Brazil Assessment: Case Study

Brazil scored 60 out of 100 in the first national assessment of the Ocean Health Index (published in PLOS One - see sidebar). Regional data replaced global data for pressures and resilience in all 10 goals; and replaced other data layers in four of the ten goals.

Scores for each Index goal were calculated for each of the 17 coastal states in Brazil (see maps below)

Scores By State

View Overall Average
Scores By State

  • Overall Average
  • Food Provision
  • Subgoal: Fisheries
  • Subgoal: Mariculture
  • Artisanal Fishing Opportunities
  • Natural Products
  • Carbon Storage
  • Coastal Protection
  • Tourism & Recreation
  • Coastal Livelihoods & Economies
  • Subgoal: Livelihoods
  • Subgoal: Economies
  • Sense Of Place
  • Subgoal: Iconic Species
  • Subgoal: Lasting Special Places
  • Clean Waters
  • Biodiversity
  • Subgoal: Habitats
  • Subgoal: Species

Top 5 Findings of the Study

See sidebar for full report 

1)  Lasting Special Places ranged from 10 (Piauí) to 98 (Amapá). This sub-goal used a national database of protected areas and Indigenous lands. The remote state of Amapá led all states with a score of 98, because it almost reached the target value (30% protection of the coastal zone). 

2)  Mariculture (sub-goal of food provision) scored low for every state except Santa Catarina. Low scores were due either to below-target amounts of production or to production of unsustainable species, especially whiteleg shrimp (Litopenaeus vannamei), which caused severe mangrove loss, coastal erosion, pollution, land-use conflicts and loss of traditional livelihoods particularly in Northeastern states. 

3)  Tourism & Recreation scores ranged from 1 (Pará) to 100 (Rio de Janeiro). States in the North and South of Brazil had the lowest scores (except for Santa Catarina). 

4)  Habitat-based goals, including Carbon Storage, Coastal Protection and the Habitat sub-goal of Biodiversity, scored high across most states, with the exception of Rio Grande do Norte where rapid expansion of shrimp farms has caused high rates of mangrove loss. 

5)  Clean Waters scores ranged from 31 (Piaui) to 90 in Amapá and 95 (São Paulo). Amapá, a less developed state with low access to sanitation and waste management services but low population densities scored nearly as well as São Paulo, which is developed and densely-populated.

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