Tasso Azevedo, a forestry manager and socio-environmental entrepreneur dedicated to preserving the Amazon rainforest in Brazil, was selected as the inaugural recipient of the Bright Award in 2013. Azevedo founded the Brazilian non-governmental organization Imaflora to create alternatives to deforestation and was the first chief and director general of the Brazilian Forest Service. In the past 18 years, his innovative approach in promoting forestry management techniques has contributed to reducing the rate of deforestation in the Amazon by 80 percent, and resulted in a 35 percent reduction of Brazil’s greenhouse gas emissions. His work has inspired similar efforts around the world.
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