sharing mechanisms. The Brazilian Biodiversity Law is the national legislation for implementing the Nagoya Protocol and one of the key access and benefit-sharing (ABS) legislations, which places benefit-sharing obligations on manufacturers of finished products developed from Brazilian genetic resources (regardless of who previously accessed the resources).


Continue Reading Brazil Ratifies the Nagoya Protocol: One Step Further to Unlock the Potential of Brazilian Biodiversity

With the surge of climate and stakeholder litigation all over the globe–comprising climate, supply chain and human rights issues–not only should governments be concerned, but mainly the private sector. It is not new that, in addition to creating stakeholder engagement and pushing forward public policies, ESG concerns pose significant reputational and financial risks, particularly to corporations. This is not only true for those companies dedicated to carbon-intensive activities or exposed to supply chain liabilities, but also to financial institutions enabling the development and expansion of such activities.

This is a particularly relevant matter in Brazil, which already relies on a well-established legal and case law framework capable of supporting sanctions and prosecution against corporations and financial institutions deemed liable in connection with environmental degradation.

In this Blog Post, we discuss the existing legal framework in Brazil with respect to environmental degradation, and how that framework might apply to the broader range of ESG issues, from climate to supply chain and human rights liability.


Continue Reading Climate and Stakeholder Litigation: Why Does It Matter to Companies Operating In Brazil?

On December 7, 2020, the Brazilian Securities and Exchange Commission (CVM) launched a consultation on proposed amendments to Normative Ruling 480/2009 aimed at, inter alia, increasing transparency by improving the quality of information disclosed by publicly-held companies on ESG aspects.

Following the global trend of enhancing and simplifying disclosures—similar to what the US Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) has recently done with Regulation S-K—CVM’s main goal is to reduce compliance costs while also responding to investors’ increasing demand for better ESG data. In this Blog Post, we highlight the main ESG-related amendments proposed by CVM in this new consultation paper.


Continue Reading Brazilian Securities and Exchange Commission Set to Strengthen ESG Reporting Requirements

Drawing on international experience such as the Renewable Fuel Standard, California’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard and the EU Renewable Energy Directive, the Brazilian Biofuels Policy (RenovaBio) was established in 2017 by Law No. 13,576/2017. It is designed to support Brazil’s commitments under the Paris Agreement, promote further expansion of the production and use of biofuels in the national energy matrix and improve the energy efficiency of biofuels.

In this Blog Post, we discuss key elements of RenovaBio, as well as early results of the policy’s implementation and other developments in the Brazilian carbon markets more broadly.


Continue Reading The Resurgence of Carbon Markets in Brazil: Championing Main Country Strengths – Biofuels and Forest Resources

Discussions on mandatory human rights due diligence have been gaining increased attention over the past months, particularly in the European Union. Such a trend, however, has yet to reach Latin American countries, including Brazil. In spite of that, Brazil and Brazilian institutions and enterprises have adhered to a variety of global frameworks, standards and initiatives