By Arkady Petrov

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – Fernando de Noronha’s administration authorized, on Saturday, June 8th, the issue of the first ecological licenses for the admission of new vehicles on the island. The ceremony was held in the courtyard of the Porto de Santo Antônio and was attended by residents and businesspeople.

According to the island’s administrator, Guilherme Rocha, 130 licenses will be issued. Of this total, hundred will be awarded to individuals and thirty to corporations.

Under current law, no new cars are allowed in Noronha, only changes to the existing fleet. The decree authorizes the admission of vehicles, as long as they are ecologically friendly, that is, electric.

The district council shall determine the list of license recipients. From Monday, 10th, those interested may register at the island’s administration office.

“You must be a permanent resident and never have owned a car. We will analyze the report and refer to the government to clear the licenses,” said Milton Luna, president of the Council.

There are electric vehicles on the island which do not release CO2. A French automaker donated six units for government use.

Governor Paulo Câmara (PSB) sent a bill to the State Assembly providing for the prohibition of vehicles powered by gasoline, diesel, and alcohol from entering Noronha, as of 2022.

Dune buggies on Fernando de Noronha. (Photo Deposit)

The project also determines that the circulation of non-electric vehicles will be forbidden from 2030 onwards. The reason is that electric cars do not harm the environment.

However, the island is powered by the burning of diesel oil at the Tubarão Thermoelectric Plant by the Companhia Energética de Pernambuco (Celpe), which is a private company.

“This private company has a concession contract with the government with a deadline. This company has a term to adapt to these new environmental issues that are being introduced in Fernando de Noronha”, says the administrator Guilherme Rocha.

Fernando de Noronha is an archipelago of 21 islands and islets in the Atlantic Ocean, 354 km (220 mi) offshore from the Brazilian coast.

The islands are administratively unique in Brazil. They form a “state district” that is not part of any municipality and is administered directly by the government of the state of Pernambuco.

In 2001, UNESCO designated it as a World Heritage Site because of the importance of its environment. The local population and travelers arrive in Noronha by plane from Recife or Natal.

Tourists are charged an “environmental preservation” daily fee upon arrival by Pernambuco State administration, while another fee is paid once to have access to the National Park attractions.

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