As we explained in today’s issue of the Brazil Daily newsletter, the National Oil Agency (ANP) held an oil and gas field auction this morning including deepwater pre-salt reserves located just kilometers away from the Rocas Atoll and the Fernando de Noronha archipelago. But, as we suggested could happen, not a single company bid for them.
The Rocas Atoll and Fernando de Noronha are world natural heritage sites, being arguably the most biodiverse spots along the Brazilian coast. Experts told The Brazilian Report that “the long-distance seismic waves propelled by oil and gas exploitation could dislocate several species and favor the invasion of exotic animals” which may destabilize the ecosystem.
Purchasing these fields would likely force the winning bidders into litigation, as federal prosecutors and environmental organizations have already filed lawsuits to prevent oil exploitation in the region. Moreover, the financial world is being swept by an ESG wave — which puts environmental, social, and governance issues above the bottom line.